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Get Nutty

Enjoying a protein packed snack! Photo courtesy of Creative Commons.

 
Squirrels know a thing or two about the health benefits from getting nutty!  In fact, squirrels cannot digest cellulose, an organic compound found in the cellular structure or nearly all plant matter, so they rely on a diet rich in protein, carbs and fats…enter their favorite food: NUTS.

You too can benefit from this protein packed snack…

Health Benefits
Incorporating a handful of nuts into your daily diet can have a tremendous, positive impact on your health!

  • Heart Health: Eating nuts can lower your LDL, low-density lipoprotein a.k.a. “bad” cholesterol (high LDL is the primary cause for heart disease) and reduce the risk of blood clots that can cause a fatal heart attack.  The Vitamin E found in nuts prevents plaque build-up in your arteries. 
  • Brain Power:  According to a study in the journal Neuron, the magnesium found in nuts may help to improve cognitive function, memory and protect against age-related memory loss.
  • Trim Waiste-line: Nutrition science has found that those who eat nuts at least twice a week are much less likely to gain weight than those who almost never eat nuts.  Nuts are full of fiber and protein, which makes your tummy feel full, so you eat less.  Nuts are also a great source of energy to fuel your body for a kick-butt workout.

J’s Top 3
Choose nuts in their natural state, with no added salt, sugar or oils (roasted nuts are ok).  Here are my top three favorites: 

1. Almonds contain the most fiber and are rich in Vitamin E! One serving of almonds contains six grams of protein, six grams of carbohydrates, manganese and copper — minerals needed to maintain the metabolic processes and support stamina. Almonds are also high in magnesium. which improves blood and oxygen flow throughout the body.  Almonds are my perfect mid-morning or pre-yoga snack.

2. Walnuts contain the most antioxidants of all nuts, which protect your body from cellular damage.  Walnuts are also a good source of vitamins B6 and folate, which helps improve the nervous system and they’re rich in omega-3 oils, the same heart-healthy fats found in fish oil, which prevents inflammation.  And ladies, the manganese in walnuts may reduce pesky PMS symptoms.  Enjoy crushed walnuts over a salad or in oatmeal.

3. Techinically legumes, peanuts are a very good source of monounsaturated fats and contain all nine essential amino acids.  They contain high concentrations of polyphenols, a family of chemicals commonly found in natural foods that contain strong antioxidant properties. Roasting peanuts can actually boost their antioxidant level by as much as 22 percent. 

Looking for a Nutty Superfood breakfast?
I love peanut butter and eat this for breakfast everyday; it provides great energy to start my day and my tummy is satisfied for a good 3hrs before snack time…Peanut Butter Toast with Nanners.

  • 1 slice of sprouted grain bread (Spring Hills Bakery “Big 16″: 100 calories per slice)
  • Peanut butter of Almond Butter if you prefer (MaraNatha’s Crunchy No-Stir Peanut Butter: 90 cal. per tbsp)
  • Sliced organic banana (90 cal.)
  • Whole Foods 365 Almond Milk (60 cal. per cup)

Get Nutty
Nuts are not low in calories, so skip the pita chips or pretzels, and enjoy a handful of healthy nuts instead.

Peace. Love. Namaste.

J

About Jamie Inn

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