Eating raw doesn’t have to be an “all or nothing” experience. Even if you don’t consider yourself a fully raw eater, incorporating some raw foods into your eating plan can give your health a boost without you having to sacrifice the cooked meals you enjoy. One raw food everyone should include in their diet is raw nuts. Of course, there are many types of nuts with specific health benefits, but all are sources of healthy fats and protein that you need in your diet.
So, why should you eat your nuts raw instead of roasted? Here are two ways raw nuts offer you a healthy advantage over their cooked counterparts:
1. Roasting Nuts Destroys Some of their Nutrients
This likely doesn’t surprise you if you know about how high temperatures degrade or even destroy nutrients in vegetables and fruits, and antioxidants are especially susceptible to destruction when they are subjected to high temperatures or even moderate heat.
What healthy nutrients in nuts are you getting less of by eating them roasted? Almonds are considered by many to be one of the healthiest types of nuts to eat, with walnuts following very closely behind, so we’ll look at the nutrients in those two nut varieties.
Almonds are packed with magnesium, vitamin E, and copper, to name just a few of the healthy nutrients in them. Eating just an ounce of almonds every day has been linked to reducing you risk of colon cancer, lowering your “bad” cholesterol levels, and keeping your heart healthy.
Walnuts contain hefty amounts of iron, vitamin B-6, and magnesium. They are also packed with fiber and many antioxidants that don’t exist in other foods. Walnuts are most known for protecting your brain health, but they also help ward off heart disease and help reduce your risk of developing many types of cancer. Most of the antioxidants are contained in the walnut skin, which is removed from them before toasting them. Find raw walnuts that contain the skin for the highest nutritional punch.
2. Raw Nuts Contain Fewer Calories Than Roasted Nuts
If keeping healthy nut nutrients intact is not enough of a reason for you to begin eating your nuts raw, then the fact that raw nuts contain fewer calories than roasted ones may. This benefit is especially powerful if you often have a difficult time keeping your weight in-check.
In fact, many foods contain fewer calories when eaten raw, and this is a fairly recent discovery. Have you ever wondered why many raw foodists are thin, even though they may eat thousands of calories every day? Your first instinct, if you don’t eat a raw food diet, is to assume they are just very, very active or miscalculate their caloric intakes.
The truth is that modern ways of measuring calories rely on foods being heated to high temperatures until they burn, so the calorie contents of raw foods cannot be judged by the labels or even online calorie-tracking software.
Yes, this fact means that you have permission to eat more delicious nuts when they are raw than you can if they are roasted!