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Nuts in your diet. They can help with losing weight but can become a stumbling block

Picking at nuts instead of crisps is “in” and healthy as well. They are a source of quality healthy fats our body needs not only during weight loss. But they can become a stumbling block.

Nuts are among healthy fats and they are more than desirable in our diet when we want to lose weight. “They are an excellent source of fats enriched with a wide range of beneficial substances such as:

  • vitamins – in particular B vitamins and E vitamin,
  • minerals – in particular magnesium, calcium and potassium,
  • fibre,
  • proteins – on average approx. 15 to 20%,
  • and they are an important source of phytonutrients that are antioxidants and beneficial for our immune system.

They are an excellent source of nutrients if we eat them in adequate quality and quantity”, says Jiří Skála, a nutrition expert. Remember the last sentence, Jiří said. We will get back to it.

Fats that are abundant in nuts help us with keeping hormonal balance and mental wellness, our digestion is fine, as well as menstrual cycle. What’s more, we have shiny hair, strong nails and radiant skin.

Since our diet should contain twice as much plant fats than animal fats – this ratio 2 : 1 plant vs. animal fats is recommended also by Jiří Skála – nuts are convenient for us. You can complement them with high quality oils (olive, flax, hemp oil...), avocado and seeds. The highest quality source of animal fats are fish.

 

How to include nuts in your diet correctly? 3 practise-proven hints

You already know why you should eat nuts. But how to do it without taking any risks and what type of nuts should we eat while on a diet? Choose the type you like. For your body, it is the best when you alternate the types since their nutritional values vary a bit as showed in the table below. So why eating nuts during weight loss can become a stumbling block?

 

Beware of quantity. When you eat too many nuts you will not lose weight

It is not ideal to open a half-kilo pack of cashew nuts and eat it up during one day while working on computer. Well, they contain a lot of beneficial substances but their calorific value is not negligible. Just the contrary. A handful of nuts has the same energy as a quarter of kilo of cooked rice.

Have a look at the table below where you will find your favourite types of nuts listed from the least fatty to the fattiest and don’t forget that when you are on a KetoDiet you should consume approx. 25g of nuts a day and combine them with other sources of plant and animal fats.

Amount of energy and nutrients in 1 handful (50g) of nuts

Cashew

1,222 kJ 9 g proteins 13 g carbohydrates 23 g fats

Pistachio

1,309 kJ 10 g proteins 9 g carbohydrates 25 g fats

Almonds

1,333 kJ 10 g proteins 4 g carbohydrates 27 g fats

Hazelnuts

1,440 kJ 13 g proteins 4 g carbohydrates 31 g fats

Walnuts

1,447 kJ 8 g proteins 9 g carbohydrates 32 g fats

Brazil nuts

1,475 kJ 7 g proteins 2 g carbohydrates 34 g fats

Pecans

1,532 kJ 5 g proteins 7 g carbohydrates 36 g fats

Macadam nuts

1,502 kJ 4 g proteins 3 g carbohydrates 38 g fats

Source of data: kaloricketabulky.cz

Calorific value and amount of fats in nuts should not scare you. It is important to be realistic about how many nuts you can eat a day and not to spoil your diet.

But the other extreme – avoiding nuts – is not right either. Well, not only nuts but fats in general. “When you leave out fat from your diet you risk not only hormonal imbalance, worse quality of hair and nails but also mental problems. They may lead to anxiety, irritation as well as fatigue. Fats wrap nerve fibres,” explains Jiří Skála, a nutrition expert, and adds that even your vision may deteriorate over time. Fat-soluble vitamins just can’t solve anywhere so your body will not absorb them.

 

Quality over quantity. And for nuts it applies twice over

Nuts are not particularly cheap but you know you can’t consume kilos of them, so it’s better to choose high quality. Nuts are prone to moulds, so you better verify where they are from and how they have been processed. And last but not least…

 

Only natural. Forget salt and other flavourings

What type of nuts can help with losing weight? Salty, sweet, wasabi or any other flavour nuts are not the right choice. Eat only natural or dry-fried nuts. Read the nutritional information and ingredients on the pack carefully before purchase. You should not buy anything else than 100% natural nuts.

 

Hazelnuts and cocoa in KetoDiet protein creamNuts in your kitchen. They can liven up sweet as well as salty meals

Picking at nuts is not the only way of consuming them. They are a perfect fit for your kitchen. They can take a lot of meals to another level. How to use them?

Add nuts to your favourite breakfast protein mash or just to a yogurt or curd cheese with fruit. They are perfect for baking as well. Either chopped or finely ground. Add them to your home-made granola, make healthier muffins, what about sweet potatoes muffins? Or just try protein waffles.

Perfect combination! Hazelnuts and cocoa in a finely-tuned protein cream.

Not only in a sweet variant. Nuts can become part of salty meals as well. Add them to pasta, risotto or salads. A combination of beetroot, goat cheese and walnuts will not wear out. Another excellent combination is sliced almonds and fresh mango, ricotta or parmesan. If you have 2 extra minutes, try to dry-fry the nuts and they will be really crispy in your meal.

 

Author: Nikola Nevečeřalová

Photo: KetoLife, KetoDiet

 

You have lowered your daily dose of nuts but you haven’t lost any kilos? Do not stress out. You can read about how stress impacts your weight loss in our previous article.

 

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