Almonds are the healthiest nuts that are grown today. It has been described in the Bible as a symbol of hope and value. Almonds are used in Ayurveda medicines for their capability to improve brain power. You can consume almonds in many ways. You can eat it raw as a healthy snack, eat almond butter or milk. You can also use almond flour to make desserts. Because of the beneficial properties of almond, they are also used in oils, body lotions or fragrances.
Raw unsalted almonds are the safest to eat. However, many people prefer the roasted taste. Both raw and roasted ones are packed with a high dose of minerals and nutrients. Only one ounce of almond contains 161 calories and it also contains Folate, Choline, Pantothenic acid, thiamine, selenium, and other important vitamins and minerals. Almonds provide some amazing health benefits that are described below:
1. Prevents Heart Disease
Almonds contain monounsaturated fatty acids, antioxidants and other nutrients that are good for the heart health. Eating a handful of almonds can protect you from heart diseases.
- Flavonoids present in the skin of almonds work with vitamin E to reduce inflammation and improve artery health.
- Magnesium, manganese, copper, potassium, calcium, etc. present in almonds help to prevent hypertension and improve heart health.
- Almonds can lower the level of bad cholesterol in the body and increases the amount of good cholesterol, thus promoting a healthy heart.
- Plaques often build up inside the artery walls and thus results in restricting blood flow and increasing the blood pressure. Almonds can protect against building up of this dangerous plaque inside the artery walls.
- It also fights against obesity which is one of the main causes of heart attack.
- Vitamin E in almonds prevents the oxidation of cholesterol that clogs the arteries.
- It significantly increases the number of antioxidants in the bloodstream and helps to improve blood flow and reduce blood pressure.
According to the FDA, if you consume only 1.5 ounces of almonds every day, then you can lower the risk of heart disease.
2. Improves Brain Function
Almonds are considered to be excellent brain foods. L-carnitine and Riboflavin present in almonds can positively affect the neurological activity of the brain, thus preventing cognitive decline.
- Almonds help to fight oxidative stress, improve memory, and give protection from age-related cognitive dysfunction and neurological diseases.
- It reduces inflammation and lowers the chance of brain disorders like Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, etc.
- Phenylalanine, a brain-boosting chemical present in the brain, helps in cognitive functions.
Almonds have been linked to a higher intellectual level. It is very important for growing kids as they help to boost their memory.
3. Improves Skin Health
Almonds contain vitamin E and other antioxidants that nourish the skin and removes signs of aging. It provides several other skin benefits as well.
- It contains very high concentrations of Catechin, Epicatechin, and various Flavonol antioxidants that help to fight skin cancer.
- Our skin is affected by oxidative stress from poor diet, harmful rays of the sun, and pollution. Eating almonds every day can help to prevent such skin damage.
- Almonds contain healthy fats and help to improve circulation that keeps the skin hydrated.
- It also helps to heal wounds faster.
Besides eating almonds, you can also apply the almond oil on your skin to get soft and supple skin. The oil extracted from almond is used as an aromatherapy massage oil and is good for treating dark circles and puffy eyes too.
4. Prevents Diabetes
Almonds slow down the rate at which sugar is released in the bloodstream. It helps to prevent diabetes in the following ways:
- It helps to manage blood sugar and prevent insulin resistance.
- It helps to lower unhealthy body weight, oxidative stress, and inflammation that can lead to diabetes.
- Almonds have a very small glycemic index (GI) that helps to reduce the after-meal rise in blood sugar. So, it helps to stabilize the blood sugar levels and thus provides protection from diabetes.
- Magnesium in almonds helps to control the blood sugar level.
Almonds contain low carbs and high quantity of protein, fiber and healthy fats which are ideal nutrients for diabetics. So, if you are suffering from type 2 diabetes, you should include almonds in your regular diet.
5. Helps in Losing Weight
Almonds are very healthy and help you to lose weight. Though it contains high calories, it is loaded with dietary fiber and healthy fats that make you feel full for a long time and helps in weight loss. It keeps the blood sugar level stable and you will feel full of energy without experiencing any food cravings. Almonds provide healthy metabolism and lower rates of obesity. If you eat almonds, you will be less likely to overconsume carbohydrates. Your body will contain less visceral fat and so the risk of certain diseases such as high blood pressure, heart problems, etc. will be reduced.
6. Improves Eye Health
Almonds have various chemicals and toxins that are good for the functioning of the eyes. Vitamin E in almonds helps to prevent abnormal changes in the lens that may lead to cataracts or age-related degeneration.
- Almonds stabilize the cells in the eyes and make them stronger so that you are less prone to suffer from such diseases.
- It also helps the body to fight free radicals that can cause irreparable damage to the eyes.
- It helps to form red blood cells that widen blood vessels and prevents clotting, thus reducing the risk of diabetic retinopathy.
If you have vitamin E deficiency, then it can cause vision impairment. So, you can fulfill the vitamin E requirements of your body by consuming almonds.
7. Improves Digestive Health
Almonds can improve our digestive health in many ways. Consuming almonds regularly can help to keep your digestive system in good condition.
- Almonds reduce the acid buildup in the gastrointestinal tract and balance our body’s pH that is important for proper digestion.
- The nutrients in almonds regulate the digestive enzymes that help in bile acid production, cholesterol synthesis, and nutrient extraction.
- It contains prebiotic components and fiber that help with proper digestion and prevents constipation.
- The fiber in almonds let the food move efficiently through the digestive system and cleanses the entire system.
If you suffer from indigestion, drinking almond milk will ease such condition. You can also eat the raw or roasted almond to maintain a healthy digestive system.
8. Reduces the Risk of Cancer
Consumption of almonds on a regular basis can reduce the risk of cancer. It contains gamma-tocopherol that acts as a powerful antioxidant. It fights oxidative stress and free radical damage that may lead to cancer.
- Almonds are rich in fiber and prevent colon cancer.
- Vitamin E, flavonoids and Phytochemicals in almonds can control the progression of breast cancer cells.
- Hydrogen cyanide present in bitter almond oil can help prevent certain types of cancer.
Cancer is a deadly disease that is affecting millions of people around the world today. Just by consuming almonds regularly, you will be able to reduce your risk of having cancer.
9. Strengthens Bones and Teeth
Almonds are good for your teeth and bones. If you eat almonds regularly, it will help you to strengthen your overall skeletal system.
- Almonds contain phosphorus, calcium, and magnesium that helps to maintain and buildup strong bones and teeth.
- It helps to prevent tooth decay and fight cavities.
- It contains vitamin E and omega-3 fatty acids that increase the bone mineral content, resulting in stronger and healthier bones.
- It can lower the risk of bone fractures and osteoporosis.
Therefore, including almonds in your regular diet can improve your bones and teeth and prevent a number of age-related diseases as well.
10. Strengthens Immune System
If you have a strong immune system, then you will suffer less from diseases. Alkali materials present in almonds help to boost the immune system. Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant present in almonds that get rid of free radicals in the body and reduces the risk or chronic diseases. So, you must consume almonds in various forms to strengthen your immune system and protect your body from the harmful effects of viruses and bacteria.
Almonds are small food, but they are packed with nutrients that are very good for health. It is a low-carb diet that you should consume every day in order to maintain proper body weight and prevent chronic diseases. You can eat almond as a snack, make a smoothie or add it to your favorite dessert. Almonds are widely available and you can easily include it in your everyday diet.