What is your favourite past-time snack? Although most of you might like to eat cashew nuts, your might restrict yourself from doing so due to its high calories count. While cashew nuts often make their way to desserts such as the yummykaju katlis,kheer and brownies, here are more reasons you should gorge on this nut. Packed with many nutrients that boost your metabolism and tastes good, our expert Neha Chandna, a nutritionist, tells you why cashew nuts should rank as a healthy snack.
# 1 Keeps your heart healthy
Cashew nuts are rich in good fats and have zero cholesterol which helps lower LDL, the bad cholesterol and triglyceride making oneâ€™s heart healthy. Many think that cutting out fat intake is good for our body which is untrue. Our body needs nutrients from all food groups including fats; all you need to do is get it from good sources like kajuinstead of unhealthy ones.
#2 Makes your body stronger
They are rich in magnesium which is required for strong bones, proper muscle and nerve functioning. Our bodies need a daily intake of about 300 â€“ 750 mg of magnesium as it helps regulate the amount of calcium absorbed by our bones.
#3 Controls your blood pressure levels
These nuts are low in sodium and high in potassium and thus keep blood pressure under check. When there is excess sodium, the body retains more water which causes the volume of blood to increase in turn increasing the blood pressure.
#4 Reduces your risk of cancer
Cashew nuts also contain antioxidants like selenium and vitamin E which prevent free radical oxidation, reduce the risk of cancer and boost immunity. Since they are rich in zinc, they help fight infections.
#5 Plays a key role in numerous body functions
As cashew nuts are packed with high copper content, they play an important role in enzyme activity, hormone production and brain function. Apart from this, they also help in the production of red blood cells and thus, prevent anaemia.
Given the fact that cashew nuts are high in calories, numerous questions might be going in your head at this point of time. Our expert sheds light on some common questions you might have regarding consumption of tasty cashew nuts or kajus.
How often should one eat them?
Though these are absolutely delicious and difficult to stop eating after just a few, remember control is the key to good health. Eating between 5-10 pieces is enough for a day. You can eat them in two batches as a healthy snack to replace your junk food cravings. But keep in mind, excess consumption can lead to weight gain so eat within limits.
Should they be avoided in any particular season?
Earlier, there was a belief that nuts generate body heat and should be avoided in summer months. While anything is excess is bad for the body, a few nuts have more health benefits than health issues. Stick to a handful and you can enjoy them in every season.
Should people will certain conditions avoid them all together?
Everyone can eat cashew nuts except people who are allergic to nuts or get a migraine headache due to them.
There are different varieties of cashew nuts like salted or roasted ones. Are they good or should one stick to the plain ones?
You get a wide variety of cashew nuts coated with different masalas, salted, herbed, honeyed, etc. It all depends on your taste buds, choices and health goals. If you suffer from hypertension, avoid salted ones. If you are on a weight loss goal, avoid honey-coated ones. Take your pick wisely or simply stick to the plain variety.
Do they have any ill-effects on health?
There are no ill-effects of cashew nuts as such but one must not forget that they are rich in calories and so not too many should be eaten at a time. In some cases, they can cause an allergic reaction which may show different symptoms for different people including vomiting and diarrhoea, swelling, skin rashes, difficulty in breathing, etc. If you experience any of these after eating them, it is best to discontinue and see a doctor.