Superfood Saturday: The Benefits of Almonds

Article posted in: Diet & Nutrition
benefits of almonds

We all know the old rhyme that an apple a day keeps the doctor away, but new research is revealing that a handful of almonds also has a range of health benefits that may have you changing that rhyme. Almonds have proven to be a superfood that you absolutely want in your diet. The benefits of almonds are countless, and we’re here to let you know just how versatile and nutritious these little powerhouses really are.

Almonds are definitely a great addition to your healthy diet for a number of reasons. Some of the benefits of almonds are: they are an excellent source of vitamin E, copper and magnesium, and they also deliver high-quality protein. Almonds are also compromised of monounsaturated fat, the “heart healthy fat.”

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While almonds have long been known for their heart health benefits, there might also be a weight loss connection to eating almonds. A study published in the Journal of Nutrition found a link between daily almond consumption and weight loss—specifically belly fat. This is important since belly fat isn’t just an aesthetic concern. It’s known that carrying extra weight around the mid-section is a risk factor for heart disease. In the study, the participants who snacked on almonds each day lost more belly fat than participants who snacked on a muffin that had the same number of calories.

On the Nutrisystem Grocery Guide, almonds fall under PowerFuels which are the foods that offer high-quality proteins that contain essential amino acids and healthy fats. PowerFuels take longer for your body to digest, so they help you stay satisfied—which is important when it comes to weight loss. One serving of almonds on the Nutrisystem plan is two tablespoons (or a half ounce). You could also have one tablespoon of almond butter

Whole almonds definitely make a great snack, but there are many other ways to incorporate almonds into your diet. You can purchase slivered almonds to add to your yogurt or salads, almond oil to make your salad dressings, or even almond butter to use as a dipping sauce. Of course, almond milk (be sure to choose the unsweetened version to avoid overdoing it on the added sugar!) is also great for making your smoothies.

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If you’re looking for a few recipes to help you reap the many benefits of almonds, we’ve got you covered!

Here are three recipes that will get you your full-on almond fix:

1. Apples and Almond Butter >

mason jar almond

Dipping your apple slices in almond butter is a great option, since almond butter is an excellent source of protein and has less saturated fat than peanut butter. This simple mason jar recipe will help you create a great grab-and-go snack that combines these two delicious forces.

2. Green Almond Butter Smoothie Bowl >

benefits of almonds

Smoothie bowls are all the rage right now, and this easy-to-make Green Almond Butter Smoothie Bowl uses both almond butter and unsweetened almond milk to get in those great almond benefits. When combined with a frozen banana and a cup of spinach, it becomes a nutritional powerhouse. You can even top your bowl with blueberries or sliced almonds to add even more flavor and nutritional benefit.

3. Creamy Vanilla Almond Smoothie >

benefits of almonds

Unsweetened almond milk and almond butter give this yummy vanilla smoothie (also made with non-fat Greek Yogurt, a banana and vanilla extract) some nutty flavor. It’s a delicious smoothie with a LOT of nutritious items included—healthy fat from the almonds, protein from the Greek yogurt and potassium from the banana. It will help keep you satisfied when you need to satiate your hunger.