Walnuts are exceedingly nutritious wrinkly nuts. They provide healthy fats, fibre, vitamins, and minerals and are usually eaten raw or toasted. There’s so much interest in this nut that scientists in the United States gather for an annual conference discussing the latest in walnut health research. Here are the health benefits of this nut.
Walnuts are rich in iron, calcium, copper, manganese, zinc, folate, and B vitamins. They also have potassium and magnesium. They also have higher antioxidant activity than any other common nut.
Rich in omega-3 fat
Walnuts have significantly higher omega-3 fats than any other nut. Studies show that eating omega-3 from plants lowers your risk of dying from heart disease by 10%.
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Walnuts may help prevent neurodegenerative conditions such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease which affect the brain’s functioning and as a result, overall quality of life.
One study found that antioxidants in the nut help reduce inflammation in the brain. Its chemical compounds and polyunsaturated fatty acids also provide the brain with key nutrients that play a role in preventing age-related brain disorders.
Heart and gut health
One study involving overweight adults with cardiovascular risk found that adding walnuts to their diets enhanced beneficial gut bacteria linked to reducing blood pressure and cholesterol.
Studies show that if the gut is rich in health-promoting bacteria then the person will not only have a healthy gut but good overall health. Unhealthy gut bacteria can contribute to inflammation and disease in the gut and elsewhere in the body.
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Inflammation is at the root of a variety of diseases including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, depression, arthritis and cancer. Antioxidants in walnuts fight inflammation as do the omega-3 fatty acids and magnesium in them so it is a great nut to eat if you have any condition linked to inflammation.
Lower cancer risk
Studies show that eating walnuts may reduce your risk of certain cancers including breast, prostate, and colorectal cancers. This is linked to their anti-inflammatory properties. It’s also linked to a compound called urolithins in them which may reduce the risk of hormone-related cancers like breast and prostate.
Lower blood pressure
One study found that people who ate whole walnuts experienced a reduction in central diastolic blood pressure which is the pressure that moves towards the heart.
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Lower type 2 diabetes risk
One study found that women who ate walnuts every month had a lower risk of diabetes than those who rarely ate them. Some studies suggest that even men may experience the same benefits.
Aids in weight loss
Although they are high in fats, they can help with weight loss if you keep the portion size low. The fat in them is healthy and they are high in fibre. Fibre has the effect of making the person feel fuller for longer which reduces snacking between meals which can help with weight loss. The right kind of fat also serves to stimulate the metabolic process and reduce the retention of bad cholesterol and unwanted fat.
Foods like walnut that are rich in magnesium and zinc have a positive effect on stress levels. They help the mind relax and think clearly, overall keeping the brain functioning properly. Omega-3 fatty acids in the nuts are important for the development and functioning of the nervous system. Research indicates that omega-3 fatty acids may play a role in certain mood disorders. More research is needed though.
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One study found that men who ate a mixture of nuts (walnuts, almonds, and hazelnuts) experienced a significant increase in orgasmic function and sexual desire.
Walnut consumption may also promote the production of melatonin in the body. Melatonin is a hormone that induces sleep and one that can help you maintain a healthy sleep cycle. Better Sleep: Foods To Eat And Foods To Avoid
While walnuts are a superfood, you should stay away from them if you are allergic to nuts or are on a low-calorie diet. Walnuts can be eaten on their own as a snack, used as topping for yoghurt, and even added into salads, stir-fries, vegetable dishes, and ice cream.
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You should also consider Walnuts for the following things.
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