Eating almonds, peanuts, walnuts and pine nuts regularly reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease. But pay attention to the doses
Good, healthy and loved by the whole family, nuts are certainly one of the most popular snacks in the autumn period. Often, however, many people are afraid to eat it for fear of gaining weight. The evaluation of the inclusion of these products of undoubted quality in a balanced diet has in fact always seen the high caloric intake as the main problem. But before we find out what the ideal dose is to avoid jeopardizing the figure, let's get to know it better.
The nut category includes walnuts, hazelnuts, almonds, macadamia nuts, pistachios, pine nuts, pecans, cashews and Brazil nuts. They are foods with a high energy content, rich in unsaturated fatty acids, in particular omega 3, fiber, folic acid, minerals and bioactive molecules (tocopherols, phytosterols and phenolic compounds). It is therefore not true that nuts and dried fruit (such as dried figs, prunes, etc.) are equivalent. Nuts represent the seed of the fruit and therefore have a high content of energy, unsaturated fatty acids, fiber, folic acid, minerals, while dried fruit is essentially the fruit from which water has been removed to increase its conservation. It is sugary, non-fatty or protein, and has a high concentration of fiber and vitamins. Still different is the candied fruit, a particular variety of products characterized by preservation with the addition of sugar.
Good for the heart
Thanks to their nutrients, almonds, walnuts & Co. are particularly valuable for cardiovascular health. In particular, a study by the Karolinska Institutet and the University of Uppsala in Sweden, published online in Heart, found that dried fruit can affect cardiovascular health by improving blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels and reducing the risk of weight gain. through antioxidant and anti inflammatory effects. This may play an important role in reducing the risk of atrial fibrillation and possibly heart failure.
The slimming virtues
And speaking of diet, it is important to dispel the myth that nuts make you fat. On the contrary, some studies have shown that the inclusion of almonds, walnuts, pistachios, peanuts, within a low-calorie diet can promote weight loss by controlling hunger as these foods promote a greater sense of satiety and energy nutrients are less absorbable.
But as long as you don't consume it in excessive quantities …
The ideal dose
The recommended portion of these foods is about 30 g, corresponding to 7-8 shelled walnuts or 10-15 shelled almonds or hazelnuts. "Small" precisely by virtue of their high calorific value. bearing in mind that, given the high palatability of the product, limiting consumption may not be easy!
When to eat it
According to nutritionists, the ideal time to munch on it during the day is for snacks. In fact, if eaten between meals, it helps to keep appetite under control with a consequent lower calorie intake at lunch and dinner. This is why this snack is recommended in times when you feel hungrier, but also when you feel a decrease in strength and fatigue: nuts are also an excellent snack to recharge your batteries, as rich in micronutrients as magnesium, which helps reduce tiredness and the sense of fatigue.
But be careful to prefer "natural" products, since very often the nuts in shell are salted or glazed and this helps to increase the salt or sugar intake, which is already quite high.