6 Nuts You Should Be Eating for Better Health

Nuts. Love them or hate them, they are packed with essential nutrients that promote great health. However, choosing the right nut to eat can be a daunting task, especially for people with nut allergies. This post will help you understand the best nuts to eat for health and alternatives for those with nut allergies.

nuts-assortment-on-wooden-table

1. Almonds

Ah, the perennial favorite. Almonds are an excellent source of vitamin E, magnesium, and healthy fats. These nutrients help regulate blood sugar, prevent heart diseases, reduce inflammation, and lower cholesterol levels. Moreover, almonds contain antioxidants that protect against cellular damage and aging.

2. Walnuts

Walnuts are another nutrient-dense nut with high levels of omega-3 fatty acids, a nutrient that most people lack in their diet. Omega-3s help improve brain function, protect against inflammation, and prevent heart diseases. Walnuts are also rich in vitamins and minerals like iron, potassium, and magnesium.

3. Pistachios

One of our family favorites, pistachios are nutrient powerhouses and contain high amounts of fiber, magnesium, and protein. The fiber in pistachios helps in digestion and weight loss, while the magnesium content helps regulate blood pressure and maintain healthy bones. It's great that they're so healthy because we can never resist a good pistachio gelato!

toasted-pine-nuts-atop-salad-greens-toast

4. Cashews

Cashews are a good source of healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals. They are rich in monounsaturated fats that are good for the heart. Cashews contain magnesium, which helps regulate blood pressure and muscle function. They are also a good source of iron and zinc, essential minerals for a healthy immune system.

5. Pine Nuts

We LOVE pine nuts. They're best slightly roasted in the pan over a small flame (they burn easily so keep an eye on them. Once they start to color they'll turn super fast!). They're nutrient-dense and full of heart-healthy fats, protein, and essential vitamins and minerals such as vitamin K, vitamin E, magnesium, phosphorus and zinc which are key building blocks for bone health, immune function, and antioxidant protection. They can be relatively pricey but a little goes a long way. We love them on top of toasts, salads, or even as a small crunchy snack.

6. Peanuts

Peanuts, although technically a legume, are also a great source of healthy fats, protein, and fiber. They are rich in niacin, a nutrient that helps maintain healthy skin, nerves, and digestion. Peanuts also contain resveratrol, a potent antioxidant that helps prevent cancer and cardiovascular diseases. However, it is one of the more poorly tolerated nuts. Speaking of which...

Alternatives for People with Nut Allergies

Have a nut allergy? You can still enjoy the health benefits of nuts by switching to seeds like pumpkin, chia, flax, and sunflower seeds. These seeds are excellent sources of healthy fats, fiber, protein, and essential vitamins and minerals. They are also a great alternative to nuts in recipes, such as trail mixes, smoothies, and baking. Our toddlers can never resist a delicious, chilled chia pudding especially on hot days.

Nuts are an essential part of a healthy diet, providing a wealth of nutrients that help prevent diseases and promote overall wellbeing. Stock the right nuts (or seeds) in your pantry according to your health needs and preferences, and you'll be surprised how easy they are to incorporate into your day to day.

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