Almonds pack a great punch when it comes to nutrition and energy. They are great source of fiber and one of the best snack since they are tasty and nutritious with plenty of health benefits. Almonds are loaded with minerals, protein and finer and they are considered among the healthiest of tree nuts. Just a handful of nutrient-rich almonds a day helps promote heart health and prevent weight gain. They can also help fight diseases like diabetes and Alzheimer’s. Let us see in details why almonds deserve more attention more you.
A research published in 2014 by British Journal of Nutrition mentioned how consumption of Almonds is beneficial for cardiovascular health. The study mentioned that taking 3.5 ounces of Almonds can help reduce chances of cardiovascular disease 10 years down the line. Almonds have fiber and many minerals which keep you healthy and keeps the LDL cholesterol levels down.
That is not all. There are many more health benefits associated with almond consumption. Let us see the nutrition profile of almonds first. Then we can have a look at the health benefits.
Nutrition Profile of Almonds
Around 23 grams of almonds which is around one-ounce serving (about 23 almonds) contains the following –
- 5 grams of protein
- 3 grams of fiber
- 11.3 grams of fat out of which more than 7 grams is monounsaturated fat.
- Contains healthy quantities of Vitamin B1, B2, B3, B6 and B12.
- Vitamin E which is around 40 percent of the Daily Value (DV) need.
- Riboflavin (20 percent DV)
It also contains the following minerals
- Magnesium (20 percent DV)
- Calcium (8 percent DV)
- Potassium (6 percent DV)
- Copper (26 percent DV)
- Manganese (27 percent DV)
Health Benefits of Almonds
Blood Pressure Control
Potassium is very useful in controlling blood pressure. Almonds contain Potassium which can help you to reduce elevated blood pressure. Presence of magnesium also help in blood pressure reduction.
Almonds contains fiber and fat which do not allow the blood sugar levels to go high too soon by delaying the absorption of food. The high fat content and the fiber also ensure that you do not feel too hungry after you have had almonds as snacks. These two factors are very important factor of weight loss regimen. Almonds can help you towards your weight loss plans.
Manganese, copper and riboflavin increases the metabolism which helps in burning off the calories faster.
As mentioned in the previous point fiber in almonds do not allow the blood sugar to rise too fast. This helps the diabetes patients who want to keep their blood sugar levels down after eating food. If you want to keep your blood sugar from rising to quickly you can consider fiber supplements such as metamucil, benefiber or organic fiber smart. When blood sugar is kept under control for long duration most diabetes patients see gradual decrease of A1C levels which is a indicator of blood sugar levels for past three months and tell you how well controlled your blood glucose levels are.
However, another thing that sets almonds apart from other similar foods , is their remarkably high amount of magnesium. Magnesium can reduce insulin sensitivity which is the major indicator of diabetes. Many treatments of diabetes depend of reducing insulin resistance and almonds can help you do that naturally.
Most cancers are caused by free radicals. As per the current research foods rich in antioxidants can help in controlling and removing free radicals. Most green and bright colored vegetables and fruits can help in providing antioxidants. Almonds are also great source of antioxidants. One study recorded by american society of nutrition has shown that around 80 grams of almonds can reduce oxidative stress and DNA damage in smokers in just 4 weeks. The study can be found here.
Another reason almonds help in cancer prevention is due to the fiber content which can help in pushing the food out of the colon fast which can prevent build up toxins in the colon. Clean colon can help in reducing the chances of colon cancer.
Reduces Alzheimer Risk
Studies have shown that Vitamin E consumption can help in reducing the risk of Alzheimer which is a degenerative brain disease. Since almonds are rich source of Vitamin E consuming them regularly will protect your brain from this disease.
Make Your Skin Beautiful
Did you know that most skin care products use Vitamin E as the main ingredient to make the skin shine and wrinkle free. Vitamin E prevents and reduce the damage to cell walls. Since almonds are good source of Vitamin E they help you keep your skin cells healthy. You can also used almond oil for massage to have a smooth and baby like skin for a long time.
Almonds Increase Male Libido
If you are a male and want to increase libido, you should eat more almonds. Almonds are rich in arginine. In south asian countries wrestlers eat around 150 pods of almonds everyday to increase strength and stamina.
Did you know that in India the bride offers the groom a glass of almond milk on the first night. It is believed that almond milk increases the virility and sexual stamina. Different from testosterone, which is a hormone; arginine is an amino acid that primarily affects erections and sexual potency in men. As testosterone levels dip with age, so does sex drive. According to “The Natural Testosterone Plan: For Sexual Health and Energy” by Stephen Harrod Buhner, snacking on almonds not only helps promote testosterone production, it can also assist male arousal.
Is almond milk as good as almonds?
Almond milk is made by mixing Almonds with water, blending them and then straining the liquid. However most almond milk contains far less nutrition value as compared to almonds. Moreover many brands add sweeteners and vitamins as well as flavors.
Some thickeners are also added to the almond milk available commercially. This means it is not as good as having the almond itself. You can easily make almond milk at home and add your own flavor. This will be much healthier than what you get in stores. However remember that nutrition value of almond milk will still remain lesser than the real almonds.