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Health Benefits of Nut Butters

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Health Benefits of Nut Butters

A Word of Caution

peanuts bag with allergy labelFood allergies affect 5% to 10% of people. Peanuts (which are legumes, like beans and peas), and tree nuts, like pecans and almonds, are common triggers. If you have a severe allergy, even something that has touched nuts can cause swelling, vomiting, and diarrhea. It could even inflame your throat and make it hard to breathe or talk. This is a potentially deadly condition called anaphylactic shock. Call 911 if you see these symptoms.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Weight Control

man’s feet on weight scaleIt’s true nuts have lots of fat, but that doesn’t mean you have to avoid them. The high protein and fiber keep you feeling full and energized. That could help you eat fewer calories and lose weight. And nuts may help your body burn more energy, even when you’re at rest. If you’re on a diet, you’re more likely to stick with it if you eat nuts. Just don’t overdo it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Good Fat

unsaturated saturated diptychMost of the fat in nuts is unsaturated, which is better for you than the saturated kind in meat or the trans fats in many processed foods. It may help stabilize your blood sugar and insulin, the hormone that regulates it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Packed With Nutrients

man shopping for peanut butterIt isn’t just the high protein, fiber, and healthy fats that are good for you. Nuts also have plenty of other nutrients like Vitamins E and B6, folic acid, niacin, magnesium, zinc, copper, and potassium. Just watch the ingredients on your brand of nut butter, peanut or otherwise. Some have added salt, sugar, preservatives, and unhealthy fats that could do more harm than good.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Antioxidants Aplenty

colon anatomyThese include minerals like selenium and manganese, vitamins C and E, as well as flavonoids, phenols, polyphenols, and other substances.  They work as a team to help protect your cells. And nuts are loaded with them. That could be part of the reason that people who eat more nuts and nut butters have healthier hearts. They may even help protect against colon cancer.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Keep Cholesterol in Check

clogged blood vesselHaving too much cholesterol can harden your arteries and lead to stroke and heart disease. Almonds, walnuts, and other tree nuts seem to lower it when it gets too high. Your body makes most of your cholesterol, but you get some of it from the food you eat. Luckily, nuts have little or none of the stuff.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Prevent and Control Type 2 Diabetes

checking blood glucoseThis is in part because they help control weight gain, as well as high levels of sugar (glucose) and fats (lipids) in your blood, which can lead to the disease. They may also keep the lining of your blood vessels (endothelium) stretchy and healthy, which prevents heart problems linked to diabetes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Heart Disease

checking ecg readoutAlso called cardiovascular disease, it happens when your blood vessels harden (your doctor will call this atherosclerosis). This can weaken your heart and lead to heart failure. It can also cause stroke, heart attack, or irregular heartbeats (a condition called arrhythmia). People who eat more nuts, or butters made from them, are less likely to get it. About 28 grams, or 2 tablespoons, two more times a week, seems to be enough to help.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Magnesium

magnesium food groupThis mineral is good for your nerves, muscles, bones, blood sugar, blood pressure, and even your genetic material, or DNA. If you’re like many Americans, you may not get enough. Nuts like cashews, almonds, and peanuts, and the butters made from them, have lots of it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Almond Butter

almond butterIt’s one of the more common types after the peanut version, and it’s a great source of vitamin B7, also called biotin. This nutrient is vital to help your body process the fat, sugar, and protein you eat. It also helps keep your blood sugar stable and your skin healthy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Brazil Nut Butter

brazil nutsThese nuts are an excellent source of selenium, which keeps your thyroid gland running, helps your body make genetic material (DNA), and boosts your immune system. It also seems to protect your cells against damaging particles called free radicals. And people who get less selenium may be more likely to get certain types of cancer.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cashew Butter

cashew butterThis one isn’t technically a nut, but the seed of a type of apple. The fruit itself is a highly prized delicacy in the coastal areas of Brazil where it grows. Whether you call it a nut or a seed, it’s a great source of copper, which your body needs to nourish tissues and blood, and produce energy. It may also have antioxidant properties that protect your cells against damage.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Walnut Butter

