Archive for the ‘Nuts’ category

Walnuts: Health Benefits

When considering walnuts’ health benefits, we can see that they are a favourite and well known food for many – not only do they look similar to the human brain organ, but also many have considered them to be healthy to it and other organs as well. In an animal test, in aged rats, they ate a diet containing 2 to 6% walnuts and they improved not only with age-associated motor function, but cognitive function as well – however, it was said that a 9% walnut diet actually was reported to impair performance. Looking at the nutritional constituents of this food, we can see that they have omega 3 and antioxidants. It has been stated by the American College of Nutrition that both walnuts and also walnut oil have the ability to improve one’s reaction regarding stress.

In another report, on the 11th October, 2006, Science Daily gave a report saying that a handful of raw walnuts that were along with meals at a high level of saturated fats appeared to reduce the capacity of harmful fat being damaging to arteries. It should be noted that the funding for this study was by the California Walnut Commission and that also the lead researcher who was an MD and PhD called Emilio Ros stressed that this dietary method should not be seen as a band aid and instead that people should avoid unhealthy foods in the first place.

It has been said that comparing walnuts’ health benefits to other specific types of nuts, that they contain the largest amounts of antioxidants, which includes free antioxidants and also antioxidants bound to fiber. In more specific detail, it is reported here: “http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/nut-and-seed-products/3138/2″, that for every 117 g, walnuts give 639 calories, 18 g of protein, 11% of a calcium and 19% of an iron RDA. Dietary fiber is also given as being at 8 g per 117 g and sugars at 3g.

(reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walnut)

Are Pistachios Good For You?

Are pistachios good for you? The pistachio nut is a very popular type of food that many might be familiar with as a snack.  The pistachio plant itself is reported to be a desert plant, that is very able to cope with saline soil – it is said that long and hot summers are necessary for proper fruit ripening. In terms of the way that the kernel may be eaten, this can either be fresh, roasted or also salted – they may be used in unusual items such as ice cream or halva; in America, they are used to make pistachio salad. Globally, it is reported that China is the main consumer around the world at 80,000 tonnes yearly.

It is reported that in July of 2003, the FDA accepted the claim that nuts such as pistachios in conjunction with a low saturated fat and cholesterol diet might reduce the danger of heart disease. At Pennsylvania State University, pistachios largely lowered amounts of low-densitylipoprotein (LDL cholesterol) whilst also making antioxidant amounts higher in serum of volunteers. It has also been reported by studies that 32-63 grams each day of pistachios can to a large extent increase plasma levels for lutein, as well as alpha-carotene, additionally beta-carotene and finally gamma-tocopherol.

Furthermore, as regards the question: “Are Pistachios Good For You?” for specific nutritional constituents of pistachios, in analysis of 100 g of dry roasted nuts, which did not have salt added to them, the calorie amount was 571 kcal, carbohydrates 27.65 g, fat 45.97 g and protein 21.35 g. In terms of the B vitamin content, they are said to have 0.84 mg of vitamin B1 (US RDA 73%), 0.158 mg of vitamin B2 (13%), 1.425 mg of vitamin B3 (10%), 0.513 mg of vitamin B5 (10%), 1.274 mg of vitamin B6 (98%), and finally 50 µg of vitamin B9 (13%). Some of the other constituents are calcium at 110 mg or 11%, iron at 4.2 mg or 32%, magnesium at 120 mg or 34%, phosphorus at 485 mg or 69%, potassium at 1042 mg or 22% and zinc at 2.3 mg or 24%.

 (reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pistachio)

Pine Nut Nutrition

Pine nuts are a food that is derived from pine trees. It is said that approximately 20 pine species make seeds which are big enough in order to be harvested. It is observed, that pine nuts are often added to fish, meat, salads and vegetables, as well as being baked into bread. There are different types of pine nut, such as the Nevada/Great Basin pine nut, that is liked for its big size, sweetness and ease to peel. In the Middle East, they are used in a wide range of dishes such as kibbeh, sambusek and also baklava as well as many others.

In relation to pine nut nutrition, they are said to provide per 100 grammes, a high 874 kcal, relative to other types of nuts. Moreover, their carbohydrate level is 16.99 grammes, fat amount 88.79 grammes and protein 17.78 grammes. Looking at their vitamin levels, we can see that they have 41% of the RDA or .0473 milligrams for vitamin B1. Moreover, for vitamin B2, they are at 25% or 0.295 milligrams. In addition, for vitamin B3, it is at 38% and 5.697 milligrams. Some other B vitamins with lower amounts are vitamin B5, with 0.406 milligrams (8%), vitamin B6 with 9% or 0.122 milligrams and additionally vitamin B9 with 44 µg or 11%. Moreover there are other nutrients also, such as choline at 72.5 milligrams or 15%, vitamin E being 12.12 milligrams or 81%, vitamin K at 70 µg or 67%, calcium at 21 milligrams or 2% and iron at 7.18 milligrams or 55%. Furthermore, magnesium is at 326 milligrams or 92%, manganese is at 11.431 milligrams or 544%, phosphorus is at 747 milligrams or 107% and potassium at 775 milligrams or 16% – finally zinc is at 8.38 milligrams or 88%.

