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  • Date :
  • 2/5/2011

Walnuts, one of the best sources of omega-3 fatty acids

walnuts

An excellent source of protein, walnuts are high in fiber and rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. The benefits of eating walnuts, or using walnut oil, come from the fact that walnuts are one of the best sources of omega-3 fatty acids. Eating walnuts can lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels, lower the risk of heart disease, combat depression and help with weight loss. Other health benefits include healthy bones and lower blood sugar levels. Let’s delve deeper into the world of various health benefits of walnuts through this article.

Walnuts Health Benefits

• Walnuts are a rich source of omega-3 essential fatty acids. These nutrients improve cardiovascular health and also provide anti-inflammatory benefits in asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, eczema and psoriasis.

• Ellagic acid in walnuts is an antioxidant compound that boosts the immune system. Its anticancer properties also help in fighting the dreaded disease.

• Studies have shown that walnuts are effective in preventing gallstones in women.

• Melatonin which is a powerful antioxidant and also induces a good night’s sleep is present in walnuts in the bio-available form. Hence having a handful of walnuts before going off to bed helps in getting a sound sleep.

• Walnuts reduce total cholesterol in the body. They increase the amount of HDL cholesterol and lower the LDL cholesterol levels in blood.

• Besides omega-3 fatty acids that prevents erratic heart rhythms and regulate plaque formation in blood vessels, the essential amino acid l-arginine in walnuts improves the elasticity of blood vessels. This ensures proper supply of blood to various organs.

• Walnuts are an excellent source of a proteins, fiber, B vitamins and minerals like iron, magnesium, phosphorus, copper and manganese.

• These nuts are helpful in easing constipation due to their laxative effects.

• Walnuts are also called the 'brain food'. It is not only due to the wrinkled appearance of their shell that resembles the brain, but also due to the fact that they contain high levels of omega-3 fatty acids. Nearly 60% of our brain is structural fats which are primarily omega-3 fatty acids.

• Lp(a) is a lipid compound that increases blood clotting and increases the risk of artherosclerosis and heart diseases. Walnuts reduce the amounts of this lipid compound in the body.

• Walnuts are known to improve bone health.

• Research indicates that walnuts may reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease by arresting the formation of the amyloid plaques that are found in the brains of patients who suffer from this debilitating disease.

• Also referred to as the 'Imperial Nut' by the Romans, black walnuts health benefits include preventing heartburn, high blood pressure and various skin disorders. Black walnut benefits include their use in getting rid of intestinal parasites and tapeworms and help in ensuring proper functioning of the thyroid gland.

• Walnuts and walnut oil contain more omega-3 than any other nut around. Apart from lowering triglyceride levels, omega-3 is particularly important for the brain to function properly. Studies have shown that eating more omega-3, either from walnuts, walnut oil or fish, can significantly lower depression. Many people who suffer from depression have low levels of omega-3 in their bodies. Several other studies have also linked omega-3 deficiency in children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

blackwalnut tree

• The health benefits of walnuts also include weight management. Studies at Loma Linda University have shown that eating a few walnuts before a meal can decrease appetite and may cause people to eat less. Walnuts are nutritionally dense so they also provide a good dose of daily nutrients.

Walnuts are rich in protein, B vitamins, vitamin E and magnesium, calcium, potassium and manganese which is essential for growth and peak brain functioning.


Sources:

suite101.com

buzzle.com


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