9 Health Benefits of Almonds – King of Nuts

| July 18, 2011 | 17 Comments

almond gluten free from Real Food for Life

Do you know how beneficial almonds are for your health?

Almonds are my favourite nut; most mornings I add 7 to 10 almonds to my breakfast.  Almonds are tasty and nutritious as most people will agree.

9 Health Benefits of Almonds:

  1. Reduce Heart Attack Risk:  A study showed those who consumed nuts five times a week had a 50% reduction in risk of heart attack according to the Loma Linda School of Public Health.
  2. Lowers ‘Bad’ Cholesterol:  One clinical study showed that almonds added to the diet had a favorable effect on blood cholesterol levels and that none of the study groups experienced weight gain in the study by Dr. Gene Spiller, Director of the Health Research and Studies Center, Inc.
  3. Protects artery walls from damage:  It was found that the flavonoids in almond skins work in synergy with the vitamin E thus reducing the risk of heart disease. (Research at Tufts University)
  4. Build strong bones and teeth with the phosphorus in almonds.
  5. Healthy fats helps in weight loss:
  • Although nuts contain lots of fat frequent nut eaters are thinner on average than those who almost never consume nuts. (data from the Nurses’ Health Study)
  • Those who ate nuts at least two times per week were 31% less likely to gain weight than were those who never or seldom at them in a study involving 8865 adults. (WHFood’s article on almonds)
  1. Almonds lower the rise in blood sugar and insulin after meals.
  2. Good brain function:  Almonds contain riboflavin and L-carnitine, nutrients that boost brain activity which may also reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.
  3. A nutrient for the nervous system according to Ayurveda; they help to increase high intellectual level and longevity.
  4. They alkalize the body.
    Almonds are the only nut and one of the few proteins that are alkaline forming.  When your body is not alkaline enough, you risk osteoporosis, poor immune function, low energy and weight gain.
    To read the benefits of an alkaline body and the dangers of being too acid click here:  Balance Your Body with Acid/Alkaline Balance

Did you know?

  • Almonds are actually stone fruits related to cherries, plums and peaches.
  • 2.51 million tonnes of almonds were produced in 2010 according to Food and Agriculture Organization.
  • United States is the largest producer of almonds. Unfortunately, it also demands that almonds are pasteurized or irradiated. Read more at:  The Killing of California Almonds
  • From ancient Egypt to modern times, almonds have always been a popular ingredient in lotions and potions.

almonds - alkaline nut and protein

Almond Nutrition:

This is one very nutrient-dense food which we call a Powerfood.

  • Packed with protein; almonds are 13 percent protein.
  • One ounce (or about 23 almonds) is an excellent source of vitamin E, magnesium, fibre and protein.
  • Filled with minerals such as magnesium, copper.
  • Filled with B vitamins.
  • Provide 266mg (27% DV) of calcium per 100g serving, 367mg (37% DV) per cup.
  • Full of potassium, phosphorus and iron.
  • Cholesterol-free.
  • One-ounce serving of almonds contains about the same amount of antioxidants as a serving of broccoli.
  • One of the best whole food sources of vitamin E, with about one third of the daily value per ounce.
  • Heart-healthy with monounsaturated fat; one-quarter cup of almonds contains about 18 grams of fat, 11 grams is heart-healthy monounsaturated fats.
  • 20-25 almonds contain as much calcium as 1/4 cup of milk.

Almond History:

Almonds are thought to have originated in western Asia and North Africa; they have been written about in many historical texts, including the Bible.

 The almond tree is one of the earliest domesticated tree nuts because wild almonds produces cyanide; even eating a few dozen at one time can be fatal.

 How to Store:

  • Keep them in an airtight container to protect them from air so the oil does not go rancid.
  • Almonds keep best in a dark, cool environment such as your refrigerator for up to two years according to the Almond Board of California.
  • If you want them to last up to four years, freeze them in airtight containers.

Almond Cautions:

Almonds grown in USA are not raw; read more: The Killing Of California Almonds

almond varieties are toxic, domesticated almonds are not.

It is estimated that one to two percent of the population is allergic to tree nuts (almonds, pecans, walnuts, cashews, Brazil nuts, hazelnuts, pine nuts, pistachios and macadamia nuts), peanuts or both.

Wait till children are at least one year old before feeding them any kind of nuts.

8 Tips for eating or cooking:

Let’s get these tasty almonds into our diet.

  1. How to get the nutrition from almonds: Almonds can be difficult to digest and may stress your pancreas. Like all nuts they contain phytate which makes them difficult to digest. To get maximum nutrition it is best to soak them before they are eaten or roast them. Almonds are one of only a few nuts that will actually sprout when soaked. When you soak them it neutralizes the phytate allowing the nutrients from the nut to be released. Watch a video explaining more about sprouting nuts and seeds here:  Sprouting Nuts and Seeds video
  2. Almond flour is great in gluten free cooking and baking.
  3. Almond Milk with its mild flavour and light colour is a very good alternative for those that need to be dairy free, soy free and for vegans.
  4. Green almonds are dipped in sea salt and eaten as snacks on Iran street markets.
  5. Eat almonds with the skin as it contains more than 20 antioxidant flavanoids.
  6. Almond oil is good for cooking at high temperatures; it has a high smoke point.
  7. Good food for your skin and hair: rub a little on to the skin to moisturize it.
  8. Eat your almonds in this delicious Nutritious Nut Loaf

 Learn How to Cook and Bake with Almonds

I love almonds so much I use them in all my Healthy Diets  and Detoxes.

