It was a long time coming but we’re now 100% sure that nuts are good for us and a great part of a healthy diet. More and more research is backing up claims that they can support weight control, cardiac health and have general immune system strengthening properties.
Which nut to choose is a bigger question however as different ones have different benefits.
Below is a closer look at which nut is best for you, depending on your long or short term fitness aims.
If you’re looking to fuel yourself around the running track or keep going throughout your strenuous training regime as a sportsperson then you’re looking for a carb-heavy nut. Opt for cashews which offer high levels of carbs as well as protein and zinc. They also aid cell growth and repair.
If you’re still keen on keeping your health in check in your twilight years then nuts packed with omega-3 fatty acids are ideal. They help keep your neurological system functioning and walnuts are a good choice as they’re high in polyunsaturated fats. Both heart and brain boosting it’s very easy to add a handful of walnuts to cereals or create a scrumptious crust for a cut of meat.
Maintaining or Losing Weight
Almonds top the weight management nut list. They offer a healthy combo of protein, fat and fibre which should ensure you feel full up after eating. Add them to salads, cereals and yoghurts to give yourself a fighting chance of feeling full. If you’ve got the opposite problem and you’re looking to up your weight them pecans and macadamia nuts are the most calorific options whilst still being packed with the healthiest monounsaturated fats.
The big thing to remember with your nut consumption is the portion size. A handful (approximately 30g) of nuts is considered a portion. 2 or 3 portions a day is your upper limit to ensure you get all the good side effects of this top snack.
Very interesting to know which nuts are best for fitness fuel. i didn't know that about cashews. Also - try chocolate hazelnuts if you want a healthy'ish treat.
I try and make sure there are always nuts to hand so I don't reach for the vending machine. Saying that, my local gym has fruit in one of the vending machines so if they added nuts it'd be perfect.
dark chocolate is good stuff, in moderation of course. Does it get better, we ask?
Oooh I like the sound of that, Tanith - chocolate-coated Brazils without the guilt! I suffer the same downfall that other people have mentioned, of buying nuts that have been made irresistible through the addition of rubbish.
Nuts make up a huge proportion of my diet. Mostly plain, raw ones. When I fancy a treat, I coat some Brazils in dark chocolate (85% cocoa). It feels like a decadent treat but it's good for you!
I'm with Olga - sugared almonds, what a downfall! Nuts are great but they get badly in your mouth, definitely one for portion control.
A bowl of mixed unsalted nuts (cheap from Lidl) and a handful raisins are a regular afternoon snack for me. I do have to watch my weight, but they stop me from snacking on anything else for ages, plus I know theyre nutritious.
Snacking on salty or sugary nuts can be a nightmare - keeping them natural is essential which is hard to resist when they put the plain old cashews next to the honey-roasted peanuts in the supermarket!
A lot of people worry that nuts are so fattening, but it's really good fat with so many benefits to skin, hair, and overall health and wellbeing.