Walnuts: Nutrition, Health Benefits and Side effects

Walnuts are single-seeded stone fruits and contain an significant amount of healthful fats, fiber and protein.
They are commonly grown in some countries like Iran, California, China and Arizona.

This article will explain the nutrition profile, health benefits and side effects of walnuts.

Nutritional value of walnuts

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1 cup (30 grams) of walnuts offer the following nutrients:

  • Calories : 300
  • Protein : 5 grams
  • Carbs : 3.89 grams
  • Fat : 20 grams
  • Fiber : 2 grams
  • Calcium : 20 milligrams
  • Sodium : 0 mg
  • Sugar : 1 grams
  • Iron : 0.72 milligrams

Apart from this, walnuts are also rich in :

  • Magnesium
  • Vitamin B6
  • Manganese
  • Phosphorus
  • Copper

Health Benefits Of walnuts:

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Good for brain health :

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Walnuts have significant amounts of polyunsaturated fats and important phytochemicals that help improve the functioning of the brain.

The essential nutrients in walnuts, including vitamin E, polyunsaturated fat and polyphenols, can help reduce inflammation in the brain.

Besides, other critical nutrients like ellagic acid and folate in walnuts also contribute to memory function or neuroprotection.

Rich in antioxidants:

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In comparison to other common nuts, walnuts contain higher antioxidant activity.
This activity comes from polyphenols, melatonin and Vitamin E, which are particularly present in the papery skin of walnuts.

These antioxidants help fight oxidative damage in the body.

Aid in weight management:

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Walnuts have loads of fat, dietary fiber and protein that help you keep full for a longer period and increase satiety.
A study conducted by Harvard Medical School (HMS) found that individuals who drank walnut shakes had an increased level of fullness than those who consumed placebo shakes.

Besides, walnuts are a healthy snacking option for vegetarians as they contain fiber and protein. But also keep a check on portion size because excess of it could cause weight gain.

Eating soaked walnuts in the morning increases metabolism, which further aids in losing weight.

The healthy fats in walnuts make you feel full for a longer period, preventing you from binge eating.

Improve male fertility:

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Incorporating walnuts in your diet can help improve sperm quality, as well as they also take care of the vitality and motility of sperm.

Eating walnuts regularly can increase the swimming capability of your sperm and prevent sperm morphology and abnormal sperm growth.

Support your gut health:

anatomy-bacteria-bacterium-bowelsEating walnuts is beneficial for your health because it promotes good bacteria in your gut.

They also increase some good bacteria such as microbes and butyrates in your stomach, and these bacteria are great for your health.

Besides, walnut contain linolenic acids that possess anti-inflammatory properties and help treats diarrhoea, intestinal inflammation or other gastrointestinal tract disorders.

Good for your cardiovascular health :

human-heart-blood-flowWalnuts have been shown to ease the inflammation that causes heart disease. In addition, they also help reduce the risk of the blood clot that can cause a heart attack.

Two studies found that having five servings of any type of nuts, including walnuts a week, can lower the chances of heart disease by 50%.

Studies have shown that having walnuts can help reduce bad or LDL cholesterol. Cholesterol can develop plaque in your arteries, but consuming walnuts regularly can keep your artery walls strong and healthy.

Make bone stronger:

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Walnuts contain magnesium and healthy fatty acids, which are crucial for making your bone healthy and stronger.

Reduce the risk of cancer:

ribbon-awareness-support-disorderSome observational studies suggest that consuming walnuts can reduce the risk of developing certain cancers such as colorectal, breast and prostate cancers.

Walnuts have polyphenol ellagitannins, and some forms of gut microbes can transform these to urolithins.
Urolithins have anti-inflammatory properties, and consuming walnuts daily can help your body against colorectal cancer.

In addition, urolithins also consist of hormone-like properties that block your body’s hormone receptors. This can help decrease your chances of hormone-related cancers, including prostate or breast cancers.

Good for diabetes:

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Eating walnuts can help reduce the risk of diabetes as the nut can help control your weight.

They offer an excellent serving of fiber, healthy fat and protein. Taking in moderate amounts will not add extra kilos, so people with diabetes can take them without worry.

Good for your hair and skin:

woman-face-hair-makeup-femaleFree radicals present in the environment will not only damage your body but also create dryness and wrinkles in your skin. Walnuts help protect your body and skin against these free radicals.

Excellent source of omega – 3 s:

god-creator-lord-supreme-alphaIn comparison to any other nut, walnuts are higher in omega – 3. In addition to this, they offer 2.5 g per 1 ounce.
Walnuts contain alpha-linolenic acid, a form of omega – 3 fat that is essential and must require for your body.
Institute of Medicine confirm that an adequate amount of ALA for both men and women is 1.6 and 1.1. g per day.
Studies have shown that taking ALA per day can decrease your risk for heart disease by 10%

Side effects of walnuts:

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  1. If you have an allergy to nuts, walnuts are not a perfect choice for you. If an individual develops a rash or difficulty breathing after consuming walnuts, medical attention is needed.
  2. The walnut can cause bloating and softening of stools. Besides, they are high in calories and taking them in excess can lead to weight gain.

Conclusion:

Walnuts are nutritious nuts and have higher antioxidant activity or omega – 3 fats than any other nut.
The rich nutrient profile of walnuts is responsible for providing many health benefits, including improved brain health, cardiovascular health and male fertility.

You can easily include these nuts in your diet to get the maximum number of health benefits.

Author Bio

I am Prativa Sinha, blogger at fitnesshups. I am a northeastern girl born in Silchar (Assam) and living in Agartala. I just love doing yoga, meditation and exercises everyday. I provide health, fitness and nutrition related information in my blog. I believe we are able to achieve anything in life when we’re well nourished and consuming healthy meals has been linked to healthy body and better memory or alertness.

References:

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/foods/walnuts
https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/309834
https://www.healthifyme.com/blog/10-amazing-health-benefits-of-walnuts/

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