Nuts and seeds are super healthy and most of us aren’t eating enough of them! They are important additions to our daily food consumption. You can incorporate small amounts of a combination of the following 9 nuts and seeds in your diet to enjoy their health benefits
If you ever find yourself hungry and at a loss for a healthy snack… a handful of raw nuts or seeds is virtually always a good choice. They're easy to travel with (stash a small bag in your purse or desk drawer at work) and they keep well at home in your fridge (nuts and seeds go rancid easily, so storing them in the refrigerator or freezer helps).
Almonds are usually known as a kind of nuts however they are actually they are technically the seeds of the almond tree. They are off-white in color, covered by a thin brownish skin and encased in a hard shell. These oval-shaped nuts contain fiber, protein, calcium, zinc, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, copper, iron and some B vitamins.
They are also high in many antioxidants, such as vitamin E and selenium. In addition, they are an excellent source of healthy monounsaturated fats.
Regular consumption of almonds can help lower cholesterol, improve cardiovascular health, boost brain power, prevent birth defects, fight constipation, strengthen bones and reduce the risk of Type 2 diabetes. Almonds are also beneficial for your hair and skin.
2. Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin seed oil is rich in natural phytoestrogens and studies suggest it may lead to a significant increase in good "HDL" cholesterol along with decreases in blood pressure, hot flashes, headaches, joint pains and other menopausal symptoms in postmenopausal women.
Animal studies suggest that pumpkin seeds may help improve insulin regulation and help prevent diabetic complications by decreasing oxidative stress
Pumpkin seeds are a rich source of tryptophan, an amino acid (protein building block) that your body converts into serotonin, which in turn is converted into melatonin, the "sleep hormone." Eating pumpkin seeds a few hours before bed, along with a carbohydrate like a small piece of fruit, may be especially beneficial for providing your body the tryptophan needed for your melatonin and serotonin production to help promote a restful night's sleep
Best way to consume it is to eat them raw. If you need to roast it, you should be doing it yourself so that you can control the temperature.
Best way of Consumption
- Choose raw and unsalted seeds
- Avoid coated or roasted seeds
- Avoid sugar coated seeds
- The quantity of each nuts and seeds (to remain the mixture of nuts and seeds as a handful, instead of a whole full packet)
As nuts and seeds are common food allergens, eat them only if you are certain you are not allergic to them. Always opt for the recommended daily serving and avoid overeating. Store nuts and seeds in airtight containers. This will help prevent the oil in them from going rancid. Last but not least, it is important to handle them properly so as to prevent them from being exposed to harmful bacteria.