Native to Brazil's Amazon rainforest and packed with antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins, cashew is known for their versatility and the many health benefits it offers. Portuguese sailors discovered the cashew tree and brought it to India between 1560 and 1565, and it quickly spread to other regions. And today, it is cultivated commercially in Brazil, India, Vietnam, and many African countries.
The cashew tree produces edible pear-shaped fruits, also known as "cashew apples," and the cashew is attached to the bottom of this fruit, featuring a hard outer shell, which contains skin irritant toxin and should be removed. The processing period is labor intensive; the cashew should be treated under high flame to destroy the toxic shell until it becomes safe to handle with bare hands.
Cashew nuts are a great source of nutrients, proteins, and healthy fats, including monounsaturated and polyunsaturated varieties. Due to the nutritional value of cashews, they are highly sought after by non-vegetarians, vegetarians, and vegans alike.
The cashew is loved by people all over the globe due to the many cashew benefits and as they are a healthy addition to the diet when consumed in moderation. Cashews are high in calories and packed with soluble dietary fiber, vitamins, minerals, and numerous phytochemicals. They can be consumed as it is, as a topping, salted, or as butter, as they are extremely versatile.
Let's take a look at some of the Cashew Nut benefits:
1)May Aid In Cardiovascular Health
Cashew nuts are rich in monounsaturated fatty acids, such as oleic and palmitoleic, which are heart-friendly and aid in lowering LDL- Cholesterol while improving HDL cholesterol. They are also rich in potassium and antioxidant properties, which are beneficial for the heart.
2)May Help Prevent and Manage Diabetes
Cashews are packed with fibre and low in carbohydrates, which can prevent blood sugar spikes. This makes them a great snack for those with type 2 diabetes, as well as those with a family history of diabetes looking to prevent it.
Since it is rich in fibre, protein, good fats, and essential minerals like copper, magnesium, and calcium that provide the energy your body requires, keeping you full for a longer period. Saving a handful of cashew with you for a long day ahead will be handy.
4)May Be Beneficial for Hair & Skin
Cashews are loaded with antioxidants and zinc and contain iron, phosphorus, and minerals, among many other cashew nut nutrients, and are known to boost skin and hair health. Eating cashews can make the skin healthier and more glowing, whereas applying cashew oil on hair and scalp can promote good hair health.
5)May Improve Brain Health
Cashew nuts contain a healthy balanced amount of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids, and studies suggest that these fats can improve brain health and function, enhance memory, and reduce inflammation. For improved brain health and functioning, introduce cashew nuts to your diet.
6)May Help Boost Immune System
Cashew nuts contain zinc which is an immune-boosting compound and is vital for all cell processes. It also contains vitamins that can ultimately enhance your immunity. For those with poor immune systems, regular intake of cashew may provide the amount of zinc required to boost the immune system.
7)May Help Prevent Copper Deficiency
Cashew contains copper, which is a cofactor of various vital enzymes. It is one of the top food sources of copper, after seafood and beef, which makes it ideal for vegans who may be at risk of copper deficiency. Copper stands essential for bone and muscle health, and therefore, cashew is an incredible source of copper for those following a plant-based diet. Now that we have taken a close look at the health benefits of eating cashew nuts. Let's know about a few things to look into before introducing it to your diet, its versatility, and how to prepare it.
Cashew Nuts Important Note
• These nuts can cause allergic reactions in some people, so see a health physician immediately if you see some symptoms.
• Cashew nuts are high in calories, and therefore it is great to eat them in restraint to avoid health any sort of health risks.
• Roasted and salted cashews often contain high amounts of salt. It is advised to enjoy it without less oil or salt.
• It is also recommended to soak them overnight to ensure that your body can extract the minerals and vitamins.
The Versatility of Cashew Nuts
When it comes to manufacturing cashew nuts, all types of cashew nuts have the same general procedure; whether they're roasted, salted, or chopped and mixed with other nuts. And although there aren't different varieties of cashew nuts, there are different grades based on shape, color, and size, namely W180 cashew, W240 cashew, W210 cashew, and W450 cashew.
Tasty and Fun Way To Prepare Cashew Nuts
Many often enjoy cashew nuts as a snack on their own. There are various ways to incorporate them into your diet. Create a trail mix with cashew, dried fruit, and chocolate chips, and enjoy this delicious snack. Add it as a topping to your salad or yogurt. Create your homemade granola with cashew nuts, oats, maple syrup, and coconut.
Nutritional Value Of Cashew Nuts
Cashew nuts are a storehouse of essential nutrients and proteins and help our bodies get healthier. One serving of cashews (28.35 grams approx 18 cashews) contains:
• 157 calories
• 8.56 g of carbohydrate
• 0.9 g of fibre
• 5.17 g of protein
• 12.43g of total fat
• 1.68 g of sugar
In conclusion, cashew nuts truly stand as a nutritional marvel. Their wide-ranging health benefits, from enhancing digestion to diabetes management, contribute significantly to overall well-being.
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