A lot of people consider nuts to be a great snack, and a healthy alternative to their usual processed high fat foods, and they do have many benefits as outlined below. However, you have to be aware of their high calorie and high fat content.
A portion of nuts is probably a lot smaller than you think. Have a look at the picture above, would you guess 100 calories to be only 3 Brazil nuts? I'm guessing not. It's always good to be aware of portion recommendations as it's very easy to eat a large quantity of nuts in one sitting. However, this could be where those extra calories are sneaking in, and could explain why you're not losing weight.
If you consider your diet to be very good, you're exercising regularly but not losing weight, but you are snacking on nuts, check how many you're eating. Don't necessarily cut them out, just stick to a smaller portion.
Here are some of the benefits of eating nuts:
1. Walnuts contain the most antioxidants of all the nuts and are great at protecting the body from the cellular damage that contributes to some serious diseases, cancer and ageing. They also have the highest Omega 3 content which fight inflammation. Not only that, but if you're struggling with PMS symptoms, the Manganese in Walnuts may help reduce this!
2. Cashews are most rich in Zinc and Iron. Iron can help prevent Anemia and Zinc is essential for healthy vision and a good immune system. On top of that they're also high in Magnesium which may improve memory!
3. Almonds contain the most fiber and are the richest in Vitamin E, and are a good choice of snack in moderation if trying to lose weight. They are less calorie dense which means you can enjoy more of them!
4. Pecans have been found to considerably lower LDL cholersterol levels and reduce plaque formation in the arteries therefore improving heart health! The Vitamin E found in Pecans may delay progression of degenerative neurological diseases.
5. A single Brazil nut contains more than 100% of our daily Selenium, a mineral which may help prevent some cancers. However, keep in mind consuming high levels of Selenium may be harmful, so stick to one portion.
6. Macadamia nuts are the most calorie dense. They contain the highest level of monounsaturated fat and this type of fat is known to reduce LDL cholesterol and blood pressure.
7. Pistachios are the least calorie dense with only 4 calories per nut. They are a great source of Potassium a mineral essential for a healthy nervous system, as well as Vitamin B6 which lifts your mood. Not only that but they slow your eating pace as you have to remove each nut from the shell.
8. Hazelnuts are an all around nut. Just like some of the others, they contain high levels of monounsaturated fats and Vitamin E.