Eating Nuts: Benefits and Dangers
Many of us eat nuts every week or even every day, but not many of us know their secrets - both helpful and dangerous ones!

Are you nuts for nuts? As we approach National Pecan Day celebrated on April 14, we’re eager to share some knowledge about pecan and other types of nuts. We’ve got an ace up our sleeve, too – many nuts are not nuts at all!

Pecan

Pecan

Let’s start with the hero of the week – pecan! Widely used for desserts and in baking, pecans are extremely good for health as they contain a big amount of Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, 63% of recommended daily allowance of manganese, 17% of copper RDA, and about 12% of Vitamin B1 RDA. Among all nuts, pecans are one of the most antioxidant-rich ones.

However, to be completely honest we have to admit that technically pecans are considered nuts only in cooking. To be more exact, we should call them tree nuts.

Recipes to try:

Chocolate Sandies with Pecan

Irresistible Pecan Pie

Amazing Pecan Coffee Cake

Almond

Almond

Almonds originated in the Middle East but today are known and frequently consumed all over the world. Almond is one of the healthiest nut varieties as it contains large amounts of fat and the optimum quantity of carbs and proteins. They are good for blood sugar and reduce insulin levels effectively.

In terms of botany, almonds aren’t nuts, too – they remind of peaches and are considered fruit.

Recipes to try:

Almond and Strawberry Salad

Slow Cooker Moroccan-Style Chicken with Almonds and Apricots

Almond Thumbprints with Raspberry

Walnut

Walnut

Similarly to almonds and pecans, walnuts are called “tree nuts” and are listed among the most popular nuts today. They are used both as snacks and as major ingredients in many recipes and contain 48% of recommended daily allowance of manganese, about 8% of Vitamin B6 RDA, and 7% of Vitamin B9 RDA. Besides, walnuts help decrease blood pressure, reduce diabetes risk, extend lifespan, and produce positive effects on the brain.

Recipes to try:

Rustic Apple Walnut Crostata with Gorgonzola

Baked Apples with Walnuts and Maple Syrup

Honey Walnut Shrimp

Pistachio

Pistachio

Think you’ve found the real nut at last? Not even close! Pistachio is a culinary nut, of course, but technically, it’s a seed of a fruit tree. However, this fact doesn’t prevent us from valuing this food for its special taste and add it to salads, ice creams, and even main dishes. Pistachios contain a lot of Vitamin B6 and copper, produce a good impact on exercise performance, and reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases.

Recipes to try:

Caramelized Brussels Sprouts with Pistachios

Pistachio Fluff Fruit Salad

Peanut

Peanut

Botanically, just like all the other culinary nuts mentioned above, peanuts aren’t really nuts as well – they are legumes. However, there are many reasons why peanuts are among one of the most popular nuts in the USA. They’re very tasty, can be consumed as an appetizer and added to lots of dishes. Besides, they reduce the risk of heart diseases and increase the level of magnesium.

Recipes to try:

Honey Roasted Peanuts

Gluten-Free Peanut Butter Cookies

Hazelnut

Hazelnut

Ta-da! We’ve found what we’ve been looking for! Hazelnut is a true nut – not a fruit, not a seed, and not even a legume! It’s one of the most culinary nutritious nuts, too, and is packed with health benefits. These nuts are extremely effective against cardiovascular diseases, can improve arterial dilation, and produce powerful antioxidant effects on our organism.

Recipes to try:

Warm Brussels Sprout Salad with Hazelnuts and Cranberries

Hazelnut-Mushroom Pilaf

Dangers of Nuts

Allergic to nuts

•    Roasted nuts taste better but are filled with “bad” saturated fats.

•    Many nuts are hard to digest.

•    Nuts contain much fat and are very high in calories, which makes it hard to measure portions properly.

•    The last but not the least: nuts are listed among the most allergenic foods alongside cow’s milk, eggs, and wheat. 

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