walnuts and food processorWalnuts are one of the best non-animal sources of heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Specifically, they provide a type called alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), which acts as a building block for other types of omega-3s. The butter isn’t always easy to find in stores, but you can whip up a batch at home in a food processor.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How to Avoid Mold

glass jars of nutsNuts sometimes get mold that can transfer to the butters they make. One mold makes aflatoxin, which may be a cause of liver cancer. But the FDA has rules and tests that make this far less common. And it’s really more of a problem in warm, humid climates outside the U.S. But if you make nut butters, store nuts in a cool, dry place and toss any moldy, shriveled, or discolored ones. Storing nuts in the freezer can also help stop spoilage.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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FOOD

Nigeria’s First Vitamin Water Omnia Enters Market – #Omniavitaminwater

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Omniavitaminwater

The product which is made from demineralized water infused with natural fruit extracts, vitamin and minerals, comes in four variants- Blackcurrant, Pineapple, Orange and Apple variants, and it is the first indigenously produced vitamin water in the country.

The new product which industry observers believe may reshape the non-alcoholic beverage market in Nigeria as it offers health-conscious consumers, non-alcoholic water beverages, provides the body with the necessary daily vitamins.

Nigeria’s First Vitamin Water Omnia Enters Market - #Omniavitaminwater

Speaking at the formal launch in Lagos, General Manager of Prime Foods, Alexis Odenigbo, Omnia Vitamin water contains vitamins and minerals that are beneficial to health.

She said the new product is part of Prime Foods and Beverages Ltd’s commitment to ensure that Nigerians get the very best quality and natural products that are not only healthy and safe for consumption, but also enhance consumers’ overall wellness.

“Omnia Vitamin Water is a zero-calorie drink that actually satisfies thirst, unlike other carbonated drinks. Each variant has a blend of vitamins and fruit extracts to deliver refreshing and naturally tasting hydration. There is no limit to the number of bottles that can be consumed by an individual because it contains vitamins and minerals that are beneficial to health.”

Earlier in her remark, a public health physician, Dr. Olajumoke Akisanya, said Most of people do not know about the quality of water they are drinking, and have no knowledge about it.
“We tend to just turn on the tap and fill in our glasses. But do you know how much water we have to drink every day or are the water you are drinking safe enough for you. What if you drink the water and then become contaminated with it. It is important to know everything about the water you are drinking so that you do not fall sick and in your own home.
“Vitamins and minerals are essential nutrients that our body needs to work properly. Most of us get all the vitamins and minerals we need by eating a healthy balanced diet. Omnia Vitamin Water contains our daily requirements of vitamins,” she added.

According to the company’s Director of Sales and Marketing, Dipo Isaac, Omnia Vitamins Water, is manufactured in a conducive environment, in compliance with very stringent processes and procedures that conform to Good Manufacturing Practices with State-of-the-art equipment and machinery.

“The company is committed to offering purely natural, safe, and healthier products in order to help people break free from the usage or consumption of toxic and harmful body care or Food products. The new Omnia Vitamin Water,” he added.

He said the product is now available in all parts of the country.

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FOOD

Healthy Eating for Knee Osteoarthritis

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Healthy Eating for Knee Osteoarthritis
When you make a plan to tackle your knee osteoarthritis (OA), don’t overlook the power of food. There’s no specific diet that treats your problem, but you can get some big health benefits if you eat smart. You’ll keep your weight under control, build strong cartilage, and cut some inflammation.
You don’t have to make a major overhaul to your diet. Follow these simple steps to keep your joints happy.

1. Cut Extra Calories

Your knees will feel better if you keep your waistline trim. When you drop those extra pounds, you’ll put less stress on your joints. A good way to lower your calorie count: Take smaller portions, avoid sugary foods and drinks, and eat mostly plant-based foods.

2. Eat More Fruits and Veggies

Feel free to eat plenty of these. Many are loaded with antioxidants — substances that can help protect your cells from damage.

Some antioxidants, found in fruits and veggies like apples, onions, shallots, and strawberries, may also help reduce joint inflammation and pain.

3. Add Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-3s may help relieve your joint pain and decrease morning stiffness. They work by reducing inflammation in your body.

