Cashew nuts are the top most underrated nutritious healthy snacks. Almonds and walnuts are great for health, however, the Kaju ( cashew nuts) as we call it in India causes cholesterol and is fattening. Cashews are a nutrient dense superfood and this nut simply wants to inform you that since you have a liver, you’re the one producing the cholesterol. After all, it is only a plant not some animal or dreadful human that it can produce cholesterol says Rujuta Diwekar, Indian Superfoods.
Are you looking for a healthy heart, low cholesterol, weight loss, gorgeous skin, strong bones, and an anti-depressant all in one? Look no further. Go munch some Cashew Nuts!
Sounds corny, right! After all the hype created by the Food bloggers and media. But trust me, you must add back cashew nuts as Cashew Nuts- World’s Healthiest Superfood.
Originated from Brazil, cashew nuts are highly power packed in minerals and vitamins are finding its way into many Indian delicacies. It comes with a great shelf life which makes it available year around.
Nutritional Value Of Cashew Nuts
The powerhouse of essential minerals likes copper, calcium, magnesium, iron, phosphorous, potassium, zinc, sodium, and proteins as well. Cashews also contain vitamins such as vitamin C, E, K, B1, B3, and B6. They are a great source of monounsaturated fat with no bad cholesterol when consumed in moderation.
With all such power packed nutritional value, Cashew Nuts deserve to be on our Superfood list. You should go nuts for nuts.
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Cashew has earned a bad rep associating it with gaining weight, cholesterol and what not. I would like you to read this post till the end and break through all the myths and to know the truth of the matter. Just so you know no matter how good or bad a food is it all boils down to the calories it has. Cashews are good fat and you can’t deny the high caloric value. Moderation is the key thing. While a considerable amount of cashew provide multiple health benefits.
You eat almonds, and walnuts for all the good they have but exclude Cashews for the bad rep they have earned for baseless and logic less assumptions made by silly food writers and so called fancy doctors and honestly nutritionists as well.
8 Interesting & Remarkable Health Benefits of Cashew Nuts
1. Cashew Nuts aids in Maintaining Ideal Weight
The Journal of Nutrition states epidemiological evidence indicates constantly that raw nut (non-salted or flavored) consumers (in moderation) have a lower BMI than non-consumers. Cashews (nuts) are packed with good fat omega 3 fatty acids that rev up the metabolism to burn out excess fat.
It is a must-have snack for a weight loss aspirant. It keeps you fuller for longer periods which prevents overeating. It is nutrition dense food it supplies so many nutrients which help in burning fat but the only trick is to have them raw and in moderation.
I keep repeating this in almost all of my posts so that it comes naturally to you guys.
Good fat or bad fat, healthy food or unhealthy food at the end of the day all have calories in it. Fat foods have more calories which are why we need to limit the consumption the same.
On the other hand, fancy diets completely exclude the good fat from diets as a result of which glow of the skin goes away, you become dull and energy less, you may lose weight but as long as you follow the diet once switch and bam you’re back.
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Myth: Cashew nuts are fattening. Big No for weight loss.
Fact: Rich in Vitamin B, critical for carbohydrate metabolism and for ensuring that you never reach that dreaded weight-loss plateau.
Note: All Myths vs Facts is from Indian Superfoods, Rujuta Diwaker, Nutritionist
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2. Monounsaturated Fats for the Healthy Heart
Cashews are a great source of good fat as they contain MUFA and PUFA. These healthy fats are good for the heart. They are vital for the development of the brain and prevent blood clotting.
It cuts the bad cholesterol if consumed raw and in moderation.
It is even good for diabetics. Bad cholesterol is a threat for various cardiovascular diseases.
Cashews nuts are rich in dietary fiber which are highly essential for our body to absorb the nutrient the fat-soluble vitamins like vitamin A, D, E, K as they produce fatty acids that are potent for the development of brain and blood clotting.
Lately, studies suggest unsaturated fat enhances the level of HDL Cholesterol, reduces triglycerides and eventually lowers the blood pressure.
Myth: Avoid if you have Cholesterol
Fact: It’s phytosterol and stanols will not only reduce the LDL and help improve HDL but also reduce absorption of cholesterol from the small intestine. Overall a bad news for Pharma companies selling statins, if you add cashew nuts back into your diet in moderation and in raw form.
One must add raw nuts in their meals to add value to their meals and overall health. Olive oil, coconut oil, fish, vegetable oils are other sources of consuming unsaturated fats to the body.
