You've heard many times before that nuts are the perfect on-the-go snack or a great protein replacement when following a plant-based or vegetarian diet.
But that's about it.
Is it really true? Maybe just an advertising gimmick?
Didn't "they" say nuts, especially cashews, are unhealthy and fattening?
What benefits do cashews really have? Why should I add it to my diet?
These are all valid questions. And ones we would like to answer for you!
Below, we'll discuss cashew nuts' nutrition info and the top health benefits of cashew nuts.
CASHEW NUTS NUTRITION INFO
Cashew nuts are native to South America, specifically Brazil, and come from the cashew tree. It was distributed around the world since the 1500s by Portuguese explorers.
It is often sold raw or roasted, salted or unsalted.
The phrase "raw cashew" is misleading, as all cashews fit for consumption have been roasted once to remove both the cashew shell and the shell's harmful oils.
Roasted cashews are roasted a second time to alter or enhance the cashews' flavor.
Raw cashews have slightly higher iron and selenium levels than roasted cashews. They also have a longer shelf life and are often easier to use in cooking due to the mild flavor.
Roasted cashews, however, have a higher concentration of antioxidants.
Whichever way you choose to eat or use your cashews, they are very similar in nutritional value and provide the same health benefits.
Just be careful, roasted or salted cashews can contain high levels of added oils or salt. So if you are minimizing your salt and fat intake, opt for unsalted dry-roasted or "raw" (unroasted) varieties instead.
Nutritional value of raw cashews per 1 ounce (28 g):
- Energy: 157 Kcal
- Protein: 5.16 g
- Fat: 12.4 g
- Carbs: 8.56 g
- Fiber: 0.93 g
- Sugar: 1.68 g
- Calcium: 10.5 mg
- Iron: 1.89 mg
- Magnesium: 82.8 mg
- Zinc: 1.64 mg
- Copper: 0.624 mg
- Selenium: 5.64 µg
CASHEW NUTS HEALTH BENEFITS
Cashews are high in protein, healthy fats, nutrients, minerals, and antioxidants. They are indeed a perfect on-the-go snack, protein replacement and should be added to your diet for many health benefits.
Good Source of protein
With 5.16 g of protein in a 1-ounce serving, cashew nuts are a good protein source when following a plant-based or vegetarian diet. Add it to salads, stirfry, stews, soups, or as a topping on yogurt to increase your protein intake.
It can improve heart health
There are 12 grams of fat in a 1 ounce of serving. Most of this fat is monounsaturated (6.8g) or polyunsaturated fat (2.2g).
Mono & polyunsaturated fats can decrease bad LDL cholesterol levels. And in turn, reduce your risk for cardiovascular disease, stroke, or a heart attack.
A study published in the British Journal of Nutrition showed that the risk of coronary heart disease may be 37 percent lower in people who consume nuts more than four times per week compared with people who never or seldom consume nuts.
We all need a little bit of fat, right ;-)
May lower blood sugar levels and help with diabetes management
Research has shown that cashew consumption by people with diabetes is associated with better insulin levels. A 2018 study showed that people with diabetes who ate cashew nuts every day had lower blood sugar than those who didn't.
Aid in weight-loss
Diets that include nuts could lead to greater weight loss.
Since nuts are high in protein and fiber and have a high energy and nutrient density, they keep you fuller and satiated for longer periods. Cashews can also increase thermogenesis, producing body heat and boosting your metabolism.
Reduce the risk of gallstones
Nuts are rich in several compounds that may protect against gallstone disease. Consuming nuts can reduce the chances of undergoing a cholecystectomy, especially in women.
Good Source of Magnesium
Cashews are a good source of Magnesium which helps with numerous bodily functions. These include the metabolism of food, muscle recovery, and functioning, and preventing diseases such as insulin resistance, metabolic syndrome, and osteoporosis.
The Magnesium in cashews is also essential for bone formation as it helps with the assimilation of calcium into the bone. Manganese, another mineral in cashews, has been shown to prevent osteoporosis in combination with calcium and copper.
Great Source of Copper
1 Ounce of cashews provides 622 micrograms of copper. The recommended intake for adults is 900 micrograms. Copper helps maintain collagen and elastin, replace damaged connective tissue, and aids with healthy brain development, amongst others.
Contains powerful antioxidants
Nuts, cashews included, contain plant compounds that neutralize free radicals. Cashews are a rich source of polyphenols and carotenoid antioxidants. Antioxidants reduce inflammation and improve overall immunity.
Contain other Minerals and Vitamins
Besides all these incredible benefits, cashews also contain iron, potassium, zinc, calcium, folate, and Vitamin C and B. All of which are essential for optimum bodily function and health.
When considering all these health benefits and the nutritional value of cashew nuts, it's safe to say that there's definitely room for cashews in your diet.
As with all things in life, moderation is always key. Cashews, and all other nuts, are high in fats, so only consume the recommended serving size.
Inspired by the holiday season and its lovely aromas and tastes, we decided to develop a delicious, savory, sweet nut mix. And so our Rosemary Maple Cashews were born.
Rosemary adds an earthy aromatic flavor, and the maple syrup balances it out with a touch of sweetness.
If you like making plant-based charcuterie boards, having healthy snacks for your kids, or want a snack for hikes, our new Rosemary Maple Cashews are what you need!
Get it HERE