Nutritionists often recommend eating a handful of cashews daily for anyone looking to improve their diet. This is because these nuts have an array of nutrients that perform multiple functions in your body. From shrinking cancer cells to relieving constipation, cashews are impressive foods that yield many health benefits.
Types of Nutrients in Cashews
Cashews are well-known for being sources of healthy, unsaturated fats. However, they also provide high levels of minerals like copper, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, selenium and zinc. A significant portion of cashews consist of protein. Other nutrients include antioxidants and phytochemicals.
Cashews and the Heart
The kind of fat you eat affects your heart in a big way. Saturated and trans fats are unhealthy because they are difficult for the body to process. If left unprocessed, this fat often makes its way to the heart, creating plaque and clogging arteries. Unsaturated fats, the kind found in cashews, are heart-friendly and can even help lower the risk of heart diseases, blockages and heart attacks.
Cashews and Weight Loss
Eating fat to lose weight might seem contradictory to dieters. However, a balanced diet should always have portions of carbohydrates, protein and fats. Cashews have both protein and good fats, which help suppress hunger and provide the fat you need in your daily diet. Cashews are very healthy snacks because they are nutrient-dense foods, but should be eaten in moderation because they have more calories.
Cashews and Bone Health
In addition to improving heart health and speeding up weight loss, cashews are also good for the bones. Magnesium is a potent bone builder, restorer and strengthener. When it is paired with high copper levels, it makes your bones stronger and more agile. This is why cashews are especially beneficial for those who suffer from bone-related conditions. They are also healthy for menopausal women and those taking medications that reduce bone density.
Cashews and Disease Prevention
Cashews are highly favored foods because of their effect on cancer. Studies show that the flavanols in cashews have the ability to stop cancerous cells from growing and spreading. The antioxidants found in the nuts also control the population of free radicals, therefore improving your immunity and reducing the risk of many other diseases.
Cashews and Skin Care
Cashews are rich in copper, which is a nutrient important to skin and hair care. Copper helps produce and maintain the pigment in your skin and hair. Regular servings of cashews activate the enzymes needed to give you healthy hair, nails and skin.
Cooking with Cashews
When shopping for cashews, it is advisable to choose the unsalted kind to keep sodium to a minimum. You can purchase them from almost any food store and use them in a variety of recipes. You can add them to smoothies, protein shakes, yoghurt, oatmeal, soups or eat them raw. Some use them to make delicious dips and sauces.
Cashews are one of the most widely recommended nut types because of their high mineral and protein content. They supply the body with the fat it needs and can prevent many illnesses at the same time. Delicious and filling, cashews are the perfect snack for any healthy diet.