re you looking for a healthy snack with no sodium, cholesterol, or refined sugar? Snacking on nutrient-rich nuts is a great and easy way to combat unhealthy eating habits that often arise as the weather turns cold. Nuts, or dry fruits as we locally call them, are a staple winter food; and for good reason too. Besides being the perfect snack to munch on cold winter nights, nuts are chock full of nutrition, ranging from polyunsaturated fats to vitamins and essential nutrients. Due to these nutrients, nuts strengthen joints and bones, lower cholesterol levels, helpful in diabetes and high blood pressure. A handful of nuts a day provides important nutrients for immunity, heart health and can even lower the GI of carb rich meals. Here are six scrumptious and healthy nuts you must consume this winter. Read on...
Peanuts are one of the all-time favourite snacks of winter. Come winter season and the crunchy and delicious peanuts become one of your favourite companions. Peanuts are not only delicious, nutty, and crunchy; they are also loaded with proteins, healthy fats, rich in micro and macro-nutrients. Along with being relatively cheaper, peanuts contain phytosterols, mono-unsaturated fatty acids, manganese and tryptophan-an amino acid- which aid in balancing cholesterol and blood sugar levels in our body and reducing depression. Furthermore, the L-arginine present in peanuts stimulates the release of growth hormones, which can be beneficial in combating hair loss.
Almonds are known as the ‘king of dry fruits’ as they are full of essential fatty acids, fibre, and protein. Almonds are high in vitamin E and monounsaturated fatty acids. It helps in maintaining high cholesterol levels too and the magnesium and potassium help to balance heart function and blood pressure. Almonds contain no cholesterol and are high in antioxidants. They are known to relieve constipation. You can include almonds in your normal diet like add almonds to your oats porridge, toss some almonds into your salad, sprinkle some sliced almonds on your yoghurt, and prepare pancakes with almond flour. This way it will also help reduce the glycaemic index of your food which is highly recommended for a diabetic person.
And in terms of skincare, almonds also hold their place for giving skin a more shiny and radiant look, even on very dry winter days.
Have you ever wondered why walnuts are so good for the brain? Walnuts contain omega-3 which helps us with brain development. No wonder, walnuts are one of the healthiest and nutritious nuts. Consumption of walnuts has a positive impact on your brain cells. The presence of flavonoids and vitamin E destroys the harmful radicals that cause dementia. Walnuts are also loaded with healthy fats, fibre, vitamins, antioxidants and minerals that help provide proper nutrition to the body during the winters. Walnuts are extremely high in omega-3 fatty acids which help to provide moisture to the skin and hair. You can use walnuts in your desserts, yoghurt, oatmeal, salads and many other dishes too and believe us they taste marvellous.
Pistachios have warming qualities due to its antioxidant properties. It helps in boosting immunity, managing weight and solving digestion problem. Rich in vitamin E, pistachios shield the skin from UV rays. The antioxidants present in pistachios also prevent skin from ageing by neutralising free radicals. The significant presence of carotenoids luthein and zeaxanthin - that are important components for the treatment of eye diseases - is a trait unique to pistachios.
Pistachios are also good sources of proteins, vitamins, and minerals as they promote good health. So include them in your diet now.
Loaded with vitamin E and B6, cashew possesses anti-ageing properties which provide healthy glowing skin during the winters. Cashew nuts contain high amounts of polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats. These healthy fats are necessary to keep the body warm during the winter months. They are also rich in minerals and antioxidants. Also, experts suggest that cashews when eaten in moderation, can help you control cholesterol levels, blood sugar, high blood pressure and migraines. Cashew can also be used to provide a good flavour and rich texture to dishes. Include this amazing nut in your diet during the winter season to stay fit and healthy.
Pine nuts are loaded with vital nutrients and can offer an insane amount of health benefits. These are one of the healthiest nuts you can consume in the winter since they contain an abundant amount of fibre, vitamin A, zinc, iron and magnesium which helps you stay healthy. Pine nuts also help with weight loss and getting rid of belly fat. They are an excellent option for those of us looking to get back in shape. The zinc present in the pine nuts can aid wound healing and may help you build a strong immune system. These nuts can be used in your salads, healthy cookies and desserts, as an extra topping to boost your health.