Here’s why you should eat more almonds

When one plans to stay fit and healthy, deciding upon the meal plan becomes important so that one can follow through with the diet.

While one may be following a healthy meal routine, intermittent snacking too becomes important in the long run.

Highly nutritious and rich in healthy fats, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, almonds can be a healthy option for some intermittent snacking.

Speaking about snacking in-between meals and almonds, nutritionist Ritika Samaddar says, “A handful of almonds may have satiating properties that promote a feeling of fullness, which may keep hunger at bay in between meals. They are also an excellent source of vital nutrients like vitamin E, calcium, good fat, dietary fibres and plant protein.”

To maintain dietary resolutions, planning what to eat, before venturing out, is also important.

When venturing out of the house, one has to ensure that they do not compromise on meal plans. Whether at home, work or on the go, a handful (30 grams/23 almonds ) of almonds are a convenient snack that can be eaten anywhere, any time of the day and through the year. Nutritionist Madhuri Ruia says, “Always keep some almonds handy in a tiffin box so you’ll always have your perfect daily portion. Pair them with fruits or include them in other snacks. This way you will always have something healthy with you while on the go.”

Avoiding overindulgence in high-calorie food when at a get together is important to maintain the diet. “Coming together as a family is what adds to festive celebrations and gatherings. I make it a point to bring everyone in my family together to celebrate important festivities. It helps us all connect and relive and enjoy memories. And as we get together, we usually snack on our favourite masala almonds. It’s a tradition that has been carrying on for a long time, “ shares Dr. Madhu Chopra, actor Priyanka Chopra’s mother.

“If you are throwing a party, a good snack will be tossing almonds in your favourite herb. My favourite for this season is jaggery coated almonds. They make for a healthy option and are a huge favourite with the guests too,” chef Manish Mehrotra further adds.

Here are five reasons why one should snack on almonds:

– Almonds have a lot of nutrients. Experts say that a handful of almonds supply 161 calories and 2.5 grams of digestible carbohydrates. They are high in healthy monosaturated fats, fibre, protein and various important nutrients.

– Almonds have antioxidants. This can protect cells from oxidative damage, a major contributor to aging and disease. A clinical trial with 60 male smokers found that 84 grams of almonds per day reduce oxidative stress biomarkers by 23 – 34 per cent over a four-week period.

– Almonds are high in Vitamin E. Several studies have linked higher vitamin E intake with lower rates of heart disease, cancer and Alzheimer’s disease.

– Almonds can help control blood sugar. Their high magnesium content offer major improvements for metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes.

– Almonds may lower cholesterol levels. Some studies have shown almonds to effectively lower LDL lipoproteins in the blood. Eating almonds can lead to mild reductions in LDL cholesterol in the body, reducing the risk of heart disease.

Almonds are a simple and tasty nut that contain many nutrients that contribute to heart-health, such as mono-saturated (good) fat, vitamin E, dietary fibre, calcium and phyto-chemicals. They are also rich in antioxidants, manganese, riboflavin, and copper. Research has shown that regular consumption of these nutrient-rich nuts not only help you manage weight but also contribute towards heart health.

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First Published: Jan 23, 2019 10:20 IST

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