Did you know Nuts are good for you!

It’s a shame that we only get the nutcrackers out at Christmas, because freshly shelled nuts contain a wealth of nutrients.

Take walnuts for example. Making them part of a balanced diet can help counteract the damage to arteries caused by fatty food as they contain a nutrient called arginine that helps the body produce nitric oxide.

Other nutritious nuts include Almonds (high in protein, iron, calcium, vitamin E, zinc, and vitamin B2).

Those that know me know Almonds are my favourite nut!

Hazel nuts are high in fibre, calcium, magnesium, and vitamin E2.

Brazil nuts are one of the richest natural sources of selenium, vital for healthy thyroid hormone metabolism.

walnut

almonds hazelnut Brazil nut

Research carried out at the University of Rovira i Virgili in Spain has shown that adding nuts to a Mediterranean type diet; (which is eating plenty of vegetables, cereal crops, fruit and olive oil, whilst cutting down on dairy produce and red meat) can improve your health. In the study the volunteers were reassessed after a year to see whether their health had improved. They found that 13.7% of those eating their daily bag of nuts as well as the Mediterranean diet had improved.

Even though none of the participants' weight had dropped significantly over the year, waist circumferences had diminished in the nut-eating group, and cholesterol and blood pressure levels had dropped. The researchers said that the nuts may have been helping to cut the amount of chronic inflammation linked to their weight.

Super Squirrel

However, a spokesman for the British Dietetic Association warned that the findings did not give people licence to eat large quantities of nuts in the hope this would improve their health.

"You can't just sit on the sofa and eat nuts - you should be making sure that if you add this many calories to you diet, you should take them out somewhere else if possible.”

"People should also be careful not eat too may salted nuts, as that certainly is no good for your blood pressure."

So bear in mind that nuts are quite high in fat, so its the same story - everything in moderation as part of a balanced lifestyle!

Source: Dr M Glenville’s Health Digest ‘Natural News for Women’ BBC News – Health http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/7767753.stm

Until next month - don't go too nuts!!