One easy way to add them to your diet is to eat two 3-ounce servings of fatty fish each week. Some of the best sources of omega-3s are trout, salmon, mackerel, herring, tuna, and sardines.

4. Use Olive Oil in Place of Other Fats

One study shows that a compound in olive oil, called oleocanthal, has the same anti-inflammatory effects as ibuprofen. Olive oils with the strongest flavor have the highest amount.

To add olive oil to your diet without extra calories, use it in place of other fats, such as butter.

5. Get Enough Vitamin C

A key element for joint health, vitamin C helps build collagen and connective tissue. A lot of tasty foods can give you this nutrient. Try citrus fruits, red peppers, strawberries, broccoli, cabbage, and kale. Aim for the recommended amount of 75 milligrams a day for women or 90 milligrams a day for men.

6. Avoid High Cooking Temperatures

Meat cooked at high temperatures makes compounds that can cause inflammation in your body. They’re called advanced glycation end products (AGEs), and they’re linked to diseases such as arthritis, heart disease, and diabetes.

You can reduce your levels of AGEs if you cut back on grilled, fried, broiled, and microwaved meats. It’s also helpful to limit processed foods, as they are often cooked at high temperatures.

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Food Sources of Potassium

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Potassium Rich Foods
Like calcium and sodium, potassium is a mineral that’s found in some foods. Having the right amount of potassium in your diet helps to keep you healthy, so it’s crucial to eat plenty of potassium-rich foods.

Potassium Rich Foods

Many of the foods that you already eat contain potassium. The foods listed below are high in potassium. If you need to boost the amount of potassium in your diet, make healthy food choices by picking items below to add to your menu.

Many fresh fruits and vegetables are rich in potassium:

  • Bananas, oranges, cantaloupe, honeydew, apricots, grapefruit (some dried fruits, such as prunes, raisins, and dates, are also high in potassium)
  • Cooked spinach
  • Cooked broccoli
  • Potatoes
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Mushrooms
  • Peas
  • Cucumbers
  • Zucchini
  • Pumpkins
  • Leafy greens

Juice from potassium-rich fruit is also a good choice:

  • Orange juice
  •  Tomato juice
  • Prune juice
  • Apricot juice
  • Grapefruit juice

Certain dairy products, such as milk and yogurt, are high in potassium (low-fat or fat-free is best).

Some fish contain potassium:

  • Tuna
  • Halibut
  • Cod
  • Trout
  • Rockfish

Beans or legumes that are high in potassium include:

  • Lima beans
  • Pinto beans
  • Kidney beans
  • Soybeans
  • Lentils

Other foods that are rich in potassium include:

  • Salt substitutes (read labels to check potassium levels)
  • Molasses
  • Nuts
  • Meat and poultry
  • Brown and wild rice
  • Bran cereal
  • Whole-wheat bread and pasta

How Much You Need

You should get 4,700 milligrams (mg) of potassium every day. Most Americans don’t meet that goal.

Your needs might be different if you have kidney disease. Some people with kidney disease should get less potassium than the 4,700 mg guideline. If your kidneys don’t work well, too much potassium could stay in your body, which can cause nerve and muscle problems. If you have kidney disease and your doctor hasn’t already told you what your potassium limit is, ask about it.

On the Label?

For a long time, potassium wasn’t listed on the Nutrition Facts food labels of packaged food items. But in May 2016, the Nutrition Facts rules were changed, and potassium will now be listed. Companies will need to update their food labels on or before January 2020. That should make it easier for you to track your potassium intake for better health.

Why You Need Potassium

For starters, it helps your blood pressure. It does this in two different ways:

  • First, with the aid your kidneys, potassium helps remove extra sodium from your body through your urine. This is a good thing, because too much sodium can cause high blood pressure.
  • Second, potassium helps the walls of your blood vessels to relax or loosen up. When they’re too tense or rigid, it can lead to high blood pressure, which can cause heart problems. Getting enough potassium is good for your heart.

You also need enough potassium for good muscle health — so that your muscles can flex or contract the way they should. And your nerves need potassium so that they can work well.

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