Walnuts are the ideal snack for the day, and even science confirms that. According to a recent study, walnuts can help you prevent heart disease. What makes walnuts this powerful? It’s all about their nutritional value. Walnuts are a good source of polyphenols, vitamin E and omega-3 fatty acids.
A group of researchers at the University of Scranton focused on nine types of nuts, including almonds, peanuts, pecans and pistachios. Each nut was examined for the concentration of free and total polyphenols.
According to the results, walnuts had the highest level of polyphenols and more vitamin E than other nuts.
Scranton lead researcher Joe Vinson explains that walnuts are unique because of their alpha-tocopherol form of vitamin E content. The nuts also contain gamma-tocopherol, known for its ability to protect against heart issues.
Walnuts have also shown a power to improve endothelial function, adjust lipid profiles and normalize blood pressure.
Omega-3 fatty acids
Walnuts had more alpha-linoleic acid than other nuts. ALA is an omega-3 fatty acid contained in edible plants. It’s of utmost importance for many bodily functions.
Omega-3 fatty acids take part in the blood clotting process and build cell membranes of the brain. ALA lowers the risk of coronary heart disease.
The human body is unable to synthesize omega-3 fatty acids which is why you need to get these fats through your food.
Fats in walnuts are mostly polyunsaturated fats. Most nuts usually contain monounsaturated fats. Research has shown that 13 of 18 grams of the total fat in walnuts are actually polyunsaturated fats.
Walnuts are abundant in copper, magnesium, manganese and phosphorus. Add this to their omega-3 fats and vitamin E, you get a real anticancer bomb. These nuts can also prevent autoimmune diseases.
Eat your walnuts raw and soaked
You need seven walnuts a day to get enough of your daily requirements for vitamin E, ALA and minerals. Walnuts taste well when consumed both raw and roasted. But, be careful, high temperatures destroy antioxidants and nutrients in walnuts.
Tannins and enzyme inhibitors give nuts a bitter taste. These compounds protect walnuts from environmental hazards until the sprouting process.
If you don’t like the taste of raw almonds, soak them overnight to dissolve enzyme inhibitors. Rinse your nuts, and add them to your meals. Discard the water.