Walnuts have been eaten and revered for thousands of years. They have long been a symbol of intellect and intelligence. This is because they actually look a little bit like a brain. However, besides the fact that they look like a brain, they are also full of the omega 3 fatty acid, which is known to increase brain power and memory. Read on and find all the important health benefits provided by a constant nutrition with walnuts.
What Are Walnuts
Walnuts are the edible part of the walnut tree. They are deciduous trees that originally grew only in the south of Europe and the center of Asia. There are at least 30 different types of walnuts. Generally, however, only three types are consumed. These are:
• The English/Persian walnut
• The Black Walnut
• The White/Butternut Walnut
A walnut tree will not usually start to crop until it is at least four years old. The fruits can be harvested in August, when the crack begins to open, revealing the walnut shell inside. They are around the size of a small lemon and the inside of the walnut, the kernel, is the part that we eat and generally call the walnut. A kernel is made up of two lobes that are an off white color. They have a very thing brown skin, which keeps the two parts stuck together. Walnuts are not only harvested for their kernels, but also for their oil, which is used in cooking, medicine and aromatherapy.
Walnuts benefits are vast and important. They include:
• Walnut nutrition includes that they provide the body with energy and are full of minerals, nutrients, vitamins and antioxidants.
• 72% of the walnut is healthy fatty acids, including omega 3 and oleic acids. These monosaturated fats lower the LDL (bad) cholesterol and increases the HDL (good) cholesterol. It is believed that one of the reasons why Mediterranean people have fewer incidences of heart and cardiovascular diseases is because they consume greater quantities of walnuts.
• 90% of the recommended daily amount of omega 3 is achieved by eating just 25 grams of walnuts every day. They have anti-inflammatory properties, which lowers blood pressure and reduces the chances of heart disease and a number of different cancers (prostate, breast and colon).
• The phyto-chemical particles in walnuts fight cancer, combat the aging process, protect against neurological illnesses and reduce inflammation.
• Walnut health benefits also include that they protect the body from free radicals, which are known to cause cancer.
• The nuts are also full of vitamin E, which protects the skin and mucus membranes in the body.
• There are many types of complex B vitamins inside walnuts too, which are hard to get in other natural ways.
• Walnuts are full of important minerals, like copper, potassium, manganese, iron, calcium, zinc, selenium and magnesium. These are all important in helping our body’s enzymes, which help our bodies grow, produce healthy sperm and help us digest foods.
• Walnut oil is incredibly beneficial and can be applied directly to the skin to protect it from dryness.
It is so easy to access all these benefits. They say an apple a day keeps the doctor at bay, but walnuts are actually far more effective. Just 25 grams of cooked or raw walnuts a day is sufficient, which is no more than a small handful. This small amount will allow you to access all the walnut nutritional properties. Furthermore, because there are not many calories in walnuts, people often eat them when on a low calorie diet, to help them feel fuller and reduce cravings.