Myth: Avoid if you have a heart condition
Fact: Mineral and vitamin rich, especially vitamin E, cashews works as an anti-ageing and is particularly good for heart conditions. Prevents plaque build-up and lowers blood pressure, two big precursors of heart disease. It also has copper which is vital to keep your blood vessels in working order.
3. Cashew Nuts are Boon for Skin & Hair
Cashews are power packed in copper, selenium, zinc, iron, magnesium, and iron and phosphorous. The higher percentage of copper and selenium is not only good for skin and hair but in most of the cases prevents cancer as well.
“Copper is an essential ingredient when it comes to healthy skin and hair as it gives skin the color and hair its pigment.”
There is approximately 75 to 150 mg. of copper in the adult human body. This mineral helps in the conversion of iron into hemoglobin.
It stimulates the growth of red blood cells. It is also an integral part of certain digestive enzymes. It makes the amino acid tyrosine usable, enabling it to work as the pigmenting factor for hair and skin.
It is also essential for the utilization of vitamin C. A copper deficiency may result in bodily weakness, digestive disturbances and impaired respiration suggest Dr. HK Bhakru, Nature Cure. Also, they are great sources of phytochemicals, proteins, and antioxidants.
4. Source of Dietary Fibres
Dietary fibers aids in better digestion but again in appropriate quantity as overconsumption may lead to bloating and intestinal gas concern. As per studies, cashews have a decent amount of dietary fibers.
Our body needs two types of essential dietary fibers known as palmitic acid and oleic acid as they are not produced by the body and only acquired through nutrition.
5. Reduces the risk of developing gallstones
A study suggests those who eat, at least, an ounce of raw cashew nuts every week has less chance of developing gallstones, than non-consumers.
6. Cashew Nuts Prevents Blood Disease
Copper helps in the conversion of iron into hemoglobin. Consuming cashews in moderation on a regular basis may help in avoiding any sort of blood diseases. Copper also eliminates free radicals from the body. The deficiency of copper can lead to anemia.
7. Assists the Body in Creating Energy
Cashews contain one more essential vitamin known as thiamine commonly known as Vitamin B1, which plays a vital role in converting sugar to energy.
Thiamine Known as anti-beberi, anti-neuritic and anti-ageing vitamin, thiamine plays an important role in the normal functioning of the nervous system, the regulation of carbohydrates and good digestion. It protects heart muscle, stimulates brain action and helps prevent constipation.
It has a mild diuretic effect. Valuable sources of this vitamin are a wheat germ, yeast, the outer layer of whole grains, cereals, pulses, nuts, peas, legumes, dark green leafy vegetables, milk, egg, banana, and apple.
The deficiency of thiamine can cause serious impairment of the digestive system and chronic constipation, loss of weight, diabetes, mental depression, nervous exhaustion and weakness of the heart.
The recommended daily allowance for this vitamin is about two milligrams for adults and 1.2 mg.for children. The need for this vitamin increases during illness, stress, and surgery as well as during pregnancy and lactation. When taken in a large quantity, say up to 50 mg., it is beneficial in the treatment of digestive disorders, neuritis, and other nervous troubles as well as mental depression.
For best results, all other vitamins of B group should be administered simultaneously. Prolonged ingestion of large doses of any one of the isolated B complex vitamins may result in high urinary losses of other B-vitamins and lead to deficiencies of these vitamins as mentioned in Dr. HK Bhakru, Nature Cure.
A lack thiamine in your diet can lead to some very serious medical issues ranging from muscle pain to even the memory loss.
8. Can Help Treat Depression
(The following gist comes right from Indian Superfoods by Rujuta Diwekar)
Magnesium is essential for nerves to relax. The next time you’re PMSing and want to kill someone or just die crying, just chill and grab some cashew nuts or if your husband is middle aged and wakes up in the middle of the night with a cramping calf; let him munch on cashew nuts too. The tryptophan (an amino acid) and vitamin B combination are leading to an ever-increasing interest in using Kaju as a natural antidepressant.
Cashews are easily available at Amazon.
Myth: Avoid if you’re diabetic
Fact: Low GI, rich in essential fatty acids, rich in fiber, if cashews are not anti-diabetic then nothing is. Moderation is the key.
Myth: Avoid if you have PCOD or hypothyroidism
Fact: Great source of iron, prevents adult acne, a sign of hormonal imbalance, improves fertility and works like a diuretic. Need I say more?
So, what are you waiting for, go Nuts!