10 Health Benefits of Almonds

1 – Almonds and Diabetes

Research has shown that eating almonds can help type 2 diabetes patients maintain their blood glucose levels.

One study showed that eating 1 ounce of almonds immediately before a high-starch meal resulted in a 30% reduction in post-meal glucose levels for type 2 diabetes patients, in comparison to a 7% reduction for non-diabetics.

In another study, 137 people who had an elevated risk of diabetes were randomly assigned to eat 43g of almonds a day or no almonds for 4 weeks. People who ate the almonds felt less hungry and they had lower postprandial blood glucose levels.

Studies have also showed an inverse relationship between regular nut consumption and diabetes.

2 – Almonds and Weight Loss

Research has shown that almonds raise levels of the hormone cholecystokinin. Cholecystokinin is a peptide hormone which is associated with a satisfied feeling of fullness. Although almonds can leave both women and men stay feeling fullness, women can stay feeling full for a longer time.

According to other research, including almonds in a diet could promote the exclusion of less nutritious foods. This improves the entire nutritional quality of diet.

Researchers have also discovered that almonds appear to help prevent carbohydrates from being absorbed. They also stop their own fat from being absorbed.

Another study revealed that supplementing a low calorie diet with almonds boosts weight loss. The almond supplemented diet was associated with a 62% bigger reduction in weight. There was also a 50% bigger reduction in waist circumference and a 56% bigger reduction in fat mass. The monounsaturated fat present in almonds helps to satisfy the appetite and prevent overeating.

Health Benefits of Almonds

3 – Almonds and Cholesterol

Research has established that eating a variety of heart healthy foods which includes almonds can help decrease LDL cholesterol levels as much as statin medication. Study participants who consumed almonds reduced their LDL cholesterol by almost 7%.

4 – Almonds and Energy

Almonds are a good source of riboflavin, copper and manganese.

Riboflavin helps with production of red blood cells and releasing energy from carbohydrates.

Copper and manganese are components in an enzyme that stops free radicals in mitochondria. Mitochondria are where the cells produce energy.

5 – Almonds and Blood Pressure

Magnesium deficiency in is associated with blood pressure problems. Almonds are a good source of magnesium, which can help to lower blood pressure levels. A corrected magnesium deficiency can result in significant reductions in blood pressure.

Almonds are also a good source of potassium. Potassium is linked to lower blood pressure because it promotes vasodilation.

6 – Almonds and Alzheimer’s

The nutrients riboflavin and L-carnitine found in almonds have been shown to increase brain activity. These nutrients can help with the formation of new neural pathways and reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s. Almonds also contain substances that behave like cholinesterase inhibitors. Cholinesterase inhibitors are agents used to treat dementia in patients with Alzheimer’s

In an animal study, Alzheimer’s mice that ate an almond rich diet performed much better on memory tests compared to mice that ate a standard diet.

Health Benefits of Almonds

7 – Almonds and Heart Health

Four large scale studies have linked nut consumption to a lower risk for heart disease. People who eat nuts 5 times a week have about a 50% reduction in risk of heart attack.

Regular potassium intake reduces risk of cardiovascular disease and ischemic heart disease.

8 – Almonds and Cancer

Almonds prevented colon cancer in rats that ate almonds and were exposed to a colon cancer-causing agent.

9 – Almonds and Gallstones

People who eat nuts frequently are 25% less likely to have a cholecystectomy. A cholecystectomy is a procedure to remove the gallbladder which is often performed as a result of gallstones.

The insoluble fiber content in almonds helps prevent gallstones by binding to bile acids in the gut and removing them from the body. The magnesium and calcium in almonds also binds to bile acids in the gut.

10 – Almonds and Bone Health

The magnesium and calcium found in almonds are two nutrients crucial to bone health and the prevention of osteoporosis.

Nutrients in Almonds

Almonds are an excellent source of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. They are also a great source of protein, potassium, magnesium, calcium, iron, zinc and vitamin E.

They also contain many antioxidants like the flavonoids quercetin and kaempferol.

Almonds nutritional value per 100g:

  • How many calories in almonds – 576
  • How much protein is in almonds – 21g
  • How many carbs in almonds – 22g
  • What is the fat content of almonds – 49g

History of Almonds

Almonds are thought to have originated in Asia. They have since Biblical times been cultivated in the Mediterranean, especially in Spain and Italy.

The U.S. supplies 88 % of worldwide almond production with most of it grown in California. Almonds are also grown in Turkey, Spain, Italy and Italy.

Health Benefits of Almonds

Infographics via:Greatist, Kaitlyn Richert, Nuts for Life
References for Health Benefits of Almonds: PMID: 18716179,  PMID: 14574348, PMID: 21570268, PMID: 20871769