Almonds are an easily digestible food. They are a good source of protein, essential fatty acids, fiber, and minerals, such as potassium, magnesium, zinc, and copper.
Almonds are thought to have originated in China and Central Asia.
They are also among the best whole food sources of vitamin E in the form of D-alpha tocopherol. Almonds are actually the fruits of deciduous (meaning that the leaves fall off every year) trees originally found in Asia and North Africa.
Almonds are extremely rich in proteins so they are ideal for hair and skin. They are abundant in phosphorus, which is good for bones and teeth. They are higher in calcium than all other nuts. They are also higher in fiber than any other nut.
Almonds are roasted whole, and can be diced and/or seasoned. They are used in various forms (whole, chopped, sliced, or paste) predominantly in bakery products such as cookies, cakes, and pies as well as in confectionery products. They are one of the healthiest snacks and are the most widely-used nut for confectionery items like candy bars, cakes, toppings, etc.
Almonds are a great source of monounsaturated fat, which lowers “bad” LDL cholesterol and raises “good” HDL cholesterol. Almonds are even lower in saturated fat than olive oil, and one study in California found them more effective in reducing cholesterol.
If you think almonds are just for satisfying your mid-afternoon munchies, you’re in for a surprise. If you’re pregnant, or thinking about it, almonds are a great source of the folic acid you need. Many of the nutrients found in almonds are believed to have positive effects on several different types of cancer.
Because almonds are a plant food, they contain no cholesterol.
Bitter almonds are used mostly for cooking and cosmetics. On the contrary, sweet almonds are delicious and healthful.
From folic acid to fiber, almonds are your personal nutritional powerhouses. 90 percent of the fats in almonds are unsaturated, and the nuts are high in protein, fibre, calcium, magnesium, potassium, vitamin E, and other antioxidants. Today, almonds are cultivated in many of the countries that border the Mediterranean Sea including Spain, Italy, Portugal and Morocco, as well as in California.
Vitamin E is believed to play a role in preventing heart disease, certain kinds of cancer and cataract formation. Packed with vitamins, minerals and fiber, almonds are an easy, delicious way to get the nutrients you need every day, and they’re naturally cholesterol-free.
Flavonoids in the skins of almonds in addition to the vitamin E in the nut offer more than double the amount of antioxidants than either provide alone. Almonds contain generous amounts of vitamin E, considered a powerful antioxidant with cancer-fighting qualities. They are an excellent source of magnesium, and manganese; they are also a good source of fiber, copper, phosphorous and riboflavin.
Of the antioxidants your body cannot make, vitamin E is one of the most important because it breaks the destructive chain free radicals start, protecting your cells from harm. But getting enough vitamin E can be tricky in today’s fast-food world, which is one reason adding almonds to your diet are a smart idea.
A one ounce serving of almonds provides 7 grams of protein, is an excellent source of magnesium and the antioxidants vitamin E. A one-ounce handful of almonds offers heart-healthy monounsaturated fat, the antioxidant vitamin E, protein, fiber, magnesium, potassium, calcium, phosphorous and iron, all in 160 calories.
The high levels of monounsaturated fat found in most nuts may be partly responsible for the observed association between frequent nut consumption and reduced risk of coronary heart disease. From heart disease to cancer, almonds are fighting for your good health.
Since cholesterol is a major risk factor for heart disease, adding almonds to your diet is a great way to keep that risk under control. A diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol, and rich in the monounsaturated fat found in almonds can help reduce your risk for heart disease.
Speaking of health, 23 almonds a day will likely reduce your triglyceride levels, an established risk fact for developing heart disease, according to nutrition research funded by the Almond Board.
By : Pradeep Mahajan