Are walnuts worth the weekly splurge?

If you haven’t, pick up a bag of walnuts during the next grocery shopping trip. Here’s a nutritional lowdown of that buy, courtesy of the Aerinlé team. 

Walnuts are members of the tree nut family, along with cashews, hazelnuts, macadamia nuts and pistachios. Each has a unique nutritional profile.

Shelled or whole walnuts are commonly found in supermarkets and organic specialty stores around Singapore. Note that the flaky outermost layer of a walnut contains up to 90 per cent of its antioxidants, so be sure to leave it on!

These antioxidants have anti-ageing properties, and fight against cancer and neurological diseases. Vitamin E in these nuts promote healthy skin. According to a recent study, regular consumption of nuts can help to reduce inflammation.

If you need more convincing, here are three things that make walnuts a great buy:

Are walnuts worth the weekly splurge?

1) Walnuts can up your metabolism

A recent study published in the Journal Of Nutrition found that these nuts raised the metabolism of obese mice. These mice were put on a diet that was high in fat and sugar. “Walnuts alone had a good effect when they were part of the high-fat diet,” Dr Neil Shay from Oregon State University told Xinhua.

While acknowledging that further research was needed, Dr Shay quipped: “I think it’s safe to say that if you include a serving of walnuts (along with other healthy foods) in your daily diet, it would do no harm and might have beneficial effects.”

2) They are bundles of magical Omega-3

Omega-3 fatty acids found in these nuts are essential for good health. They lower cholesterol levels and prevent the formation of blood clots. In addition, these acids reduce one’s risk of heart failure, stroke and coronary artery disease. The list goes on – Omega-3 boosts brain health by improving memory and overall cognitive function.

3) Don’t worry about weight gain

Eating these nuts will not result in extra pounds, a year-long study presented at an Experimental Biology conference found. Participants who dedicated up to 15 per cent of a day’s calories to walnuts did not gain weight, Men’s Fitness reported. In fact, they reaped health benefits and had lower levels of bad cholesterol.

Walnuts are often consumed as they are. Roasted, sweetened or salted varieties are also available. They are extremely versatile and can used as toppings on yoghurt, salads, pies and vegetables.

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