Nuts are exceptionally healthy food and can safeguard a person from several risk factors. They have high-fat content and calories. Almonds, cashews, Macadamia nuts, Walnuts, Brazil nuts, and Pistachios are some most popular nuts.
These can be a great nutrients source (fibre, fat, protein & some minerals), have antioxidant properties, may reduce cholesterol levels, lower inflammation, promote heart health, and more.
However, if eaten without limits, nuts and seeds can be risky to the body.
Eating too many nuts and seeds can cause the following to happen:
Possible Weight Gains
According to some research, nuts can aid in weight loss. Almonds and Pistachios have revealed that they promote loss of weight rather than gains.
Though they have high-calorie content, research indicates that our bodies don’t absorb all of them. One study found that those who eat nuts lost an average of five centimetres from their waists.
On the contrary, excess consumption of this food can be disastrous and lead to weight gain. The reason is that nuts are caloric, meaning that they have more energy per small amount.
For instance, one ounce can contain 160 calories; thus, even a double serving result in accumulation of 320 calories. If eaten without limits, there will be possible weight gains. The perfect way to avoid this with nuts should be to add them to the diet while reducing other meals containing high calories.
While nuts and seeds contain fibres which are essential for easing digestion and reducing constipation, excess intake can pose gastrointestinal problems. You could experience bloating courtesy of the phytic acid and tannins present in nuts.
These compounds also make them too hard to digest, and within a short period, diarrhoea may result. This feeling of discomfort is especially common with starters.
Thus, sticking to a daily approved intake amount, or selecting sprouted nuts can help prevent these problems.
Is it strange? Yes, if you’re wondering, eating some nuts can lead to selenium poisoning. Specifically, Brazil nuts have high selenium levels, meaning too much intake is poisonous.
This mineral can cause breath to have an awful smell, breakable nails, and even induce muscle and joint aches.
Medically, the recommended size of these nuts that you should eat is four per day. The effect of toxicity does not occur with other types of nuts; you can freely eat them.
If you a have a nut allergy, be sure that all of the types can trigger life-threatening allergic reactions.
These persist into adulthood if they are discovered in childhood, and unfortunately, there’s still no cure for them yet.
Eating some of them might be hazardous for people who experience such allergies. Pregnant women shouldn’t avoid nuts and seeds for concerns of affecting their babies, but only if they’re allergic to the foodstuff.
Elevated Blood Pressure
This depends on what way nuts and seeds are eaten. Raw and non-salted ones can lower blood pressure, while those that are salted to enhance taste might increase blood pressure. To avoid this, opt for flavouring your nuts with herbs like chilli powder or seasoning instead of salt.
Additionally, nuts contain higher levels of omega-6 fatty acids as opposed to the much-needed omega-3s. This prevents our absorption of the latter and elevates blood pressure and aids blood clots that can be fatal.
Does the Type of Nuts You Eat Matter?
The types of nuts that people eat vary, and many might feel it doesn’t matter what kind you eat. Most of the nuts tend to be healthy, but the levels of nutritious elements differ. Here’s a breakdown of highly recommended and most healthful nuts:
- Peanuts. They are considered an excellent source of proteins and other nutrients. These include flavonoids, polyphenols, and antioxidants, all of which are beneficial to our health. They also contain fats, mainly mono and polyunsaturated fats (PUFAs), and minerals like iron, potassium, iron, and magnesium.
- Almonds. They are also very popular. They contain several nutrients, but less protein than peanuts. Almonds have monounsaturated fats and are rich in vitamins.
- Pistachios. These nuts are a rich source of healthy fatty acids, proteins, antioxidants, and other essential nutrients. One study noted that eating this type has a significant impact on blood pressure and endothelial enhancement, which might reduce heart-related risks. They have high PUFAs levels and considerable amounts of potassium when compared to other minerals.
- Cashews. Who doesn’t know these nuts? They’re creamy and form great snacks. They have high protein and fat content; majorly monounsaturated.
- Walnuts. These are low in carbohydrates, unlike others, but higher in calories because of the high fat composition. They are also an appropriate source of proteins, have little mineral amounts, and shown to contain phenolic acid.
- Hazelnuts. Their unique flavour makes them preferable in sweet foods. They have less protein and can assist in cholesterol reduction. Further, these nuts contain mostly monounsaturated fats and may have saturated ones as well.
How Can You Add Nuts and Seeds To The Diet?
People include various nuts and seeds to their diet for several health benefits. How do you incorporate them into the diet? Below are some ways to do so:
- Add them to trail mix. Trail mix is a beneficial snack that can consist of nuts. Roasted and salted nuts can improve its flavour and satiety. Raw nuts can be used for a blend having dried fruits. A sweet trail mix can help people with candy cravings to control those urges.
- Drink them in milk form. Drinking nut beverages can have substantial effects as the milk retain some of the taste and nutritious value of whole nuts.
- Sprinkle them on the salad. This can improve the protein and nutrient composition of the salad and make it more appealing.
- Spread nut butter. These are available for bread, sandwiches, or even smoothies. They’re very suitable for kids.
- Eat nuts as snacks. They are a perfect snack that can be eaten at any time. Even so, there’s a need to regulate the amounts taken.
As discussed above, nuts and seeds are part of the food that people eat to keep healthy. They have several benefits to our bodies and can protect us from different diseases. What of overeating nuts and seeds? The point is clear; it can result in adversities and should be avoided if possible!