Nancy's Nutrition Corner

"Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food," Hippocrates.

Awesome Almonds

Many people worry that almonds, and nuts in general, are too fatty to eat on a regular basis. They couldn’t be more wrong! Current research reveals that almonds are not only the most nutritionally dense nut, they actually decrease one’s risk of weight gain.

Nutritional Content
Like olive oil and avocados, almonds are high in monounsaturated fat. This type of fat is considered "heart healthy" and is associated with a reduced risk of heart disease. Almonds are a very good source of vitamin E, one of the most potent antioxidants around. The magnesium in almonds lessens blood vessel resistance and improves the flow of blood, decreasing blood pressure and lessening ones risk of heart disease. At least twenty antioxidant flavonoids have been identified in almond skins. Some of these are the same well known catechins also found in green tea. Almonds are a good source of manganese and copper. These minerals are cofactors for a very important enzyme called superoxide dismutase or "SOD". SOD plays a crucial role in squelching free radicals in the body. Almonds are also a good source of vitamin B2 (also known as riboflavin) which plays an important role in energy production. Finally, almonds are a concentrated source of protein: one quarter cup of almonds contains close to 8 grams of protein.

Let's "Nut" Forget—Almonds Lower the Risk of Weight Gain!
Many people avoid nuts in general for fear of gaining weight, however, studies have shown this fear is unsubstantiated. A recent 28 month study in Spain involving thousands of adult men and women, found that people who ate nuts at least twice a week were much less likely to gain weight than those who almost never ate nuts.

Add Almonds to Your Meals and Snacks
Adding almonds to your diet couldn't be any easier—try some almond butter on you toast, celery, or pickle (that's they way I like it!), or toss a bag of raw almonds into your work bag for a mid-day snack.

 Featured Product
Raw Almonds

Nancy Silva, ND is a licensed naturopath with a penchant for good food. Her monthly column discusses the nutritional aspects of some of the foods available through LocalHarvest. You can contact Nancy from her listing on our website.

Back to the April 2008 Newsletter