Walnuts: Features, Facts, Nutritional Information, Health Benefits, Safety Concerns, How To Select And Store
"Optimum health is the prime concern in every human's life!" We all live and we try to live healthy. In the mission of finding or managing a healthy life what helps the most is the nature. There are a number of natural gifts in the world, which help people keep them fit, fine and healthy in a natural way. Among all those natural gifts created by the nature for the benefits of mankind, is an edible kernel from the tree belonging to the Juglandaceae family with the genus Juglan. This edible kernel known as the walnut, is one of the best nutritious food one can take regularly for better health due to its highly rich nutritious content and because of its amazing health benefits essential for a disease free healthy life. It is not just about the great benefits to human health or the nutritional benefits that walnuts are most consumed by the people; but also because of the fact that they are great with their taste that people grow walnuts in a major percentage, especially in U.S.
In this current article we will discuss on the most important nutritional facts of the walnuts, their major health benefits and also talk about some of the quick and easy tips to prepare and serve the walnuts in the best and simplest ways.
General Features Of The Walnut:
Here below are some of the most common features of walnut, which could help you know about the nut from its physical appearance.
- Each nut is roughly spherical in its shape and its size is about a middle sized lemon which weighs about 10-15 grams.
- It encloses a single bi-lobed edible kernel inside.
- The walnut kernel consists of two uneven lobes which are off white in color and are covered by a thin papery layer of light brown color.
Facts About Walnuts:
- Walnuts are the edible kernels obtained from the part of the tree nut family.
- Apart from being great at taste, walnuts are rich in various nutrients and thus help greatly to the better health of human beings. The most important component present in walnuts is the omega 3- fatty acid.
- Studies have found that around 38% of the walnuts are grown in United States and about 90% of those 38% walnuts are grown especially in California.
- About 7 shelled walnuts are recommended to intake everyday for optimum health benefits.
- Among all the health benefits walnuts provides, some of the most crucial benefits includes the benefits to heart health, anti-cancer benefits, benefits in fighting against type 2 diabetes, benefits to skin health etc. However it is also mainly beneficial to the people who prefer a calorie rich diet.
- A comparative study between the tree-nut eaters and the non eaters of the tree nuts suggests that people who eat tree nuts are found with gaining 5 grams of more fiber, 73 milligrams of more calcium, 260 milligrams of more potassium, 95 milligrams of more magnesium, 3.7 mg of more vitamin E and 157 mg of less sodium.
Walnut- Nutritional Information:
Walnuts are rich in calorie, vitamin E, and fatty acids like the Omega 3 fatty acids. All these components present in walnut makes the tree nut a rich source of nutrient food with excellent nutritional benefits. Now, while considering the nutritional benefits of walnuts, it is highly crucial to know about the nutritional facts of the nut. So here below is the list providing the nutritional information of walnuts as per the best possible facts available.
- It provides about 654 kilocalories of energy
- About 13.71 grams of carbohydrates are present
- Walnut has a principle nutrient value of 15.23 grams proteins
- Total fat present is about 65.21 grams.
- About 6.7 diet fiber is present
- It must be noted there are no cholesterol.
- About 441 mg of potassium and only 2 mg of sodium is present in walnut
- It is a good source of vitamins. Vitamin C lists about 1.3 mg, Vitamin A content includes 20 IU, vitamin E list 20.83 mg
- It is rich in minerals like calcium (98 mg), magnesium (158 mg), phosphorous (346 mg) etc.
- Iron content includes around 2.9 mg.
- Walnuts also contain some percentage of phyto nutrients essential for human health and nutrition.
Health Benefits Of Walnuts:
Now coming straight to our prime topic of concern is the Health benefits of walnuts. So let us look below for understanding some of the most crucial health benefits of walnuts.
- Walnut For heart health: Walnuts are greatly beneficial for the heart. The presence of a larger quantity of antioxidants and also due to the presence of these antioxidants in a mixed manner; walnuts are known to be effective in greater cardiovascular functioning. The presence of omega 3 fatty acids in walnuts assists in lowering of blood pressure and reduces the risk of heart strokes.
