Can I Lose Weight Eating Nuts

Since George Washington Carver discovered the goodness and many uses of peanuts, nuts of all kinds have become a favorite snack and food of many cultures. But many who are watching their waste line have questioned “Can I lose weight eating nuts?” Let’s look at some nuts in general and see how and if they can be incorporated into a diet when one is seeking to lose some extra pounds.

Nut background

Most nuts grow on trees, but not all. Nuts are usually separated into tree nuts and non tree nuts. The tree nuts include almonds, Brazil nuts, cashews, hazelnuts, pecans, pistachios and walnuts.

There are some nuts that do not grow on trees. There is the peanut which is a legume and actually grows in the root system of the peanut plant. Though they are called tree nuts, the hazelnut actually grows on a bush. Sunflower seeds are sometimes referred to as nuts and they come from a flower which is not a tree.

The nuts that we shall be considering in this blog are almost all tree nuts. As mentioned above, the hazelnut grows on a bush, which could be considered a little tree, and the peanut is a legume.

Our list of nuts include peanuts, hazelnuts, Brazil nuts, macadamia nuts, pecans, cashews, walnuts, pistachios and almonds. The presentation of information about each nut is based on 1 oz portions.

Nut qualities or characteristics

Nuts are known for their fiber and their fatty acids. You might think that the fatty acids would disqualify them as a good health food, but it does not. The fatty acids in almost all nuts are the healthy fatty acids. These aid in building a healthy cardio system. So there are two important characteristics of nuts in their favor as health foods.

Almost all nuts are tasty and flavorful. Typically there is a nice balance of carbs and protein, too. Nuts also contain the mineral magnesium which is a trace mineral but a necessary component mineral in any living system. Of course all nuts have a good measure of calories, though not excessive, per serving. Therefore, servings should be measured to some degree.

In the listing below we shall list some characteristics and the amounts contained in each nut and then a note or two of other things notable of the nut.
Peanuts

Peanuts

This is the “nut” that is technically not a nut. But it has many of the same characteristics and qualities of a nut. 

One oz serving:

  • Calories per oz. 176
  • Fat: 17 grams
  • Protein: 4 grams
  • Carbs: 5 grams
  • Fiber: 3 grams
  • Vitamin E: 21% RDI
  • Magnesium: 11% RDI

One study showed that higher peanut intake was associated with lower death rates. That means that people lived longer.

Studies have shown that higher intake may lower risks of heart disease.

One study found that women who ate peanut butter more than five times a week had lower rates of type 2 diabetes.

Among mothers who ate peanuts once or twice a week when pregnant, their children had lower rates of asthma and allergies.

The only possible drawback is that many peanut products have high salt presence.

Overall, peanuts are a potent arsenal in a health building routine.

Hazelnuts

Like the peanut, the hazelnut is not technically a “tree nut”. It does grow on a bush which is very much like a tree.

1 oz serving

  • Calories: 176
  • Fat: 9 grams
  • Proteins: 6 grams
  • Carbs: 6 grams
  • Fiber: 3.5 grams
  • Vitamin E: 37% RDI
  • Magnesium: 20% RDI

As in the peanut, hazelnuts are beneficial in combating heart disease risk factors.

One study found that a good diet of hazelnuts reduced overall cholesterol as well as the “bad” LDL cholesterol, and triglycerides. It also improved blood vessel function.

Other studies have shown that hazelnut diets can increase the amount of vitamin E in the blood.

Brazil nuts

Brazil nuts are mostly found in the Amazon region of Brazil. They are a rich source of selenium.

One oz serving:

  • Calories: 182
  • Fat: 18 grams
  • Protein: 4 grams
  • Carbs: 3 grams
  • Fiber: 2 grams
  • Vitamin E: 8% RDI
  • Magnesium: 26% RDI

Selenium is an antioxidant which is a necessary element in several body functions. A one oz. serving of Brazil nuts will provide 100% of the selenium needed per day.

Brazil nuts reduce cholesterol levels. They also reduce inflammation in the body.

Macadamia nuts

Though macadamia nuts contain a wide range of nutrients they are most known to be a great source of monounsaturated fat.

