There are vitamins, minerals, calcium, and fiber in almonds, and so they can have a range of health benefits. Only a handful of almonds, approximately 1 ounce, provides one eighth of the daily protein requirements of a person.
People may eat raw or toasted almonds as a snack or add them to dishes that are sweet or savory. Sliced, flaked, slivered, including flour, oil, butter, or almond milk are also available.
Almonds are called nuts, but they are seeds rather than actual nuts.
One of the earliest trees that people grew may have been almond trees. In Jordan, archaeologists have found evidence dating back some 5,000 years of domesticated almond trees.
Check out some of the reasons for almonds being a safe choice in this post.
Scientists have associated many possible health advantages with almonds.
1) Almonds and cholesterol
Almonds are high in fat, but they are unsaturated. The risk of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) or “bad” cholesterol is not increased by this form of fat.
The American Heart Association (AHA) states that unsaturated fats can boost the blood cholesterol status of an individual in moderation.
Almonds, however, do not contain cholesterol.
A 2005 study indicates that eating almonds can:
- Increasing the levels of vitamin E in plasma and red blood cells
- Lower overall levels of cholesterol
Vitamin E, according to these researchers, is an antioxidant that can help avoid the process of oxidation that causes the arteries to be clogged with cholesterol.
Further studies have found similar results.
A 2018 review authors note that the nutrients in almonds can help increase or maintain high-density lipoprotein (HDL) or “good” cholesterol levels. To preserve heart health, they advised individuals to eat about 45 grams (g) of almonds a day.
2) Almonds and cancer risk
In contrast with those who did not, the authors found a two to three times lower risk of breast cancer among people who ate higher amounts of peanuts, walnuts, and almonds.
They concluded that “peanuts, walnuts, and almonds seem to be a protective factor for breast cancer development.”
3) Almonds and heart disease
Almonds, along with other nuts and seeds, can help to boost blood levels of lipids or fat. Heart health will benefit from this.
In a 2014 study, scientists found that almonds greatly increased bloodstream antioxidant levels, lowered blood pressure, and improved blood flow. All stable males from 20-70 years of age who took 50 g of almonds a day for 4 weeks were the participants.
The researchers believe this may be due to:
- vitamin E, healthy fats, and fiber, which help a person feel full
- the antioxidant impact of flavonoids
To gain these advantages, they recommend eating a handful of almonds a day.
The risk of cardiac failure is increased by high blood pressure. What foods will help an individual lower his or her blood pressure?
4) Almonds and vitamin E
Almonds contain vitamin E levels that are relatively high. Vitamin E contains antioxidants, such as tocopherol. One ounce (28.4 g) of plain almonds offers 7.27 milligrams (mg) of vitamin E, which is the daily requirement of about half a person.
Vitamin E and other antioxidants help prevent the body from suffering from oxidative damage. If too many free radicals accumulate, this damage will occur.
Free radicals are caused by natural processes in the body and environmental stresses. Many of them can be removed by the body, but dietary antioxidants help to remove them, too. Oxidative stress can be caused by high levels of free radicals, resulting in cells being impaired. This can contribute to different illnesses and health issues.
A 2016 review states that alpha-tocopherol, one antioxidant in vitamin E, can play a role in reducing cancer risk. However, more studies are needed to confirm this, as overall results have been inconsistent.
5) Almonds and blood sugar
There is some evidence that almonds can help regulate levels of blood sugar.
There are low levels of magnesium in many people with type 2 diabetes. For those who have trouble controlling their blood sugar levels, a flaw is prevalent. Scientists suggest there may be a link between magnesium deficiency and insulin resistance.
20 individuals with type 2 diabetes ate 60 g of almonds a day for 12 weeks in a 2011 trial. Overall, they saw improvements in:
- blood sugar levels
- blood lipid, or fat, levels
In order to boost blood sugar profiles, some experts recommend using magnesium supplements, but almonds can instead provide an acceptable dietary source.
6) Almonds help manage weight
Almonds are low in carbohydrates, yet high in fiber, protein and healthy fats.
Eating almonds as a mid-morning snack will leave a person feeling full for some time, according to research released in 2015. Individuals consumed 28 g (173 calories) or 42 g. (259 calories). The degree to which the appetites of the participants remained low depended on the amount of almonds that they consumed.
Feeling full will help individuals lose weight, since they are less likely to search for more snacks.
Nuts also feature in cereal for breakfast.
7) Almonds boost bone health
As a way to acquire some of these nutrients, experts have suggested almonds.
The quantity of each nutrient in one ounce (28.4 g) of almonds is shown in the following table. This is roughly equal to a handful of almonds or about 23 kernels of almonds.
In line with the 2015-2020 Dietary Recommendations for Americans, it also indicates how much an adult requires for each nutrient. Recommendations differ according to the sex and age of the individual.
|Nutrient||Amount in 1 ounce||Daily adult requirement|
|Carbohydrate (g)||6.1, including 1.2 g of sugar||130|
|Fat (g)||14.2, of which 12.4 g is unsaturated||20%–35% of daily calories|
|Selenium (micrograms or mcg)||1.2||55|
|Folate (mcg, DFE)||12.5||300–400|
|Vitamin E (mg)||7.27||15|
In a plant-based diet, the B vitamins, choline, and protein could all be lacking. By consuming almonds, people who adopt a vegan diet can supplement their needs.
There are potential risks related to the consumption of almonds by health experts.
People allergy to nuts should avoid almonds. They should seek urgent medical attention if a person develops hives, swelling, and trouble breathing after eating almonds. A disease known as anaphylaxis can rapidly develop and can be life-threatening.
Those with a suspected allergy can review premade food packages to ensure that restaurant dishes do not contain nuts. There is a possibility that nuts will be found in cakes, candies, savory rice, and many other foods and dishes.
Choking and aspiration
Because of the possibility of choking, young children, certain older adults, and anybody who has trouble swallowing should avoid whole nuts.
There may be a greater risk of aspiration in people with dementia, Parkinson’s disease, and reduced mobility, which may cause food to enter the lungs. Aspiration of food can cause complications, such as pneumonia.
Almonds are a heathy food. They provide a number of important nutrients and can be a good source of protein for individuals who adopt a diet focused on plants.
They are also vesatile and can be incorporated into the diet in several ways by individuals.
People with an allergy to nuts should not eat almonds or items containing almonds.
- Almonds reduce the risk of heart disease, research shows. (2014).
- Appendix 7. Nutritional goals for age-sex groups based on dietary reference intakes and Dietary Guidelines recommendations. (2015).
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- The health benefits of almonds (LINK)
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