Thus, we can see that pine nut nutrition has  many constituents. However, as a cautionary note, it is said that some pine nuts grown in China can make taste disturbances from a few days up to some weeks after consumption – it is said to be like a metallic taste. It has been guessed by the Nestlé Research Centre that the Pinus armandii species is to blame. it is said that cases are self-limited and that they can resolve without any treatment.

(reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pine_nut)

Pecan Nuts – Health Benefits

Pecan nuts are said to derive their name from an Algonquian word referring to that they need a stone in order to crack them. As regards pecan nuts’ health benefits, they are said to be high in omega-6 fatty acids – however, that being said, they have approximately half that of walnuts. It is said that for women by having a diet rich with pecans that this can reduce the danger for gallstones. Moreover, it is said that pecans’ antioxidants and plants sterols assist in lower high cholesterol by lowering “bad” LDL cholesterol amounts. In fact, in September 2001, the Journal of Nutrition published clinical research which stated that by consuming one handful of pecan nuts daily, that could have the same reductive effect for cholesterol levels as would regular cholesterol reducing medication. Moreover, the University of Georgia stated that pecans have plant sterols that are understood to have a cholesterol-reducing capacity. In addition to that information, it is also reported that pecans might help neurologically. It is said that by daily consumption of this food, that could slow age connected muscle nerve degeneration. This study was undertaken by the University of Massachusetts – it was published within Current Topics, Nutraceutical Research.

Looking in more detail at pecan nuts’ health benefits and the nutritional qualities of this food, we can see that per 100 g, it is possible to receive 690 kcal. Equally, if we look at carbohydrates, this gives 13.86 g, fat 71.97 g and protein 9.17 g. In relation to the vitamin content for this food, we can view that B1 is provided at 0.66 mg or 57% of the US RDA, B2 at .13 mg or 11%, B3 at 1.167 mg or 8%, B5 at 0.863 mg or 17%, B6 at 0.21 mg or 16% and B9 at 22 µg or 6%. In addition, as well as some vitamin C, E and K, calcium is at 70 mg or 7%, iron at 2.5 mg or 19%, magnesium at 121 mg or 34%, manganese at 4.5 mg or 214%, phosphorus at 277 mg or 40%, potassium at 410 mg or 9% and finally zinc at 4.53 mg or 48%.

(reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pecan)

Health Benefits Of Macadamia Nuts

The macadamia nut was named for John Macadam, who was a colleague with Ferdinand von Mueller, the botanist who had initially described this genus. Looking at the health benefits of macadamia nuts, for their nutritional content per 100g, we can see that their fat amount is 74 g and thus can be seen to be high in fat. Moreover, their protein level is at 9.2 g. It can also be noted that they are reported to have the largest quantity of helpful monounsaturated fats for any known nut. Moreover, they are said to also contain 22% for omega-7 Palmitoleic acid and it is asserted that the health effect of this is similar to saturated fat. In relation to their energy content, this can be seen to be 740 kcal per 100 g.

In relation to the health benefits of macadamia nuts, for their vitamin content, they are said to provide 27% of the US RDA for adults as regards vitamin E, which is at 4 mg for every 100 g. Furthermore, calcium is at 64 mg, which is 6% of the RDA. In addition, iron is at 2 mg or 15% of the RDA. Additional to all this, we can see that phosphorus is at 241 mg or 34% of the RDA and moreover potassium at 410 mg or 9% of the RDA. Further to all this data, they also have 7.9 g carbohydrate in addition.

As a domestic health note one can observe that macadamias are reported to be toxic for dogs. If they ingest them, this might result in macadamia nut toxicosis that could give weakness, plus hind limb paralysis and also them being unable to stand from within 12 hours of taking in the food. Moreover, relative to the amount consumed they may have muscle tremors as well as pains in their joints and also great abdominal pain.

(reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Macadamia)

Hazelnuts: Nutrition Facts

This food which is popularly used in chocolate, is also similar to chestnuts and acorns used to feed livestock. It is said that Turkey is by a long way the largest producer in the world of this nut. Looking at hazelnuts’ nutrition facts, we can see that they give 628 kcal per 100 g and can thus serve as a reasonable energy source. Moreover, they have 16.7 g of carbohydrates. Dietary fiber was at 11g per 100 grammes. In relation to the fat in this food, it is at 60.75, with saturated at 4.464g, monounsaturated at 45.652 g and polyunsaturated at 7.92 g. Protein is at 14.95 grammes and water 5.31 grammes.

Looking at hazelnuts’ nutrition facts re: vitamin content, we can see that vitamin A is at negligible amounts as regards the US adult RDA is concerned. Conversely, vitamin B1 was at 0.643 mg being 56%, and in addition vitamin B2 was at 0.113 mg at 9%. In addition, niacin (B3) was at 1.8 mg or 12%. Furthermore, panothenic acid (B5) was at 0.918 mg or 18%; additionally vitamin B6 was given at 0.563 mg or 43%. Moreover, vitamin B was at 113 mg or 28%. Additionally vitamin C was also available at 6.3 mg or 8%.

Vitamin E was well represented at 15.03 mg or 100% and also vitamin K was give at 14.2 µg or 14%. In addition, calcium was at 114 mg or 11%. Iron was furthermore given at 4.7mg or 36%. As well as all this nutrition, magnesium was given at 163 mg being 46%, manganese was shown to be 6.175 mg at 294%, phosphorus was at 290 mg or 41% and potassium was shown as 680 mg being 41%. Finally, Zinc was given at 2.45 mg or 26%. Thus, it can be seen that hazelnuts may have an important role in relation to their nutrition. They may also be known as “filberts”.

(reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hazelnut)

Chestnuts: Nutritional Value

Looking at chestnuts’ nutritional value, we can observe that for 100 grams, they are said to give around 180 calories. It is noted that this is in fact a lot lower than walnuts, almonds and other nuts – moreover dried fruits are said to be about 600 kcal for every 100 grams. They are said to have very little fat and what it is, is said to be unsaturated and without gluten in addition.

It is reported that their carbohydrate content is comparable with wheat and rice. Moreover, it it is said that there is double the amount of starch as potatoes have. In addition, it is said that sugars have around 8% for different sugars, that are in the majority sucrose, as well as glucose and fructose, plus to a smaller amount both stachyose, in addition to raffinose. In terms of their name, in some places they are also called “the bread tree”. At a time when they are just ripening, they may be largely starch and a lot firm to pressure by fingers, due to the high water content.

However, in regard to chestnuts’ nutritional value, as they begin to ripen, this starch is said to gradually change into sugars and also moisture content also starts to reduce. When the chestnut is squeezed. they can have a small “give” and the hull has less tension – plus in addition there is a small area between it and the flesh of the fruit. In this process, water is being substituted with sugars. Chestnuts are reported to possess vitamin C, giving around 40 mg for each 100g. When fresh, chestnuts may have approximately 52% water in relation to weight and it is said that this will quickly evaporate during storage – for instance, it is said that they can reduce by about 1% weight a day at 20 °C and with a 70% relative humidity.

As regards to how they may be eaten, they may be peeled and subsequently eaten raw – however it is asserted that they might be to some extent astringent, particularly if the pellicle is not extracted. Quite popularly, they may also be roasted which does not need peeling and once they are cooked, the texture can be said to be similar to a baked potato in addition to having a sweet flavour. Moreover, chestnuts can be made into flour. For instance in Corsica, they are made into fried fritters known as fritelli.

(reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chestnut)

Are Cashews Good For You?

Are Cashews Good For You? A popular type of food, cashews can be eaten in different ways, such as on their own, as well as for example covered by chocolate. It is reported that they are commonly used in Indian cooking such as garnishing sweets/curries and also as a paste for example in korma. It can also be noted that cashew apples can be taken raw/put in curries. In addition to Indian cooking, cashews may also be a feature of Thai and Chinese food. The origin of the word was apparently from the Portuguese: “caju” relating to a cashew tree’s fruit – these days it is grown widely in tropical climates for both the fruit and nut.

Of note in relation to natural health remedies (although of course one would probably need specialist advice to use them safely), the Patamona from Guyana are reported to use different parts of the plant medicinally. For instance, the bark can be used by scraping it and soaking it during the night and then it being boiled to be an antidiarrheal. Moreover, it is said that the seeds are made into a power to be used as snake bite antivenom. Furthermore, it has been said that the nut oil can be applied topically to be used for an antifungal.

