Mixed nuts in a white plate, on a dark background. Place for sig

Nuts about Nuts

Nuts are a new ‘craze’ for vegetarians and vegans alike and I for one, love nuts.

Besides being packed with protein, most nuts contain at least some of these heart-healthy substances:
  • Unsaturated fats. …
  • Omega-3 fatty acids. …
  • Fiber. …
  • Vitamin E. Vitamin E may help stop the development of plaques in your arteries, which can narrow them. …
  • Plant sterols. …
  • L-arginine.

My favourite, at present, are peanuts and probably the most well known in ‘butter’ format.  However I found out recently that peanuts are not really nuts, they are in fact part of the ‘legumes/lentil’ family which includes peas and beans because they grow in pods that mature underground.

Peanuts are an excellent source of plant-based protein and contain fibre that helps to sustain energy and nourish our gut microbiome.  They also provide biotin and vitamin E that help to support skin health, as well as a wealth of other minerals including magnesium, copper and zinc.

Peanuts are an excellence source of oleic acid which is a type of monounsaturated fat which has been linked with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease and attributed to an overall healthier heart.

However, with all these wonderful positives, peanuts are also one of the top food allergens and if you are in the company of someone who does suffer, then even a sniff can potentially set off a life-threatening reaction, so just be mindful of your surroundings.  Public transport might not be the best moment to open a new bag of nuts and if you are a parent, then you know all too well about the lunchbox ‘no-go’ rule!

Peanuts can be susceptible to moulds, particularly one called aflatoxin, although the process of roasting them seems to negate this.  Nevertheless, it is important to store your peanuts in a cool and dry place.

Roasting them also has other added benefits in that it aids with digestion as it removes substances such as ‘phytic acid’ that can be irritating to the gut, and I love them roasted as I think it makes them taste much nicer!

As always, when buying nut butters, always check the ingredients.  Some contain added oils, sugars and salts which are NOT needed.  So buy the ones that just have 100% whole nuts and nothing else!

In regards to how much you can enjoy, and I know we can all get carried away with nuts, however about 1 handful of nuts or 1 tablespoon of nut butter is about the right serving amount you should enjoy per day.

How to enjoy your nuts!

  • In smoothies
  • Raw energy balls
  • Raw ‘cheese’cakes
  • Nut butters
  • Snack
  • Trail mix
  • Asian/Indian cuisine
  • Milks

The list is endless………..how do you enjoy your nuts? 🙂

 

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