Nuts are high in fibre and packed with protein and nutrients. Although they have always been part of a healthy diet, recent health and fitness trends appear responsible for propelling their popularity even further.
The recommended daily serving of one or two handfuls is reportedly capable of delivering a myriad health benefits and can reduce the risk of developing chronic health problems such as cancer, diabetes and heart disease. Researchers from Harvard University claim that eating nuts can even increase a person’s lifespan. However, these benefits are not exclusive to nuts in their raw form. Many popular derivatives, like nut milk and nut butter, maintain a similar nutrient profile to the nuts they contain. Championed by fitness gurus, sweet tasting almond milk is high in omega fatty acids and fibre; it contains riboflavin, iron and vitamin E, and has no saturated fat or cholesterol. Its unique blend of nutrients and antioxidant properties can improve the appearance of skin, aid muscle recovery and promote digestion. Equally desirable are high-quality, preservative-free nut butters such as cashew, peanut, walnut and almond. They are an excellent source of monounsaturated fatty acids, omega-3 and protein, and they contain minerals like calcium and magnesium. When eaten regularly, they can help maintain blood sugar levels, manage cholesterol, and strengthen bones and joints to help prevent osteoporosis.
But the versatility of nuts does not stop there. Nut oils such as almond, macadamia and shea promote radiant skin and luscious hair, and are fast becoming a beauty staple. Rich in vitamin E, they can be found in products from luxury brands like Karmameju, Mia H.yt., R.Vive and La Prairie. These oils can be used to treat and soothe a range of skin and hair problems from acne, scars and signs of premature ageing, to frizz, dandruff and split ends. While nuts have many great benefits, they can have unwanted effects. Nuts are calorie dense and contain tannins, phytates and selenium which can cause rapid weight gain, digestive distress or toxicity. Skin sensitivity to nut properties in beauty products is also possible. To enjoy the benefits and mediate the risks, eat nuts only in moderation and avoid entirely if allergic or sensitive to nut products.