Walnuts health benefits

Walnuts are the healthiest nuts!

You say we’re exaggerating? Wait a moment – we have some proofs:

Scientists from University of Scranton in USA compared the antioxidant content in 9 of most popular nuts. Walnuts had twice as many antioxidants as their competitors. When we also remember that nuts in general are often recommended by most dietitians as an ideal snack for healthy lifestyle – we already have strong reason to believe that walnuts are a snack packed with health benefits. The other extraordinary fact is that walnuts contain vitamin E, which in their case doesn’t take a form of α-tocopherol but  γ-tocopherol. And it means it gives specific health benefits to our bodies – including circulatory system. Not enough evidence to convince you? Here they are:

walnuts health benefits
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More health benefits of walnuts

Walnuts have been known in Europe for a long time – originating in Asia, they were propagated by the Romans to other regions of the old continent.

Heart and circulatory system

Consumption of walnuts brings it a whole range of health benefits associated with presence of large amount of antioxidants. That means walnuts are useful as a dietary ingredient for healthy heart and circulatory system. Current researches of  nut consumption suggest that their intake reduces risk of death due to cardiovascular disease. But this is not only thanks to antioxidants.

Walnuts contain a substance called l-arginine, useful for maintaining the health of cardiovascular system. Sometimes you can find it as an ingredient of dietary supplements.

Cholesterol

Another important ingredient is alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). When it’s present more often in your diet it’s a determinant of the significantly lower risk of sudden death due to cardiovascular disease. Walnuts clearly increase the level of ALA in your blood, also regulating the level of cholesterol in the blood. Current research showed that daily intake of walnuts reduced its level.

Walnuts for weight loss

The number of calories that nuts provide, including walnuts can scare away some people who would like to lose weight but also have lack of knowledge of healthy eating. The scientifically proven truth is that walnuts help in maintaining a healthy level of body weight, as well as being extremely filling.

Although they are also highly caloric (546 kcal per 100 grams mainly in the form of healthy fat forms), it makes them eaten in moderation have a positive effect on keeping slim. This i also because they have a large amount of high-quality protein and a low glycemix index, which means that after eating them – we will longer feel full. When we add a lot of fiber to it – we have have a good food for weight loss.

Diabetes

When we talk about type 2 diabetes, the beneficial properties of nuts were also found. The research showed decrease in its risk by 15-21%.

Aphrodisiac?

Walnuts support male reproductive ability. Regular consumption of walnuts contributes to better semen quality.

Anti-cancer properties

The extremely high antioxidant content of nuts is a reson why the also have anti-cancer effect (they defeat free radicals, reducing the risk of numerous serious diseases). Nuts in general  were tested for cancer prevention and it has been proven that their addition to the diet have an Impact on decreasing growth of selected tumors and the risk of developing the disease.

Nervous system and brain

Walnuts have health benefits useful for brain functioning both for the elderly and young. In case of older people, its Impact is to delay the aging processes and selected diseases of the nervous system. In particular, they maintain cognitive functions on high level. In young people it also means support for mental processes and memory improvement. Omega-3 content also means reduction in the risk of depression.

Antioxidants, omega-3 acids, vitamin E and folate are all responsible for these properties.

Kidney stones

Although as you can see in the above examples, the health-promoting properties of walnuts are versatile, special attention should be take by people who may have problems with kidney Stones. This is because high content of oxalates in these nuts. Oxalates are known to contribute to the formation of Stones.

Nutritional value of walnuts

Walnuts give a lot of energy, mainly in a form of healthy fats (omega-3!). It’s also worth mentioning that they contain a lot of manganese. Vitamin E, folate, thiamine and vitamin B6.

100 grams of walnuts cover daily demand on (USDA data):

Value % RDI
Energy 33%
Carbohydrates 11%
Proteins 27%
Fats 217%
Sodium 0%
Cholesterol 0%
Potassium 9%
Fiber 18%
Calcium 10%
Iron 36%
Copper 167%
Magnesium 40%
Manganese 148%
Phosphorus 49%
Zinc 28%
Folate 24%
Vitamin C 2%
Thiamine 28%
Vitamin E-gamma 139%

Should you remove skin from walnuts?

Walnuts have a characteristic skin with a slightly bitter taste. In fact – not everyone like this taste. However, should it be strictly removed form dietary point of view?

As in case of many different types of food, the skin has its own beneficial health properties for which it is good to eat it together with the nut. Well, the vast majority of antioxidants we wrote about in this article are in this layer of nut! Is it really worth giving up this wealth?

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