Nuts are astounding nutritious and delicious snacks. Nuts are packed with monounsaturated fats that help keep our heart healthy and they are also high in protein, vitamins, and minerals. Scientific studies now show that different types of nuts and seeds may support factors that help lower cholesterol, prevent weight gain and lower cancer risk. Here is a list of five healthiest nuts you should include in your diet.
1. Almonds: Almonds are rich in magnesium as a small handful of almonds give you almost 25% of your daily needs for magnesium. Almonds also improve cholesterol levels. A number of small studies have found that eating an almond-rich diet can reduce “bad” LDL cholesterol, total cholesterol and oxidized LDL cholesterol, which is particularly harmful to heart health. They are also high in many antioxidants, such as vitamin E and selenium. Studies show that almonds may play an important role in preventing colon cancer due to their high content of fiber. Another surprising fact about almonds is that if they consumed as part of a low-calorie diet they may aid weight loss.
2. Walnuts: Walnuts are one of the best nuts and they are an excellent source of the omega-3 fatty acid alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). Studies show that consumption of walnuts is related to heart-health, better cognitive function, as well as the reduction of skin and bone conditions. Also, a number of large studies have found that consuming walnuts reduced total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol while increasing “good” HDL cholesterol. Moreover, walnuts may help reduce inflammation, which can cause many chronic diseases.
3. Brazil Nuts: Brazil nuts originate from a tree in the Amazon and are high in minerals like copper, niacin, vitamin E, fiber, magnesium, and selenium. Selenium is a mineral that acts as an antioxidant. Also, Brazil nuts may reduce inflammation in both healthy people and patients undergoing hemodialysis.
4. Pecans: Pecans contain a variety of beneficial nutrients. Recent clinical studies have shown that pecans can significantly lower LDL cholesterol in people with normal cholesterol levels. Pecans also contain polyphenols, which act as antioxidants.
5. Cedar Nuts: The nuts of the Siberian Cedar tree hold 70% of the essential amino acids your body needs. Cedar nuts are a valuable source of vitamins E and F, which, amongst other things help break down fat. They also contain high amounts of vitamins A, B and D. This exotic nut also contains a fatty acid similar to fish oil, which is known for reducing the amount of LDL cholesterol, keeping the arterial walls free of disease-causing inflammation and plaque.