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Admin Reporter- Pooja

May 23 2019


The number of nuts you should eat every day (and why you don't need to activate them)

It's no secret that the peanut has been nothing more than an imposter, a legume seizing our throats and making us itchy since who knows when.

But almonds, cashews, coconuts, pecans, pistachios, macadamias and walnuts aren't nuts either — they're drupe seeds. Who knew?!

Whatever they are, research clearly shows they're really good for us, with health experts saying we could probably be eating more nuts for our health. In fact, one study found people who ate a handful of nuts a day were likely to live longer than those who didn't eat nuts.

From raw versus roasted to whether you need to know or care about activated almonds, here's everything you need to know about eating nuts.

Lesson 1: Go raw and store in a cool, dark place
Buying nuts? A variety is best

It's users choice when it comes to which nuts to buy and eat, but if health and nutritional benefits are on your mind, you'll want to mix it up, University of Otago's Department of Human Nutrition Associate Professor Rachel Brown says.

Nuts offer beneficial vitamins and minerals in varying quantities, and eating a variety ensures we're reaping the benefits of each.

"We usually suggest that you mix them up if you want the best benefits because then you get all the good fats and micronutrients," Dr Brown says.

Choosing raw and unsalted varieties is preferable says public health nutritionist, Rosemary Stanton.

Raw nuts will have a shorter shelf life than roasted ones says dietitian Belinda Neville, but if you're an avid crunch seeker, it might be worth buying raw nut varieties and roasting them at home.

"Some studies show that if you roast nuts at really high temperatures, you'll lose nutrients but if you're roasting at lower temperatures at home, the losses are negligible," Dr Brown says.

Studies conducted by Dr Brown found there was no difference in the cholesterol lowering properties of roasted nuts compared to raw nuts, when roasted for 10 minutes at 140 degrees Celsius.

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