All About Almonds: Almond Benefits, Almond Nutrition and the Whole Jingbang!
Almonds or badam are one of the most nutritionally dense tree nuts. If you know about how staggering almond nutrition is, then you will start including them in the diet.
While almonds are praised to confer good health for ages, we will tell you about almond nutrition and almond benefits real quick.:
- Almonds help in maintaining a good heart health
- Riboflavin and L-Carnitine present in almonds help prevent neurological decline.
- Antioxidant vitamins, protective vitamin A help in keeping the skin supple.
- Almond helps balance the rise in pH. Hence they are good for the gut.
- Are almonds good for weight loss? A BIG yes! Good fats coupled with dietary fibre make almond one of the best bets for weight loss
- Almond is full of vitamins and minerals like magnesium making it a great food for the hair.
They provide an array of essential nutrients and powerful phyto-chemicals such as Vitamin E, monounsaturated fatty acids, essential amino acids, fiber, biotin, potassium, magnesium, and manganese.
Let us now understand if soaking and de-skinning raw almonds help or not!
Soaked Almond Nutrition versus Raw Almond Nutrition; which to choose!
Have you wondered about this popular practice? Should you soak almonds or just have them as is? Here is the answer.
To uncover all the almond health benefits and almond nutrition, they need to be soaked overnight or for 8 hours before consumption.
The brown skin of badams contains an enzyme inhibitor that protects them until germination. Usually, for nuts and seeds, enough moisture and natural light are required for germination.
Soaked almonds are better because the moisture releases badam’s health benefits by removing the enzyme inhibitor to improve the nutrient availability.
Still wondering how to incorporate almond nutrition in your diet? Ask a Truweight Nutritionist for FREE! Click on the link and get started.
In addition, raw almonds contain anti-nutrients such as phytates and tannins that bind the nutrients in the gastrointestinal tract and make them unavailable in the intestine.
Soaking badams can lower these anti-nutrients considerably and improve the absorption and utilisation of the essential nutrients.
Not just that, soaking almonds improves their mouthfeel and taste too. It makes them softer and crispier.
Soaked almonds are easy to digest by everyone belonging to different age groups.
An Indian study found that soaked almonds’ nutrition is way better because it contains 2 times more protein than the raw almonds.
Hence, soaked badams or almond benefits include an anytime ideal high protein snack or taken as the first thing in the morning.
Myth about the Almond skin
Should you discard the skin for better badam health benefits?
Many believe that after soaking, the skin of the almonds needs to be peeled and only the kernel needs to be eaten.
Almond skin, also referred as almond bran, has high amounts of fibre, a nutrient useful in fermentation in the large intestine for a healthy gut.
Badams with skin provide 12% of total fibre making it one of the richest sources of edible nuts.
Almond skin contains good amounts of polyphenols that are antioxidants and may play role in reducing the chronic inflammatory diseases.
A study published in the Journal of Nutrition showed that almond skin has 20 potent antioxidant flavonoids. These flavonoids team up with the vitamin E found in the almond meat or kernel to double the antioxidant punch.
How many almonds can be taken in a day?
While small in size and serving, almonds can pack in a punch in terms of energy. For good health, you can consume 5-6 soaked almonds or badams in a day.
Another study published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that whole almonds,
as a part of a heart-healthy diet, can reduce the C-reactive protein a marker of artery-damaging inflammation as much as a statin drug.
Not just for adults, almonds and other nuts also qualify to be a great nutritious snack for children. Read the entire list of nutritious snacks for kids here!
So the next time you soak almonds, have them without discarding the skin.
How do you Soak Almonds?
Take a handful of almonds and soak them in a bowl of water after rinsing. Leave the almonds overnight at room temperature covered. The soaked almonds can be consumed with skin.
Almond Nutrition and Almond Health Benefits
1. Are Almonds good for your Heart?
Aren’t almonds in the same category as cashew? Almonds with monounsaturated fatty acids, vitamin E, and other antioxidants support heart health greatly.
Arginine, magnesium, and potassium are some of the key nutrients present in badams or almonds which are important for a healthy heart.
2. Almond Nutrition and Brain Health
Almonds support brain health as they contain Riboflavin (Vitamin B2) and L-carnitine, the two important nutrients for neurological activity and preventing a decline in the memory.
3. Almond Nutrition and Skin
Almonds are great for skin with a good dose of vitamin E and other antioxidants that nourish the skin and prevent ageing.
4. Almond Nutrition and The Gut
Almonds help with digestion by alkalizing the digestive tract, reduces the acid build-up and balances the body pH.
5. Almond Benefits: Are Almonds good for Weight Loss?
Yes, yes, and very much yes! Almonds with healthy fats and a good amount of dietary fiber have low glycemic index and provide high satiety.
These can prevent overeating and unhealthy snacking, an ideal food for weight watchers. We are gaga over the benefits offered by almonds.
Badams provide healthy fats and are gluten free, so you can eat them on a weight loss diet. Know more about it in our article Do Almonds Help In Weight Loss?
6. Are Almonds Good for the Hair?
If almond oil is touted to be the ultimate oil to prevent hair fall and hair breakage, then the parent almond should have many more benefits.
For one, they are rich in the mineral magnesium, a deficiency of which can cause hair fall. Also, the protein and vitamins E in almond benefits hair growth and maintenance.
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Chief Nutritionist, Truweight
Suhasini Mudraganam is a leading food scientist who was instrumental in designing the Truweight Food plan. She has done her MS in Nutrition from University of Missouri, USA and has over 14 years of global experience.