We’re back with answers to your most craved questions about walnuts. In Part 1 of the You Asked and We Answered series, we learned about the discovery of walnuts and how they grow. This time we’ll learn about health benefits of walnuts and why they make us so smart (and we have the sources to back it up)!
1. Are Walnuts Good for You?
Packed with nutrients, such as healthy fats, protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals, of course walnuts are good for you! They contain alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), a type of omega-3 fatty acid that is essential for brain health. Walnuts are like superpowers for your brain! Researchers have discovered that eating walnuts improves cognitive function and may prevent age-related cognitive decline. They can also help ease aches and pains in the body because they are a major source of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds.
2. Which Walnuts Are the Healthiest?
All walnuts are healthy, but different varieties offer slightly different nutritional benefits. At Unbound Snacks, we grow Chandler walnuts, an English variety. We know that black walnuts may have more protein, but ours carry more omega-3 fatty acids, and that’s what makes them super-healthy. In a study reported in the journal Nutrients, researchers found that eating just a handful of walnuts daily can reduce body fat and help you gain lean body mass. English walnuts also contain high amounts of B vitamins, which are important for your metabolism, immune system, and nervous system. We may be biased, but English walnuts sound like the winner here!
3. Will Walnuts Increase Blood Sugar?
Quite the opposite – because walnuts contain fiber, protein, and good fats, eating them actually helps you manage hunger and moderate your blood sugar levels. According to a study in Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism, walnuts prevent unhealthy food cravings and therefore potentially help weight loss. In another study, researchers found that including walnuts in your diet significantly lowers the risk of type 2 diabetes in women.
4. Will Walnuts Lower Cholesterol?
Not only do walnuts help lower cholesterol, but they also help fight other risks of cardiovascular disease. Don’t just take our word for it, you can read it in a study in The Journal of Nutrition. The study found that eating walnuts helps decrease low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) — also known as the “bad” cholesterol — and high blood pressure, both of which are major risks for heart disease. We love walnuts, and our hearts love them too!
5. Are Walnuts Gluten Free?
Yes, walnuts in their pure form are gluten free. Walnuts do not contain the protein gluten that is found in certain grains such as wheat, barley, and rye. However, we recommend you proceed with caution, as seasoned walnuts may contain gluten in the seasoning ingredients. Processing facilities that handle walnuts as well as gluten-containing grains can also lead to gluten contamination.
A Handful a Day …
You Asked and We Answered Part 3 will dive into questions containing dogs and the Walnut Cookie’s mom! Say what? Stay tuned to find out!