What are the Best Nuts to Eat for Weight Loss?

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Nuts are your ultimate health food. Nuts are rich in healthy fats, high in protein, while low in simple carbohydrates. Also, nuts stimulate your body to shed those extra pounds and burn excess fat.

Best Time to Eat Nuts for Weight Loss:

When consuming nuts for weight loss, remember to keep calories in mind. Nuts are energy dense food, which means nuts they pack a lot of nutrients into a relatively small size. Although this means that you can get many nutritional benefit from nuts, this also means that consuming a huge serving of nuts could add excess calories into your diet (Mayo Clinic, 2015).

But still, nuts have been scientifically proven to help you get rid of those excess pounds. In a review of scientific literature on weight loss topic, researchers found that consuming nuts is linked with better diet compliance, greater weight loss, and improved satiety (Mattes, Kris-Etherton, & Foster, 2008). Choose one of the 5 nuts below for weight loss success.

5 Best Nuts for Weight Loss

1. Almonds

You can think almond as a natural weight-loss pill. A study of obese and overweight adults found that, combined with a calorie-restricted diet, eating a little more than a quarter-cup of almonds can help decrease weight more effectively, as compared to a snack comprised of safflower oil and complex carbohydrates, after just 2 weeks. After 24 weeks, the group who consumed nuts experienced a 62% greater reduction in BMI and weight.

For best results, consume your daily serving of nuts before you hit the gym. Almonds, which are rich in the amino acid L-arginine, can help you burn more carbs and fat during workouts, according to study printed in The Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition.

2. Brazil Nuts

Large Brazil nuts contain unique texture and flavor which makes them a favorite. These nuts contain beneficial oleic acid and palmitoleic acid, which promote healthy cholesterol levels (Nutrition and You, 2015).

Also, Brazil nuts are known to be one of the best sources of the trace mineral selenium. A serving of Brazil nuts contains more than 100% of your recommended daily intake of selenium. Selenium is an antioxidant that may help boost your immune functioning (National Institutes of Health, 2016).

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3. Cashew Nuts

Cashew nuts have a unique curved shape, they are light in color and contains that delicate taste. Just 1 serving of these nuts or about 16-18 nuts, contains approxmately 13 grams of fat and 5 grams of protein (MacMillan, 2015).

Also, cashew nuts are an excellent source of magnesium, with about 100-gram serving or about an ounce, thus providing 73% of your recommended daily value of magnesium (Nutrition and You, 2015).

Magnesium is important for regulating the metabolism of carbohydrates and fat (Volpe, 2014), which may help in weight loss. Also, consuming raw cashews or spreading cashew butter on whole-wheat toast, is a good way to boost your consumption of these healthy nuts.

4. Pistachios

Pistachios are high in protein, fiber, potassium and low in calories. Also, pistachios are loaded with monounsaturated fatty acids that help in controlling cholesterol.

Pistachios can also help in promoting weight loss, according to a study in Nutrition. 60 middle-aged adults who are at risk for heart disease and diabetes were divided into 2 groups. The group that added pistachios into their diet had lower total cholesterol levels, smaller waists, less harmful inflammation and better blood sugar numbers.

To consume fewer pistachios and consume fewer calories, choose ones in the shells because this will take you longer to eat.

5. Walnuts

Walnuts offer a great balance of healthy fats, including omega-3 fatty acids which provide essential nutrients, known to lower triglycerides and protect your heart.

Omega-3s are mostly found in fish, making walnuts ideal for those who do not eat seafood. Also, walnuts contain phytonutrients and antioxidants which are known to prevent type 2 diabetes and help lower inflammation levels.

Walnuts are also rich in melatonin, which promotes a healthy sleep cycle. To reap its benefits, sprinkle a handful of walnuts on your morning oats or entrée salad . As a snack, mix 1 cup walnuts, ¼ cup dark chocolate chunks and ½ cup dried blueberries. But do not eat this all in one day.

References:
1 National Institutes of Health. (2016, February 11). Office of Dietary Supplements – Dietary Supplement Fact Sheet: Selenium. Retrieved July 19, 2016, from https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Selenium-HealthProfessional/

2 Nutrition and You (2015). Brazil nuts. Retrieved from http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/brazil-nuts.html

3 Nutrition and You (2015). Cashew nuts. Retrieved from http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/cashew_nut.html

4 MacMillan, A. (2015). Best and worst nuts for your health. Health. Retrieved from http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20585485,00.html

5 Mattes, R.D., Kris-Etherton, P.M., & Foster, G.D. (2008). Impact of peanuts and tree nuts on body weight and healthy weight loss in adults. Journal of Nutrition, 138(9), 1741-1745. Retrieved from http://jn.nutrition.org/content/138/9/1741S.short

6 Mayo Clinic (2015). Weight loss: feel full on fewer calories. Retrieved from http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/weight-loss/in-depth/weight-loss/art-20044318

7 Volpe, S.L. (2014). Magnesium. Linus Pauling Institute. Retrieved from Volpe, S.L. (2014). Magnesium. Linus Pauling Institute. Retrieved from http://lpi.oregonstate.edu/mic/minerals/magnesium


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