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Walnuts Are The New Almond

Posted April 01, 2011 in Fitness & Nutrition

Almonds are usually the nut with a lot of press, but new research shows Walnuts to be the powerhouse of health benefits.   According to Joe Vinson, Ph.D. at the University of Scranton, “Walnuts rank above peanuts, almonds, pecans, pistachios and other nuts.”

“A handful of walnuts contains almost twice as much antioxidants as an equivalent amount of any other commonly consumed nut. But unfortunately, people don’t eat a lot of them. This study suggests that consumers should eat more walnuts as part of a healthy diet.”

Vinson also remarked that nuts in general, have an unusual combination of nutritional benefits.  Walnuts contain plenty of high-quality protein that can substitute for meat; vitamins and minerals; dietary fiber; and they are dairy- and gluten-free.

According to their research, it only takes 7 walnuts to start reaping the health benefits.

Given the wide variety antioxidant and anti-inflammatory nutrients found in walnuts, it’s not surprising to see research on this tree nut showing measurable anti-cancer benefits. The antioxidant properties of walnuts help lower risk of chronic oxidative stress, and the anti-inflammatory properties help lower risk of chronic inflammation, and it is precisely these two types of risk, that, when combined, pose the greatest threat for cancer development.

Recent studies have also shown that the addition of walnuts to diets  decreases “abdominal adiposity”-the technical term for the depositing of fat around the mid-section.
Good ways to eat them:

  • Mix crushed walnuts into plain yogurt and top with maple syrup.
  • Use walnut oil on salads or when sauteing vegetables.
  • Add walnuts to salads or healthy sautéed vegetables.
  • Purée walnuts, cooked lentils and your favorite herbs and spices in a food processor. Add enough olive or flax oil so that it achieves a dip-like consistency.
  • Make homemade walnut granola: Mix together approximately 1/2 cup of honey, 3 to 4 tablespoons of blackstrap molasses, a tablespoon of vanilla, a dash of salt, and a teaspoon each of your favorite spices, such as cinnamon, ginger and/or nutmeg. Place 6-8 cups of rolled oats in a large bowl and toss to coat with the honey-blackstrap mixture. Then spread on a cookie sheet and bake at 275°F (135°C) for 45 minutes. Cool and mix in 1/2 to 1 cup of walnuts.
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