One oz serving:

  • Calories: 200
  • Fat: 21 grams
  • Protein: 2 grams
  • Carbs: 4 grams
  • Fiber: 2.5 grams
  • Vitamin E: 1% RDI
  • Magnesium: 9% RDI

Macadamia nuts are well-known for their relationship with good heart health. This is probably because of their high content of monounsaturated fats.

In studies with people who had high cholesterol, macadamia nuts have helped to lower the overall cholesterol and especially the “bad” LDL cholesterol.

A macadamia rich diet was shown to produce the effects recommended by the heart-healthy diet of the American Heart Association.

Overall, macadamia nuts rich diets help to reduce risk of heart disease.

Pecans

Pecans are mostly known for their good taste. But there are other good things about them.

One oz serving.

  • Calories: 193
  • Fat: 20 grams
  • Protein: 3 grams
  • Carbs: 4 grams
  • Fiber: 2.5 grams
  • Vitamin E: 2% RDI
  • Magnesium: 8% RDI

The main tool of the pecan is that it contains polyphenols which act as antioxidants. In some studies these have been shown to help lower “bad” cholesterol levels.

Cashews

Cashews are part of the tree nut family. In my estimation, they are the best.

One oz serving:

  • Calories: 155
  • Fat: 12 grams
  • Protein: 5 grams
  • Carbs: 9 grams
  • Fiber: 1 gram
  • Vitamin E: 1% RDI
  • Magnesium: 20% RDI

One study has shown that a diet in which cashews provide 20% of calories improves blood pressure in people with metabolic syndrome.

Another study showed that cashews increase antioxidant potential.

Other studies have shown that diets high in cashews have increased blood sugar in people with metabolic syndrome.

Another study showed that a diet rich in cashews reduced blood pressure while increasing levels of “good” HDL cholesterol, without increasing sugar levels.

Walnuts

Walnuts are one of the most popular of nuts. They are a great source of the omega 3 fatty acid alphlinolenic acid(ALA)

One oz serving:

  • Calories: 182
  • Fat: 18 grams
  • Protein: 4 grams
  • Carbs: 4 grams
  • Fiber: 2 grams
  • Vitamin E: 1% RDI
  • Magnesium: 11% RDI

Walnuts decrease the possibility of developing heart disease, most likely due to the high content of ALA.

Several studies have shown that a regular diet of walnuts reduces the “bad” LDL cholesterol while increasing the “good” HDL cholesterol.

They also aid in improving blood pressure and blood flow through the cardio vascular system.

One study found the eating walnuts improved the measure of cognition called “inferential reasoning”. This implies that walnuts may be beneficial to brain health.

Pistachios

Pistachio nuts are noted for their being high in fiber.

One oz serving:

  • Calories: 156
  • Fat: 12.5 grams
  • Protein: 6 grams
  • Carbs: 8 grams
  • Fiber: 3 grams
  • Vitamin E: 3% RDI
  • Magnesium: 8% RDI
Some studies have found that pistachios may improve blood pressure.

Pistachios have also been found to improve other heart related risk factors such as weight and oxidative status.

They have also helped to reduce blood sugar after a meal.

Pistachios are most effective when more than one oz a day is consumed.

Almonds

Next to peanuts, almonds are the most liked and consumed of the nuts.

One oz serving:

  • Calories: 161
  • Fat: 14 grams
  • Protein: 6 grams
  • Carbs: 6 grams
  • Fiber: 3.5 grams
  • Vitamin E: 37% RDI
  • Magnesium: 19% RDI

Several studies have suggested that almonds aid the reducing of “bad” LDL cholesterol.

They have also been found to aid in loosing weight when incorporated with a weight loss program.

In diabetes studies almonds when eaten with a meal help to lower sugar levels in the blood after the meal.

For people with type 2 diabetes almonds help to reduce inflammation.

Almonds have also been shown to have a beneficial effect in supporting growth of gut bacteria.

Conclusion

Though there are many other nuts which people have incorporated in their diets, these that I have listed are only a few, but they seem to be the most popular. Though they are tasty and flavorful, they are also healthful and should, to some degree, be incorporated in everyone’s diet. By including nuts in our regular diet and then adding some type of exercise regimen to your lifestyle, you can live a more energetic and productive life in whatever field you are in.

I shall leave a link below where you may go and check out several avenues of which nuts you would like to incorporate in your diet.

Let me know what you think by leaving a comment in the box below.

CLICK HERE to see the variety to choose from!

 

 

 

 

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