In 1966, country-music icon Johnny Cash released his 23rd album, “Everybody Loves a Nut.” Though he might not have been singing about almonds or walnuts, Cash was absolutely right about one thing: Nuts are worthy of big love for the amazing health benefits they bestow.
Their most recently discovered gift is weight control.
It seems that eating 1 ounce of whole nuts or 2 tablespoons of nut butter daily in place of red or processed meat, french fries, or desserts may prevent long-term gradual weight gain and obesity.
In a study presented at the American Heart Association meeting, Brazil nuts were the star; they increase a sense of fullness and stabilize glucose and insulin responses.
But all tree nuts — almonds and walnuts included — as well as peanuts (a legume) provide substantial benefits.
The key is not to add nuts' calories (almonds have 146 per ounce, Brazil nuts 196) to your daily intake. Replace other foods with them.
You'll tamp down your appetite and boost your nutritional powers.
Another study found that a higher intake of nuts is associated with lower risk of cardiovascular disease, cancer, and death from respiratory disease, diabetes, and infections.
Yet another showed that the mono- and polyunsaturated fatty acids, proteins, fibers, vitamins, minerals, and bioactive compounds in nuts help prevent or treat elevated glucose and LDL cholesterol levels, as well as body-wide inflammation.
Clearly, you'd be nuts not to take advantage of this tasty way to improve your health.