By Angela C. Torrence, RDH and nutritionist
Some people have a negative opinion of nuts due to their higher fat content but the truth of it is, nuts provide a great source of fiber, vitamins and minerals, plant proteins, and unsaturated fatty acids. In fact, there is evidence to suggest that nuts help curb your appetite which may compensate for the higher fat content especially when they are eating them as a snack. One recent study put out by The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition examined 27 different studies related to nut consumption in its relation to ischemic heart disease (IHD) and diabetes. The study reported that consumers who had four weekly servings (28.4g/1 oz) of nuts had a significantly lower risk for fatal and nonfatal IHD and had a significantly reduced risk for diabetes.
One interesting note about nut consumption is that preparation of nuts impacts the way the nuts are processed in the body. A second study put out by The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reported that if your main concern with eating nuts is to hold you over and stave off hunger, then eating nuts whole is the best way. On the other hand, if you are trying to maximize nutrient intake, then chopped, sliced, or ground nuts are best. The study mentioned that the breakdown of peanuts in the stomach differs based upon the cooking technique. For example, disintegration rates going from fastest to slowest are as follows: fried, roasted, boiled, and raw.
While it may not make up a major part of your nutrition, nuts should definitely be included in your well-balanced diet. Here are 30 ways to include nuts into your life. Enjoy!
Basics and Nut Staples
- Nut Milks
- Nut Butters **amazing!
- Fresh Basil Pesto
- Not-So Cheese Sauce *one of my favorite go-to recipes
- Savory or Sweet Cashew Cream
- Guinness Beer Nuts
- Sweet, Salty, Spicy Party Nuts
- Spiced Glazed Nuts and Pretzel Mix
- Maple Rosemary Cocktail Nuts
- Chocolate Peanut Butter Swirl Bark
Soups and Meals
- Raw Zucchini Lasagne: vegan
- Mast’o Khiar – Persian Cucumber and Walnut Soup
- Cold Garlic Almond Soup with Coriander and Lime
On the Go
- Raw Apple Pie *I love to make this
- 5 Minute Raw Chocolate Tart
- Poteca Nut Roll
- Cowboy (chocolate chip) Cookies
- Russian Tea Cakes
- Cinnamon Pecan Rolls
- Peaches with Vanilla Ginger Cashew Cream and Pistachios
- Chunky Cinnamon Nut Ice Cream
- Holiday Nut Wreath
- Mice Pinecone Friends (ornaments)
- Leaf and Nut Mobiles *great activity for kids to help with
So, it’s easy to incorporate nuts into your diet. For healthy recipes, go to Arizona Farm Bureau’s Fill Your Plate.