Looking at the nutritional content of this food in relation to the question: “Are Cashews Good For You?”, within cashew nuts, the monounsaturated amount is 54% (18:1) and polyunsaturated fat 18% (18:2). Moreover, the saturated fat is 16% with 9% of that being palmitic acid (16:0) and 7% stearic acid (18:0). In terms of their other values, per 100 grammes, they give 553 kcal, carbohydrates at 30.19 g, sugars at 5.91 g and dietary fiber at 3.3 g. Moreover, fat is at 43.85 g and protein at 18.22 g. In relation to the US adult recommendations, we can see that Thiamine is given at .42 mg or 37%, magnesium at 292 mg with 82% and zinc at 5.78 mg at 61%. In addition, there is also a wide range of other nutrients that this food provides in addition. Thus, we can see that cashew nuts can be the source of much nutrition.

(reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cashew_nut)

Brazil Nuts: Benefits

The Brazil nut is a popular nut and one that you the reader may well have eaten before. With its distinctive name, one might assume that the main exporter could have been Brazil, however it has been apparently Bolivia. It may also be of note, that whilst cooks may classify the Brazil nut to be a nut, actually botanists may instead think of it as a seed due to that nut shells split in half and the meat being separate from the shell.

Looking at Brazil nuts’ benefits in relation to nutrition, we can see that they have 18% protein according to their weight, with also 13% carbohydrates and 69% fat additionally. It is stated that 91% of the calories from Brazil nuts come from fat. In terms of the percentages for fat, it is said to be approximately 25% for saturated, 41% for monounsaturated and last of all 34% for polyunsaturated. It is stated that Brazil nuts’ saturated fat content is within the highest for nuts above macadamia nuts, which are mainly monounsaturated and also they are used for oil. It is said that due to their rich taste, cooks can use Brazil nuts for a replacement of macadamia nuts/coconut within recipes.

Moreover, because they have a high polyunsaturated fat amount, which is mainly omega 6, Brazil nuts which have been shelled may soon start to get rancid. Brazil nuts’ benefits include that they are purported to be a useful source of certain vitamins and minerals. For example, if one takes a cup of the nuts (133g), they may have 0.8 mg of thiamin and 7.6 mg of vitamin E. Moreover, calcium can be 213 mg, additionally magnesium at 500 mg, phosphorus at 946 mg, copper at 2.3 mg and last of all manganese at 1.6 mg. Additionally, Brazil nuts are meant to be very high in selenium (perhaps the best known) with one ounce giving 10x the USRDA – however, the actual amount per Brazil nut intake could vary. It has been said that selenium can reduce breast/prostate cancer and thus some nutritionists have suggested to intake them for protection – however it is reported that some investigations have not been conclusive on the effects for prostate cancer.

In addition to all these constituents, Brazil nuts also have a high amount of phytic acid with 2-6% for dry weight. It is said that this constituent can prevent absorbing some nutrients, primarily iron – however, apparently the jury has still been out on its overall benefit. It is also stated that Brazil nuts can have small quantities of radium – this radioactive amount was very small – 1-7 pCi/g – 40-260 Bq/kg and the largest amount of this was not retained – however, it is said to still be over one thousand times greater than other foods – it has been asserted that this is due to the extensive roots for the trees.

(reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brazil_nut)

Almond Nutritional Benefits

Famous from being in foods such as marzipan, almonds are a food that whilst people may not have had them in their raw state, they might have incorporated into other foods. In terms of almond nutritional benefits, sweet almonds have around 26% carbohydrates, with also dietary fiber at 12%, sugars at 6.3% and starch at 0.7%, with the rest being miscellaneous carbohydrates. One cup of almond flour may can contain 20 grams of carbohydrates with 10 g being dietary fiber. Thus it is stated that almond flour can be useful for recipes of cake/bread with people consuming a carbohydrate limited diet. Almonds are given a lot of attention in some cultures, for instance in Jammu and Kashmir, which is a northern Indian state, it is apparently the state tree of that location. Moreover, it is mentioned reportedly many times in the Bible, such as in Genesis 43:11.

Looking at their nutrition, almonds are said to be high in vitamin E, having 26mg/100 g. They are also stated to be high in B vitamins, as well as essential minerals and moreover monounsaturated fat which is reported to be a “good fat” that could reduce LDL cholesterol. Similar to nuts/seeds, almonds are also said to have phytosterosis, which is connected with cholesterol lowering.

There are various almond nutritional benefits in regard to general health, which it should be noted may not have been scientifically validated. These can include a better complexion and also perhaps a lower rate of cancer in addition. It has been initially reported that consumption of almonds may increase high density lipoproteins and decrease additionally low density lipoproteins. It is said that almonds may give an allergy or intolerance. It is asserted that “cross-reactivity” is similar to peach allergens and also tree nut allergens. It is reported that symptoms may be local such as oral allergy and also systemic, such as anaphylaxis.

(reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Almond#Nut)