Consumption of almonds can provide colossal benefits to humans. Not only a great skin, but also healthy digestive system and normal cholesterol levels are maintained by almonds. Almonds can be used in different forms. Almond oil is extremely popular and can be applied topically on skin and hair. Almonds can be used as flour, syrup or even lotions and fragrance etc. It provides prodigious nutrients and helps in maintaining the overall physical essentials of the body and health.
Almonds, popularly known as ‘Badam‘, are the healthiest nuts though it is more of a seed. They belong to the group of Prunus, a variety of trees and shrubs.The almond fruit is actually a drupe that consists of an outer hull and a hard shell which contains the white edible seed. They are available in both shelled and unshelled forms. The almond fruit measures 3.5–6 cm (1–2 in) long. The outer covering or exocarp, is a thick, leathery, grey-green called the hull. Inside the hull is a reticulated, hard, woody shell called the endocarp. Inside the shell is the edible seed, commonly called a nut. Generally, one seed is present, but occasionally two occur.
Almonds are healthy and contain nutrients such as fiber, protein, vitamin E, magnesium, potassium, and calcium; 23 almonds contain around 164 calories and 14.36g of fat. Besides being a rich source of fibre and protein, they are naturally low in sugar. Among the tree nuts, almonds rank highest in terms of protein, Vitamin E, riboflavin, niacin and calcium content. Raw almonds are dense in nutrients which play a pivotal role in weight management and satisfying hunger.
Almonds are a great source of vitamin E and other antioxidants that nourish the skin and scales down the signs of aging.The high concentration of catechin, epicatechin andflavonol antioxidants that fight skin cancer in almonds also add on to the health benefits of almonds.
Almonds have a low glycemic index (GI). Studies substantiate that almonds have the ability to check the after-meal escalation in blood sugar. Therefore, they assist in stabilizing blood sugar levels. In addition to managing blood sugar and preventing insulin resistance, almonds nutrition benefits include the ability to lower other common diabetes risks: unhealthy body weight, inflammation and high levels of oxidative stress.Almonds are rich in potassium and low in sodium which aid in blood pressure regulation. Potassium regulates blood pressure while low sodium content controls fluctuating blood pressure. The other vitamins and minerals in almonds help in preventing further inadequacies.
Almonds are a good resource of monounsaturated fats and polyunsaturated fats, which facilitate in lowering the LDL (bad) cholesterol. Eating almonds as part of our regular diet can help raise HDL cholesterol, or “good” cholesterol, levels. According to a research done by David Jenkins MD, people who consumed a handful of almonds every day lowered their bad cholesterol level by 4.4%. Thus, almonds also succours the maintenance of cholesterol levels in the body.
According to the FDA, eating 1.5 ounces a day of most nuts, like almonds, may reduce the risk of heart disease. Almonds are stupenduous in magnesium, which is critical in preventing heart attacks and hypertension. The mono-unsaturated fats, protein, and potassium contained in almonds are all instrumental in heart health. Vitamin E is an effective antioxidant and also reduces the risk of heart diseases.They help to reduce the presence and impact of C-reactive proteins (CRP) which causes artery-damaging inflammation. They are also a great source of folic acid. Therefore, they help to reduce the level of homocysteine, which causes fatty plaque buildup in arteries. Furthermore, the flavonoids in the skin of almonds combine with vitamin E to form a powerful shield against artery wall damage.
Almonds contain gamma-tocopherol, a type of Vitamin E that acts as a powerful antioxidant. It helps to fight the radical damage and oxidavtive stress that causes cancer.The fiber present in almonds helps in detoxifying the body. It enables food to move through the digestive system more efficiently. This process cleanses the digestive system. Almonds are also an excellent reserve of vitamin E, Phytochemicals, and flavonoids, which controls the progression of breast cancer cells.
Almonds contain riboflavin and L-carnitine, nutrients that boost brain activity and may also reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease. Almonds are capable to positively affecting the neurological activities and preventing cognitive decline. Studies have backed up that almonds in the diet, as well as almond oil, is nutritive to the overall health and functioning of the nervous system.The magnesium present in almond butter offers a list of benefits to the nervous system and muscle contraction.
Certain fatty acids are vital and beneficial for overall health.The body is unable to produce these and thus need to be obtained artificially from food. Almonds are rich in both linoleic and linolenic acids which help to reduce inflammation all round the body.
Almonds contain folic acid, a confirmed protection against birth defects. Folic acid plays a massive function in healthy cell growth and tissue configuration, and therefore, it is very important for the proliferated healthy growth of the foetus. Women who intake folic acid – by eating almonds – during their pregnancies are likely to give birth to babies without NTDs (Neural tube defects).
Almonds help in ameliorating the alkalinity of our systems. Being a great source of alkali materials, almonds upgrade the ability of our immune system to ward off diseases and health conditions. They have a high content of Vitamin E which is a powerful antioxidant. It eliminates the harmful free radicals from the body which promote chronic diseases and damage the body’s organ system. These free radicals can even lead to major diseases like heart disease and cancer. Deficiency of Vitamin E can adversely affect the body’s ability to fight infections.
This benefit of almonds can be attributed to the presence of phosphorus in almonds. This mineral is instrumental in improving the strength and durability of bones and teeth as well as preventing the onset of age-related conditions like osteoporosis.
Almonds are rich in manganese, riboflavin, and copper, all of which aid in manufacturing energy. Almonds also provide with prolific skin benefits like anti-aging, glowing skin, treatment of acne, dirk circles white and blackheads.It also fights dandruff and hairfall. It acts as an energy source with the vital nutrients.
Athough consumption of almonds have countless pros, there are some side effects of excessive cosmption like gastrointestinal problems,weight gain and increase in the toxic level of the body.
The almond is native to the Mediterranean climate region of the Middle East, eastward as far as the Yamuna River in India. It was spread by humans in ancient times along the shores of the Mediterranean into northern Africa and southern Europe, and more recently transported to other parts of the world, notably California, United States.
The wild form of domesticated almond grows in parts of the Levant. The cultivation of almonds include pollination and peril-resistant measures.