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How Healthy are your Nuts?

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I couldn’t help it, the title was just too tempting.  But seriously, nuts are a real power food and provide you with a lot of great benefits, including fiber and healthy fats, not to mention essential vitamins and minerals.  That said, some nuts rate better than others.  All in all, they are healthy, but if you have a choice, some might be worth choosing over others.

The chart below gives you a glimpse of the nutrition facts for each variety of nut.  The quantities are based on 1 oz. of nuts (1/4 cup), which is a standard serving size.  The fat is also broken down by Total Fat in grams and then Saturated Fat (SF), Monounsaturated Fat (MUF) and Polyunsaturated Fat (PUF).

 

nut_chartGenerally, Almonds and Walnuts are the healthiest choices, with hazelnuts and pistachios coming in second. Again, all nuts have some benefits, which are listed below:

Almonds: They stabilize blood sugar and are high in calcium.  They are one of the nuts with the highest fiber content, highest magnesium content and are lower in total fat than most other nuts and are very low in saturated fat.    Lastly, they are very easy on the digestive system, making them a great option for those who have digestive issues.

Brazil Nuts: They contain Omega-3s, an essential Fatty Acid and high levels of selenium, which may help to prevent breast cancer.  Unfortunately, they tend to be high in saturated fat, an unhealthy fat.

Cashews: They are high in magnesium (second to almonds), which is a mineral that helps to build strong bones.  They are also lower in overall fat than most other nuts.  However, they are high in saturated fat and tend to be low in fiber.

Hazelnuts: They are a good source of protein and offer high levels of Vitamin E and Beta-Sitosterol, which contribute to heart health and help to fight cancer.  They are also high in fiber and low in saturated fat.

Macadamias: They are high in monounsaturated fat, are a good source of thiamine and contain small amounts of phosphorous, selenium, calcium and potassium.  That said, they are low in protein and high in overall fat.

Peanuts: Really legumes (more similar to peas and beans), peanuts are highest in Protein and have small amounts of Omega-3s.

Pecans: They are high in Vitamin E and regular consumption may help to decrease LDL (bad) cholesterol levels.  On the down-side, they are low in protein and are higher in fat content than most nuts.

Pine Nuts: Actually seeds from pine trees, Pine Nuts contain large amounts of thiamine (Vitamin B1) and Protein.  If you are on a diet, they may act as an appetite suppressant.

Pistachios: They are high in calcium, magnesium and Vitamin A, as well as fiber and iron.

Walnuts: They are the grand-daddy of nuts!  They are high in Vitamin E and have an ideal ratio of Omega-3 to Omega-6 fatty acids, which have anti-inflammatory properties, protect your heart’s health and guard against arthritis.

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Posted in Brett's Blog, Nutrition Tagged with: , , , , , ,
  • Jane Gill

    Thanks for all your very pertinent information. I’ll come to this site again and again. Loved this page about nuts because I snack on walnuts and dried cranberries but will switch to raisins because they probably don’t have as much sugar. Keep up the good work

  • http://eons.com AnnaElizabeth

    I have been using flx seed oil and cod liver oil and vite e oil and Primrose oil. I take estrogen I no longer have hormons. A Gybn Doctor recomended me for this. My hair gets really oily now and my skin is always wet, tings stick to me. My skin is very soft.
    I am happy this way. Anna

  • Anne

    Good information: I am a great believer in eating nuts and I depend on them for protein and Omega-3’s.

    Your site has a calm, understated appearance. This works well for some things, but I found the site difficult to read–I realized I was squinting! It would be much easier to read (and remember) if it had more color. The density of the colors you use could be bumped up with the gray font being almost black, the pale aqua and blue being darker, etc. I am a tech writer, I have a great computer and monitor, and I have never had trouble reading other sites.

    I would not bother writing this, except that your blog is worth reading.

    Anne

  • gg

    Found your site to be very beneficial. Have to save this for my husband to read. He loves to eat peanuts.Now I have something solid to prove. Thanks to you.

  • michelle

    I notice that you do not mention at all the benefits of soaking your nuts or soaking period. nuts and seeds can all add great value and variety to the diet, yet they contain antinutrients – particularly phytates and enzyme inhibitors – which detract from their nutritive value. Have you tried this before?

    • Brett

      I have not heard of this before at all! I’ll have to look into it. Thanks Michelle!

  • ra

    awesome! i have walnuts, almonds and some pistachios always stocked @ my home. i am on the right diet :)

  • jon

    doesn’t walnut give ya gas???? :P lolz……