Heart Healthy Nuts

February 5, 2019

Nuts are a better-for-you snack option. Many studies have shown that nuts provide various health benefits — especially in regards to reducing heart disease risk factors. Studies have shown that adding 30 grams per day of nuts to a Mediterranean diet lowers risk of heart disease by 30 percent.

Though they’re usually high in fat, it’s the healthy type of fat. The best nuts to lower your cholesterol have the highest amounts of unsaturated fats and the lowest amount of saturated fats.  Eating tree nuts is associated with lower waist circumference, body mass index and blood pressure. It’s important to keep these things under control to help prevent heart disease.

Since February is American Heart Month, we’re featuring some of our favorite nuts with heart healthy benefits:

Walnuts

Research by highly-respected scientific and clinical experts has continued to reveal that walnuts are truly a “Super Food.” Walnuts are loaded with essential Omega-3s that can help reduce the potential for hear t disease, cancer, stroke, diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity and clinical depression. They are also an excellent source of fiber, magnesium, protein, and phosphorus, as well as the antioxidant selenium. Eating raw walnuts is one of the easiest things a person can do to improve their health.

 

Pecans

Some people avoid pecans because they are often associated with indulgent desserts, but on their own, pecans offer unique nutritional perks, including high levels of antioxidants that have been tied to heart benefits. Pecans are rich in fiber which boosts the health of your heart by reducing the risk of coronary heart disease. They are also full of magnesium which is known for its anti-inflammatory benefits and to help lower blood pressure.

 

Peanuts

Peanuts are heart-healthy, which may surprise people since they are legumes and not tree nuts. Peanuts contain high amounts of unsaturated fat and lower amounts of saturated fat. Peanuts are also a good source of protein and have zero cholesterol.

 

Pine Nuts

Pine nuts are high in beneficial monounsaturated fats, magnesium and vitamin E, which work together to protect the heart. Pine nuts also naturally contain plant sterols, a compound that can help lower low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol levels.

 

Macadamia Nuts

The uniquely flavorful and creamy taste of a raw macadamia nut is one-of-a-kind. They are loaded with protein and calcium. Macadamia nut oil contains Omega-3, known to reduce the risk of heart disease and high blood pressure.

 

Almonds

Almonds are one of the world’s most nutritious and versatile nuts, renowned for their many health benefits and culinary uses. They provide a healthy snack that’s packed with protein, fiber, calcium, zinc, and antioxidants. Medical research also shows that raw almonds can lower the risk of heart problems since they’re a good source of monounsaturated fats.

 

Cashews

Cashew nuts, like all nuts, are an excellent source of protein and fiber. They are rich in monounsaturated fat which may help protect the heart too. Cashews are also a good source of potassium, a variety of B vitamins and folate.

Tags: healthy nuts, heart healthy nuts, heart month

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