These are 2 day trainings which you can do on your own time or with a group where for a concentrated time you focus on learning the knowledge and skills to use the healthiest foods.

 

Copyright ©Diana Herrington  You are welcome to share this article with anyone who you think may benefit from this information as long as you give credit to Real Food for Life by including the link to the home page www.RealFoodforLife.com or the direct link to this post.

About Diana Herrington

I am the Founder and Author at Real Food For Life. Have been teaching cooking classes worldwide since 1982. Create original, healthy recipes and menus, which are gluten free and white sugar free. Also, the author of the GREEN means LEAN and Balance Your Body e-books. I turned a debilitating health crisis into a passion for helping others with healthy, sugar free, gluten free eating and cooking.

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Category: Nutrition, PowerFoods

Comments (17)

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  1. Diane says:

    Thank you foe all the great information.
    I have read that soaking almonds for a few hours helps to make them easier to digest, what is your opinion on this ? Thanks in advance

  2. Hi Diana,
    Pierrette soaks them overnight.We blend them with water to make the greatest nut milk ever and use it to make our fruit smoothies every morning for the whole family.
    The fruits act as “eliminators” and help to improve the digestive flow.
    We do not need all the fibre and having juice is the best way to get all the nutritional values from fruits and vegetables without all the calories.
    Pierre
    Thee Quest

  3. Paul Jimerson says:

    Hi! Do you think almond milk is better than rice milk, which i’ve been using for years? Thanks.

  4. Diane, sorry I did not see your post. Yes for sure soak them; to learn more see the post: http://realfoodforlife.com/sprouting-nuts-seeds/

    Pierre, you two do much like I do; I love almond milk. Yes you are so on right about all the goodness.

    Hi Paul! Yes I do as it is more alkaline forming and we need all the help we can get with that…especially if we make it our self. Did you see the post http://realfoodforlife.com/almond-milk-dairy-free/

  5. Randy Fritz says:

    HI Diane
    Diana Herrington of Real Food For Life wrote an article on that at : http://realfoodforlife.com/sprouting-nuts-seeds/ Thanks for your participation!

  6. Kevin Reynolds says:

    Few almonds are actually raw: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2007/08/23/BUE8RN9HJ.DTL&type=printable

    However, these people: http://www.organicpastures.com/raw_almonds.html sell truly raw almonds.

    Take care

  7. Thank you Kevin for the links which US people will appreciate.
    I am happy that in Canada we can easily get raw almonds; we just do not get them from the US any more if we want raw almonds. I believe that the US is the only place in the world to not have an easy supply of raw almonds.

  8. Thanks for the great info on almonds! I’m glad to hear that almonds are alkaline forming. Previously I had heard that macadamias were the only alkaline forming nuts. If both are right, that’s great news, because that means my two favorite nuts are both alkaline forming.

  9. paul sparta says:

    and the good thing about almonds,(tried and tested many times) after about 3 weeks of having about 60 a day wth weight traing u see amazing results!

  10. Sunny Holmes says:

    I eat almonds in several forms and love them! You haven’t mentioned almond butter. What about the nutritional value of roasted or raw almond butter, since neither are soaked first? I do use soaked ground almonds in my smoothies every morning plus almond milk.

    Thanks for the great article!

  11. rose says:

    thank u so much , great information
    could u please let me know if almond meal does the same as above

  12. Rose, in my baking I use blanched almond flour which means the almonds that have had their skin removed. The skin is where many of the nutrients are. You could make your own almond meal with the skins on but probably will not work so well in baking. Also, because it is blanched you will get many of the other nutrients as the blanching will stop the enzyme inhibitor from blocking the absorbtion of nutrients.

  13. Sunny, I believe almond butter that is roasted would have much of the nutrition in them except that mostly they do add some extra oil to create a smoother consistency.
    Raw almond butter is one of those foods I do not buy as I do not think it is as digestible. You can make your own which I hear is a lot of work using raw almonds that you soakeds, then dehydrate and then blended for a long time.

  14. jerris says:

    Please tell me what the nutritional value is in almond milk. When I read the nutritional
    values on the carton it doesn’t appear to have much. What is all that liquid comprised of. It can’t be all almond liquid…

  15. The reason it does not have that much in nutrients is because to make the almond milk you have to use lots of water. See the Almond milk recipe we have here. Sorry I do not keep track of specific nutrients in foods. There are many sites that specialize in that and that is all they do.

  16. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. I really appreciate your efforts and I am waiting for your next write ups thank you once again.

  17. Raw Burn says:

    What’s up, just wanted to say, I loved this blog post. It was helpful.
    Keep on posting!

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