ALMONDS – A Tasty Little Treat That Packs a Nutritious Punch!
You know how it is, busy days with kids, packed with sporting events, music lessons, martial arts, swim class etc. There’s no time for anything but fast food! So I keep a bag of almonds handy, as a fiber loaded, protein packed snack that will actually get some substance in our tummies, and satisfy the urge to munch on something.
I LOVE almonds! I’ve made pancakes with almond flour, almond oil is an awesome carrier oil for topical essential oil application, and almond butter is awesome because so many kids are allergic to peanuts, and it tastes so sweet and yummy.
Nuts.com is trying to get the word out about the benefits of almonds. Since I love researching nutrients in food and how they impact health, I thought I’d help their cause. There were hundreds, if not thousands of studies on almonds! I’ve highlighted 3 good ones below:
1. Almonds Lower Bad Cholesterol
A recent study (published January, 2015) showed adding almonds enabled patients to reduce statin doses. It is believed that the beneficial nutrients in almonds, including mono and polyunsaturated fatty acids, fiber and protein, reduced LDL-C cholesterol.
Subjects in the study were given 100 grams of almonds daily for 4 weeks. The group given almonds showed a 4.9% reduction in bad cholesterol, compared with a 3.5% INCREASE for the non-almond group!
Source: clinicaltrials.gov Identifier: NCT00603876
2. Eating Almonds Can Improve Mood!
Just 1/4 cup of almonds contains 4.36 g of omega-6. Omega-6 fatty acids are crucial for brain function, normal growth and development and have even been found to reduce depression! A study from July 2014 showed that prescribing almonds, and other Omega rich foods, is beneficial for patients suffering from depression.
Source: PMID: 25068136 [PubMed]
3. Almonds Improve Weight Loss & Overall Health
A May, 2014 a 3 month study of 100 overweight and obese women was conducted to determine if almond’s high energy density would improve, or slow weight loss efforts. The control group was fed a strict, nut free diet for the duration of the study, and the other groups was fed the exact same diet, but with the added calories of almonds. The Almond group experienced greater weight loss, and improvements to other areas of their health, including total cholesterol, blood sugar, and blood pressure. More weight was lost, even with the increase in calories.
Source: PMID 25097630 [PubMed]
So, almonds are good for your heart, brain, and waistline. AWESOME!
Another great way to get the nutritional benefits of almonds is with almond milk. But store bought almond milk has preservatives and stabilizers. It’s better to make your own, and avoid the added ingredients.
And don’t miss this recipe I posted for Almond Crusted Brussels Sprouts.. YUMMY!
This cute graphic from Nuts.com shows how much nutrition is packed into just one serving of almonds. Look at all that fiber, Vitamin E, and protein!
Now, let’s all go snack on some almonds!