Nuts often get a bad rap for being high in calories but a handful of nuts is a fantastic crunchy and nutritious daily addition to your diet. Not only are they flavorful and filling but in fact, they make an excellent source of vegan protein and are high in fiber and other power nutrients such as phytonutrients, vitamins, minerals and Omega-3. It’s currently harvest season for walnuts, chestnuts, hazelnuts and pecan and they are at their peak in taste and nutritious value, so squirrel some away and enrich your meals and snacks!
Here’s what I found in my local market in Chelsea today:
Walnuts’ power: Omega-3 fats ⇒ lower LDL cholesterol, blood triglycerides and blood pressure
Hazelnuts’ power: Vitamin E ⇒ antioxidant properties associated with a stronger immunity and healthier skin and eyes
Chestnuts’ power: Fiber ⇒ lower cholesterol and reduce the risk of heart disease
Pecans’ power: Antioxidants ⇒ help protect our cells from damages such as cancer
The best way to enjoy nuts is to munch on them raw or to dry-roast them lightly in a pan for 3 to 5 minutes (no burning as it takes away from their nutrition value). Stay away from salted and flavored varieties!
Nuts are also a delightful add-on in so many recipes but here are some basic add-on tips:
- Scrumptiously enjoy them in your breakfast by sprinkling some in your bowl of milk & cereal or cup of granola & yogurt
- Make your salads more filling by adding a handful of nuts
- Complement your steamed rice with some roasted or stir-fried nuts
So many ways to go nuts!