Here's why you need to make nuts a staple on your grocery list!
Nuts are a superb snacking option. It is important that you simply start to incorporate them in your routine because they’re not only rich in protein but also in a few heart-healthy fats. Nuts have the power of reducing the low-density lipoprotein: LDL or ‘bad’ cholesterol levels. LDL, if increased for an extended period, results in the development of plaque within the body that builds within the blood vessels. Eating a few nuts during a day has also been linked to lower levels of inflammation which can help improve one’s heart condition. Here are a few of their health benefits:
♦ Nuts like walnuts are rich in Omega-3s that appear to assist your heart and brain health too.
♦ Nuts are high in healthy fats, low in carbs and contain good amount of protein. They are also an excellent source of several nutrients, including Vitamin E, potassium, magnesium and selenium.
♦ They are high in antioxidants referred to as polyphenols, which can protect cells from radical and oxidative stress and thus they offer anti-aging properties as well.
♦ They assist in correcting a deranged lipid profile and basically improve the HDL (High-density lipoprotein) if taken carefully.
♦ Good for people with diabetes because the fiber from nuts helps in the slow release of sugar within the blood, keeping glucose levels steady.
♦ Helps in reducing inflammation and successively many other disorders that reveal inflammation as their root cause.
♦ Helpful in maintaining the gut flora as they are high in fiber, which may reduce disease risk, help keep you full, decrease calorie absorption and act as prebiotics too.
♦ Nuts are food for the brain due to their healthy fat content and thus are found to be helpful in the treatment and prevention of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.
Nuts are super tasty and make for a healthy snacking option, especially when you are travelling or have a busy schedule where you do not have access to anything. A handful of soaked nuts will keep you going for the day. But always make sure that you avoid salted options because it can cause water retention due to a to high sodium content. Soaking nuts is additionally helpful because it reduces anti-nutritional properties like phytic acids and decreases chances of getting bloating after eating.
(The writer is the Chief Nutrition Officer, Luke Coutinho Holistic Healing Systems. She is a clinical nutritionist with a focus on healthy lifestyle choices.)
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