Walnuts may be small in size when it comes to food options, but they are full of big benefits. These delicious and nutritious nuts possess properties that help with weight, metabolism, diabetes, brain health, cancer prevention, and so much more.
Many people do not realize how beneficial they are and are sadly missing out, but it’s time to put walnuts back on the menu. Here’s what you need to know.
Walnuts have long been thought to be brain food, mostly because of their wrinkled appearance. It is not entirely true that these seeds can enhance your intelligence, but studies have shown that they do promote brain function.
On top of this, they are full of antioxidants and proteins that deliver a multitude of health benefits.
Walnuts are richer in polyunsaturated fats than other nuts, particularly omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. They are also a rich source of vitamins C and B6, niacin, folate, calcium, iron, potassium, phosphorus, zinc, and magnesium.
That is a lot of nutrition packed into one small package. Also delivering fiber and essential minerals, like beta-carotene, walnuts are more than brain food; they are the ultimate “power food.” Here’s what walnuts can do for you:
1. Improved Heart Health
Walnuts are rich in amino acids and omega-3 fatty acids, which help to prevent coronary heart diseases. They provide a healthy lipid supply, as opposed to unhealthy fats common in the American diet.
Eating walnuts lowers the LDL (bad) cholesterol levels and increases HDL (good) cholesterol which prevents high blood pressure and protects you from cardiovascular problems.
2. Antioxidant Power
When it comes to antioxidant-rich foods, walnuts are ranked second, after blackberries. The antioxidants in walnuts have amazing free-radical scavenging powers that can prevent liver damage.
Free radicals are a natural product of metabolism but they can cause widespread oxidative damage to cells and tissues. Increasing your antioxidant intake protects you from this damage, allowing your organs to function at optimal levels.
3. Weight Management
Walnuts have the ability to make you feel full after consuming a small amount. The rich source of protein and fiber increases satiety while delivering a host of benefits, making it the perfect snack.
Using walnuts as a snacking option can benefit those struggling with obesity and diabetes to help keep snacking at a minimum. This can promote weight loss, which will improve both conditions.
4. Control Diabetes
Nuts, in general, have an inverse relationship to the risk of developing type-2 diabetes. This means that walnuts can be consumed on a regular basis without you having to worry about putting on weight or exacerbating your diabetes.
Walnuts are full of the good polyunsaturated fats that you want and can support a healthy lifestyle, which protects you from developing diabetes or helps you to better control it.
5. Improved Male Fertility
Walnuts have a positive impact on male fertility by improving sperm quality, quantity, vitality, and motility.
6. Improved Metabolism
Along with essential fatty acids, walnuts also have minerals like magnesium, copper, potassium, iron, zinc, and calcium. These all contribute to metabolic processes within your body, encouraging healthy growth and development, digestion, and nucleic acid synthesis.
7. Cancer Prevention
Walnuts have the amazing ability to control the growth of cancer cells in your body. This is the result of phenolic compounds, omega-3 fatty acids, and other powerful antioxidants in these nuts.
Phenolic compounds are found in plants and plant-based foods, such as walnuts, and provide extensive cancer-fighting properties. They have a direct effect on the cancer cell cycle, thus preventing these dangerous cells from metastasizing or developing into a tumor.
8. Reduce Inflammation
Inflammation is a natural response your body initiates to protect you from invading organisms. However, too much inflammation can cause serious damage to your cells and tissues and is linked to a variety of serious diseases.
The polyphenol compounds and phytochemical substances in walnuts help to reduce the effects of inflammation in your body. If you suffer from inflammatory diseases, such as arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, asthma, and various allergies, adding walnuts to your diet can ease symptoms.
9. Enhance Digestion
The antioxidants in walnuts help to cleanse your body of toxins and promote efficient removal of waste. This cleansing of your digestive tract paves the way for efficient digestion and optimal absorption, so you can get the most from the foods you eat.
On top of all that, walnuts have also been linked to relieving constipation.
10. Improve Sleep
Sleep is necessary for your body to recharge, so irregular sleep patterns can increase your risk of illness. Walnuts make melatonin, which is the hormone responsible for inducing and regulating sleep.
Adding walnuts to your dinner can promote satiety and prep you for a great, restful sleep.
11. Mood Booster
A lack of omega- 3 fatty acids can have a strange effect on your brain and mood, as you can experience hyperactivity and irritability. Walnuts are perfect for adults and children alike when it comes to elevating moods, balancing hormones, and battling stress and depression.
The vitamin E content in walnuts allows them to maintain and protect your skin from radicals and prevent wrinkles. Regular use of walnut oil can also help to lighten dark circles under your eyes.
When it comes to your hair, walnuts possess the ability to strengthen follicles to promote longer, thicker, and stronger hair. You can also use the husk to lighten your hair and avoid the damaging effects of hair dyes.
There is a lot to gain from adding walnuts to your diet. They can be easily added to meals or make the perfect snack.
Delivering essential nutrients, invaluable health benefits, great taste, and versatility—walnuts are the ultimate package. Being small in size doesn’t stop walnuts from packing a big punch. They are exploding with health benefits, and you would be nuts not to go out and get some.