- Walnut Benefits in Fight Against Cancer: A study at Marshall University School of Medicine in West Virginia found that taking around 28 walnut everyday helps in reducing the risk in breast cancer because of the antioxidants and phytosterols provided by it. So, walnuts are helpful in reducing breast cancers, prostrate cancers and various other cancer developments mainly due to the antioxidants. The presence of omega 3 fatty acids which are known for their anti oxidant properties, aids in cancer prevention.
- Walnut Helps in Treating Type 2 Diabetes: There is presence of mono and polyunsaturated fats in walnuts. Due to the presence of such unsaturated fats, it is known that walnuts are highly essential in reducing the type 2 diabetes. These mono and polyunsaturated fats helps in insulin sensitivity.
- Health Benefits of Walnuts in Reducing Certain Metabolic Syndromes: Walnuts are beneficial for patients diagnosed with metabolic syndromes. It is recommended that one ounce of walnuts everyday for about three months can help in treating or reducing metabolic syndrome greatly.
- Benefits of Walnuts to Skin Health: The astringent property of walnut oil helps in preventing dryness of skin. It is thus highly used in the cosmetic industry, especially for better skin health.
- Benefits in Providing Relaxation and Managing Stress: Walnuts and walnut oils are essential in reducing or managing stress in a wonderful way.
- Some other health benefits of walnuts includes its ability in reducing obesity or prevention of excessive weight gain, better mental health benefits like benefits in reducing depression, Alzheimer's etc., helps in bone health and also the MLT or melatonin component present in walnut help in good sleep.
Some Other Benefits of Walnuts:
- Crushed walnut kernels are sprinkled over salads, desserts and some cream based preparations.
- Walnut kernels can be added as toppings in pizza, yogurt or pies for its sweet and nutty taste.
- Candied walnuts can be used as excellent seafood toppings.
How To Select And Store Walnuts For Attaining The Best Benefits:
It is very true that walnuts are available in markets all round the year. You get these nuts in various forms like the shelled walnut, unshelled walnut, salted walnut, etc. However, you must keep a strict note while selecting or purchasing walnuts. Here below are some of the essential points of considerations while choosing walnuts.
- Make sure to check if the walnut is bright brown in color, compact and uniform in size.
- Check that they are free from spots, molds and any kinds of cracks.
- Take them in your hand and check that they feel heavy in weight
Now coming to the storage of walnuts, keep the following points of consideration while storing them.
- In case you have the shelled walnuts, keep them in airtight containers and place them in refrigerators for proper storage.
- In case of the unshelled walnuts, keep them in cool and dry places which can help you store the walnuts for several months.
How To Prepare And Serve Walnuts In The Most Effective Way:
There are no strict rules or recipes for preparing walnuts. They are as simple as the 1,2,3 tasks. All you need is just chop them up and serve on the salads, vegetable dishes, desserts etc. Here below are some of the quick and easy walnuts serving ways.
- Crush the walnuts and use them as toppings on yogurt along with the maple syrup.
- You can also add walnuts to your non vegetarian recipes like chicken recipes.
- Walnuts can also be added to the fruits and vegetable salads.
- You can also roast the walnuts and take them in diet. Make sure you are doing this gently at about 75 degree centigrade for not more than 15-29 minutes and also make sure to prevent the healthy walnut oil while roasting.
- There is one more mouth watering and healthy recipe prepared from walnuts and known as walnut granola. To make this, mix half cup of honey, one tablespoon of vanilla, 3-4 tablespoon of blackstrap molasses, one teaspoon of cinnamon and other preferred spices along with ginger. Now take 6-8 rolled oats in a large bowl and mix the prepared mixture to it and bake at 135 degrees for 45 minutes. After cooling add one cup of walnuts to it.
Safety Concerns Regarding Walnut
Some people do have allergies to walnuts or any of the tree nuts. There are chances that when such people take walnut or walnut diets, they might get hold of some serious symptoms like vomiting, abdominal pain, swelling throat and swollen lips, chest congestion and breathing issues etc. In case you know about your walnut allergic conditions, then do keep yourself away from the walnut diets.
"It is good to be healthy. But it is better to keep safe from any unhealthy conditions." Keep yourself safe and enjoy a healthy living.