Almonds have long been prized as one of the humankind’s most favorite tree nuts. They were popular before, in ancient Egyptian diets and Indian populations. Ancient Indian Ayurvedic practitioners even believed that almonds had the capability to boost brain capacity, longevity, and intellectual ability.
At present day, the nutritional value and health benefits of almonds are praised worldwide, and they are used in a number of different ways: eaten in their raw state as a snack; as the main ingredient in almond butter, almond flour or almond milk; and even in numerous fragrances and body lotions.
Almonds (scientifically termed Prunus dulcis) are actually the hard seed from the center of an almond fruit, and their taste varies from bitter to sweet.
Almonds health benefits come from the wide range of nutrients the nut offers, including:
• macronutrients (lipids, proteins and complex carbohydrates)
• micronutrients (a good amount of dietary fiber, vitamin E, B vitamins -B1,2,3,5,6,9 and Choline- and minerals -calcium, selenium, iron, magnensium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, zinc niacin and copper-).
Let’s see in detail what can we get from almond…
1. Preventing Heart Attacks and Heart Disease
Two of the key chemical components of almond nutrition are antioxidants and ‘good’ mono-unsaturated fatty acids, both of which support heart health and prevent various cardiovascular symptoms from developing. Almonds, in particular, supply antioxidant flavonoids, plant-based elements present in the almond skin that work in combination with vitamin R to reduce inflammation and boost artery health.
Almond nutrition also comprises of key nutrients to support heart health, which includes copper, arginine, calcium, manganese, potassium and magnesium. Research suggests that almonds have a constant ‘bad’ LDL cholesterol-reducing effect, specifically in people with high diabetes and cholesterol.
Almond nutrition benefits also make them a perfect food for supporting healthy blood pressure and cholesterol levels, besides combating obesity and weight gain – three of the main risk factors linked to stroke and heart attack.
2. Improving Bone Health
Phosphorus, one of the many minerals found in it, can have a significant impact on the durability and strength of teeth and bones, while also preventing the start of age-related issues like osteoporosis.
3. Strengthening The Immune System
It’s an excellent source of alkali materials, which are known to boost the strength of the immune system, and also enhance the ability to keep various health issues and diseases at bay. Vitamin E is also a powerful antioxidant that helps eliminate free radicals in the body, thereby reducing the risk of chronic diseases.
4. Reducing Inflammation
It contains two very important fatty acids, linolenic and linoleic acids, both of which help minimize inflammation throughout the body.
Fatty acids also promote healthy hair and skin.
5. Increasing Energy Production
Copper, riboflavin and manganese present in almonds assist in metabolic rate and energy production.
6. Preventing Cancer
Almonds enhance the movement of food through the colon, thus preventing any residue and consequent colon cancer.
7. Effective for Pregnancy
It is rich in folic acid, which helps reduce the incidence of birth defects in infants. Furthermore, it also promotes healthy growth of tissue and cell formation. Doctors typically recommend and prescribe folic acid to pregnant ladies in order to keep their babies healthy.
8. Weight Loss
Unsweetened almonds are a great option to use if you are trying to lose weight. Almonds contain a lot of mon-unsaturated fats, which is what satiates your hunger pangs, helping you not to over eat. The dietary fiber in almonds also makes you feel fuller for long periods of time, despite consuming only a small quantity. Research suggests that a diet that is low calorie and also rich in almonds is excellent for obese people since it helps them shed excess weight faster.
Studies confirm that people who consume almonds on a regular basis (at least two times a week) are far more likely to retain their ideal weight, as compared to those that never or rarely consume almonds and experience weight fluctuations.
9. Helping Control Blood Sugar Levels
Almonds are low in carbs, but rich in fiber, protein, and healthy fats. This makes them an ideal option for diabetics. Magnesium is a mineral involved in over 300 bodily functions, which includes blood sugar control.
10. Preventing Constipation
Since they are packed with fiber, almonds help prevent constipation. To speed up the digestive process, it is best to drink a lot of water when consuming almonds.
11. Improves Brain Health
They are an excellent source of a variety of nutrients which help in the growth and health of the human brain. L-carnitine and riboflavin are two essential brain nutrients present in almonds and have shown to boost brain activity and also reduce the occurrence of Alzheimer’s.
12. Supplying The Body With Much-Need Antioxidants
They are a great source of antioxidants. Antioxidants help protect the body against digestive stress, which can harm molecules present in cells and also accelerate aging and health issues like cancer. The concentration of antioxidants are largely found in the skin of almonds.
Almonds are considered as a wonderful dry fruit and it is strongly recommended that you start incorporating it in your daily diet. There are several ways you can integrate almonds in your food – you can add them on salads, sugar-free desserts and a lot of other delicious recipes that you’ll soon find on our blog!