Are you nuts about nuts? If so, there are good reasons to love eating nuts. Nuts are known for their nutritional benefits and many nuts are full of Omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential to a healthy diet. Omega-3’s are a polyunsaturated fat, which means a “good” fat, and is thought to lower cholesterol and potentially reduce health risks associated with heart disease. Let’s not forget about all of the monounsaturated fats found in nuts. These type fats can also help reduce bad cholesterol levels in your blood and lower the risk for heart disease, and stroke. Monounsaturated fats are high in Vitamin E, an antioxidant vitamin (another heart healthy vitamin.) Nuts also contain fiber, which helps create a feeling of fullness and helps us to eat less. Just one handful of nuts contains approximately 170 calories, 12 grams of healthy fats, 4 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of fiber, and 4-7 grams of protein. This well-rounded list of nutrients make nuts a perfect healthy snack. While a handful of nuts each day can bring super health benefits, be careful not to over eat these crunchy delights or you make quickly consume enough calories to make a meal portion or more.
Almonds (1 oz.) – 168 calories, 14 g fat (1.1 g saturated, 3.4 g polyunsaturated fat, 9 g monounsaturated fat), 6 g carbohydrate (3.5 g fiber), 6 g protein
Hazelnuts (1 oz.) – 178 calories, 17 g fat (1.3 g saturated, 2.2 g polyunsaturated fat, 13 g monounsaturated fat), 4.7 g carbohydrate (2.7 g fiber), 4.2 g protein
Peanuts (1 oz.) – 161 calories, 14 g fat (1.9 g saturated, 4.4 g polyunsaturated, 7 g monounsaturated), 4.6 g carbohydrate (2.4 g fiber), 7 g protein
Walnuts (1 oz.) – 185 calories, 18 g fat (1.7 g saturated, 13 g polyunsaturated, 2.5 g monounsaturated), 3.9 g carbohydrate (1.9 g fiber), 4.3 g protein