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What are the Healthiest Types of Nuts?

Fitday Editor
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There are many types of nuts, and many of them possess health benefits that you would be remiss to pass up. By definition, a nut is the hard-shelled fruit that comes from some plants which have an indehiscent seed. A great source of nutrients for people, nuts are in fact a composite of both the fruit and the seed of the plant, where the seed is not released by an opening fruit. In a culinary sense, the word "nut" is used much more broadly as seen in the inclusion, for example, of Brazil nuts and pistachios in the category of nuts. Both of these are not, biologically, true nuts. Some nuts are healthier than others; the healthiest ones have a myriad of benefits.


It is not surprising that walnuts are considered one of the healthiest types of nuts on account of the many benefits they feature. They are rich in vital fatty acids like omega-3 and antioxidants like ellagic acid. Omega-3 has been long known to give protection to your heart, encourage the improvement of cognitive function and give anti-inflammatory advantages for psoriasis, asthma, eczema and rheumatoid arthritis. Antioxidants like ellagic acid are great for battling cancer while also giving support to your immune system. Your heart is the organ that will probably benefit the most when you increase the amount of walnuts in your diet. A 2004 study showed that walnuts contributed to the reduction of total cholesterol as well as LDL (bad) cholesterol, the increase of the elasticity of arteries and the reduction of vascular cell adhesion molecules that figure prominently in the hardening of arteries.


Another one of the healthy types of nuts, almonds boast a treasure trove of things that are good for you like copper, potassium, manganese, calcium, selenium and vitamin E. To put into context just how powerful even a small helping of almonds is, just one-fourth of a cup has about the same amount of calcium that the same measure of milk has. Your colon also gets a health boost from almonds because their high content of fiber is thought to protect against colon cancer. This conclusion was reached by way of a study on animals. Cholesterol is yet another problem that almonds help you with. They possess the monosaturated variety of fat, which is not only healthy but also assists in clearing your arteries.


Eating pecans is wonderful if your aim is to get a whole bunch of minerals and vitamins into your body. Pecans are a source of 19 kinds of minerals and vitamins including zinc, vitamin B, phosphorus, manganese, potassium, calcium, folic acid, vitamin A, vitamin E, magnesium and copper. Research has established that pecans help to clear your arteries as well as lower bad LDL cholesterol. This was found to happen only if your intake of pecans is daily.

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