Why go nuts about tree nuts?
Tree nuts consumed regularly in the diet provide a plethora of health benefits. A dose of healthy fats, protein, and various vitamins are just the beginning to the list of these benefits. Although peanuts, almonds, and walnuts most commonly take the stage, it is important to not neglect the nutrient-rich pecans!
Here are some highlights of pecans:
1. Loaded with vitamins and minerals
Pecans contains many vitamins and minerals: magnesium, copper, calcium, potassium, folic acid (vitamin B9), vitamin A, E, and several B vitamins being the most noteworthy.
2. Provides a mood boost
There is an amino acid (building block of protein), tryptophan, found in pecans that boosts serotonin in the brain. Since serotonin is responsible for boosting mood, we can thank pecans for helping out our brain and cognitive function!
3. Guards against chronic diseases
There are abundant phytonutrients (natural compounds found in plants) found in pecans called flavonoids, which protect against many diseases such as difference cancers, as well as diabetes.
4. Decreases inflammation
Many tree nuts, including pecans, are rich in alpha-linoleic acid (ALA). This is an omega-3 fatty acid class (type of unsaturated "healthy" fat) that specifically provides anti-inflammatory benefits. This nutrient paired with the vitamin E and magnesium also present in pecans make this nut that much more of an anti-inflammatory powerhouse!
Gut health and digestion together can be greatly supported by the fiber, unsaturated fats, and polyphenols (another type of phytonutrient) present in pecans.
Stay tuned for our next post to find out 5 more health highlights of pecans, how often to consume nuts for optimal health, plus a comprehensive article featuring our very own Dietitian Christina!
Until Next Time,
Your Fuel Good RD Experts 🍍