Nuts are good and good for you. Recent studies have concluded that eating nuts protects against heart disease, high blood pressure and adult onset diabetes. But are some better for you than others? You betcha!
The Top 3 contenders happen to be my personal favorites…. I didn’t make the list though! : )
1st place: Almonds
160 calories 14 g fat per 1/4 cup
Almonds are high in vitamin E (which protects against stroke and cancer) and have more magnesium than most nuts. A quarter cup of whole almonds (about the same as a 1 oz. serving size) has nearly the amount of calcium as a quarter cup of milk.
Over 35% of your daily requirement of vitamin E, over 30% for manganese, and almost 20% for riboflavin and magnesium.
2nd Place: Walnuts
190 calories 18 g fat per 1/4 cup
Walnuts are unique among nuts because they’re loaded with the same heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids in salmon (but these taste better with chocolate). In more good fat news, walnuts also have an abundance of polyunsaturated fat, which may protect against type 2 diabetes.
Walnuts are the only nut with alpha-linolenic acid, an omega-3 fatty acid. They also have vitamin E and magnesium.
The World’s Healthiest Foods reports that walnuts have special anti-inflammatory benefits because they contain tannins tellimagrandin, the flavonol morin, and quinone juglone (which is found in almost no other food).
3rd Place: Peanuts
170 calories 14 g fat per 1/4 cup
Research finds that these legumes (they’re not actually nuts) are a good choice for keeping cholesterol levels at bay. These impostors also provide more protein (7 grams per serving) than true nuts do.
Almost 20% of your daily value of niacin and 10% of folate and vitamin E.
A word of Caution
Get raw when possible. Roasted nuts have most of the healthy fat benefits destroyed from the heat of the roasting process and typically have a bunch of hidden salt and chemicals.