Almonds were thought to have originated in regions in western Asia and North Africa. The Romans referred to almonds as the “Greek nut” in reference to the civilization suggested to have first cultivated them. Almonds are a great source of vitamin E, with 25g providing 70 percent of the recommended daily allowance. They also have good amounts of magnesium, potassium, zinc, iron, fiber and are a good source of healthy monounsaturated fat. They contain more calcium than any other nut which makes them great for vegetarians who do not eat any dairy products. They also contain amygdalin, also known as laetrile or vitamin B17, the controversial anti-cancer nutrient. As almonds are high in protein, around 18 percent, and contain virtually no carbohydrates, they are ideal for diabetics, pre-diabetics or anyone with blood sugar issues.
Walnuts are a delicious way to add extra nutrition, flavor and crunch to a meal. While walnuts are harvested in December, they are available year round a great source of those all-important omega-3 fatty acids. It is no surprise that the regal and delicious walnut comes from an ornamental tree that is highly prized for its beauty. The walnut kernel consists of two bumpy lobes that look like abstract butterflies. The lobes are off white in color and covered by a thin, light brown skin. They are partially attached to each other. The kernels are enclosed in round or oblong shells that are brown in color and very hard.
Pistachios are a great source of copper, manganese, and phosphorus, which help build strong, healthy bones. They also contain significant amounts of potassium and magnesium, which help regulate heart rate and blood pressure. An especially rich source of vitamin B6 and the other B vitamins, pistachios can help you fight infections, build muscles, and give you a boost of energy. Pistachios are amongst the highest fiber nuts. Fiber has been shown to help control blood sugar, lower cholesterol, and help with weight and reduce the risk of some types of cancer.
All over the world is known mostly by its nuts owing to its unique taste, free availability and multifarious uses in the kitchen, bakery and confectionery. These nuts grow attached to an apple of a tree, which is not an apple in the real sense but a pseudo apple. Botanically the nut is the fruit and the apple is its pendecule. Cashew nuts, like all nuts, are an excellent source of protein and fiber. They are rich in mono-unsaturated fat which may help protect the heart. Cashew nuts are also a good source of potassium, B vitamins and folate. They contain useful amounts of magnesium, phosphorous, selenium and copper which help prevent heart disease, promote strong bones, and give you energy. Eating cashews may also reduce your risk of getting Colon Cancer.
Raisins are made by dehydrating grapes in a process using the heat of the sun or a mechanical process of oven drying. Among the most popular types of raisins are Sultana, Malaga, Monukka, Zante Currant, Muscat and Thompson seedless. The size of small pebbles, raisins have wrinkled skins surrounding chewy flesh that tastes like a burst of sugary sweetness. While the colors of raisins vary, they are generally a deep brown color, oftentimes with hints of a purple hue. Raisins are very good source of boron which is useful and Studies have shown that boron provides protection against osteoporosis and reproduces many of the positive effects of estrogen therapy in postmenopausal women. Study published in the Archives of Ophthalmology indicates that eating 3 or more servings of fruit per day may lower your risk of age-related macular degeneration (ARMD), the primary cause of vision loss in older adults.
Pine nuts are small and elongated ivory-colored seeds, about half an inch long. The raw pignoli nuts have a soft texture and a sweet and buttery flavor. These delicious nuts may also be lightly toasted to enhance its flavor and add an extra crunch. From the health angle, pine nuts are calorie-rich. Just 100 gm of dry kernels yield 673 calories. The pignoli nuts have a high-calorie content as they are rich in fats. Pine nuts are an excellent source of vitamin E containing about 9.33 mg per 100 g. They are also gluten-free nuts and therefore a popular ingredient used for preparing gluten-free food. At 8.802 mg per 100 g, pine nuts are one of the richest sources of manganese. This essential nutrient helps the body develop resistance against infection and eliminate free radicals. An application of pine nut oil helps protect the skin from dryness. It is also used as a “carrier oil” in traditional medicines, aromatherapy, pharmaceuticals and cosmetic industry because of its rich nutritional value.