According to scientists, the health benefits of walnuts exceed all other nuts, and should be included more as part of a healthy diet. A research from the University of Scranton revealed that walnuts contained both quantity and quality of antioxidants, which help stop the chain reactions that damage cells in the body when oxidation occurs. So if you’re going to go nuts – go WALNUTS. Below are just some of the major health benefits of walnuts.
Improve Sleep – Having trouble getting a good night’s sleep? Not to worry. An antioxidant hormone found in walnuts called melatonin can solve your problems. Melatonin is a hormone that is naturally produced in humans by the pineal gland which helps regulate sleep. Make walnuts an evening snack and get ready to relax and snooze away.
Weight Loss – Due to the high packed omega-3 fatty acids, protein and fiber found in walnuts, eating just a handful will make you feel less hungry. Rather than watching your favorite T.V. night show with a packet of crisps or a bowl of ice-cream, go for a dozen of walnuts to snack away; the health benefits are incomparable.
Heart Health Benefits – By improving blood vessel elasticity and plaque accumulation, walnuts can reduce the risk of heart disease. Walnuts are a prime source of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) which is popular for preventing and treating diseases of the heart and blood vessels by helping to maintain normal heart rhythm and heart pumping. ALA is also used to treat rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and multiple sclerosis (MA).
Diabetes Benefits – Apart from high levels of the minerals manganese and copper, almonds also contain an antioxidant compound called ellagic acid. This antioxidant helps block the metabolic processes which cause inflammation that can lead to insulin resistance and diabetes. A study in the U.S. involving 140,000 women that consumed a 28 gram pack of walnuts at least twice a week showed that they were 24% less likely to develop type 2 diabetes than those who very rarely or never ate them.
Boost Brain Power – Walnuts have a very high concentration of omega-3 fatty acids which are excellent for brain health. This is why walnuts are sometimes referred to as “brain food.” Pay close attention to the shape of a cleaned walnut, and you will see that it is shaped like a miniature brain; coincidence? I think not!
Just because walnuts have been labeled as a healthy food, which they are, it does not mean you can help yourself to unlimited amounts. Just like all other healthy “Superfoods,” they only remain healthy when included with moderation in your diet.
Constantinos K. Costa