Health Benefits of Walnuts

You can crunch your way to better health.  And, I’m not talking about sit-ups.  I’m talking about walnuts.  Not only will adding walnuts to your diet add “crunch”, they are packed with really great nutrition.  Walnuts are a good source of protein, and they are high in fiber.  They are also a good source of Omega-3 fatty acids, manganese, copper, calcium, chromium, and potassium. 

Walnuts contain antioxidants and anti-inflammatory nutrients.  They are high in Vitamin E, which provides protection from heart disease.  Walnuts also help decrease your risk of cancer, especially prostate cancer.  Studies have also shown that eating walnuts can decrease your risk of gall stones, decrease cholesterol levels, help maintain healthy blood pressure, help with bone health, and help those with Type 2 Diabetes.  Walnuts also aid in brain function, and like cherries, can help regulate sleep.

It is recommended that you eat seven shelled walnuts or 14 walnut halves daily to reap these benefits.  Walnuts, as are all tree nuts, are considered a high calorie food.  But, that should not steer you away from eating them.  Their health benefits are incredible, so just watch your overall calorie intake. 

As you know, I shop at Trader Joe’s, and that is where I usually purchase my walnuts.  I buy a bag of their shelled walnut halves and keep them in my refrigerator.  Then, I just grab a handful from the fridge – they are a great crunchy snack.  You can also add walnuts to salads, vegetable dishes, pasta dishes and fruit dishes.  You can sprinkle them on your oatmeal, cereal, and yogurt.  And, you can include them in your favorite stuffing.

So, grab a handful of walnuts and crunch your way to better health and nutrition.

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