It can make you feel little nuts trying to get to the end of the cashew dispute about whether they are healthy. Similar to potatoes and pickles, there needs to be more understanding of cashews’ nutritional value. The founder of Foodtrainers, Lauren Slayton, MS, RD, and registered dietitian Isabel Smith, RD, CDN, agree that cashews are a nutrient-rich food with numerous health advantages. Let’s check about its benefits.
Cashew Nutrition Facts
- Calories: 157
- Sodium: 3 mg
- Fat: 12 g
- Protein: 9 g
- Potassium: 187 mg
- Carbohydrates: 9 g
Top 7 Benefits of Eating Cashews
- Provide the body with energy.
About seven grams of protein—a vital component that gives the body energy—are present in a half-cup of cashews. Hence, a handful of cashews can be an excellent choice if you’re searching for a quick snack to get you through an afternoon slump or help your body recover after exercise.
- Help you feel fuller for longer after eating.
In addition to protein, both nutritionists say that cashew nuts are a healthy source of unsaturated fats. Unsaturated fats and protein are both necessary for satiety. For example, if you eat a piece of toast in the morning, you’ll probably get hungry again soon. But if you spread cashew butter on it, these two essential nutrients will help you feel full for longer.
- Good for your heart.
Cashew nuts include unsaturated lipids that benefit heart health in addition to satiety. Smith’s research demonstrates the connection between an unsaturated fat-rich diet, reduced cholesterol, improved blood pressure, and inflammation. Slayton advises choosing unsalted cashew nuts because they have less sodium if you want to include them in your diet to support your heart.
- Supports mental health.
According to Slayton, consuming foods high in magnesium can help people who suffer from anxiety or depression. Cashews are a wonderful source of this mineral. A cashew snack won’t suddenly improve your mood, but compelling scientific evidence links what we eat to how we feel.
- Good for cognitive health.
Cashew nuts also help to maintain brain health. According to Slayton, they include selenium, a mineral linked to promoting memory and cognition. According to Smith, they also contain phenolic acids, which have additional benefits for the brain and may even lessen or prevent beta-amyloid plaques from forming in the brain.
Also, they include vitamin E, magnesium, copper, and zinc, among other vitamins and minerals that support brain function. Include it on your list of foods good for the brain, along with berries, eggs, and salmon.
- Help prevent high levels of chronic inflammation.
Many elements included in cashew nuts, such as their polyphenols (a form of antioxidant) and unsaturated fats, have been related to reducing chronic inflammation, which is advantageous for the body as a whole. Because persistent inflammation can cause various health issues, such as some malignancies, neurological deterioration, and chronic pain, consuming a diet high in anti-inflammatory foods, like cashews, is very advantageous.
- Supports digestive health.
According to Slayton, cashews include magnesium and fiber, two extremely beneficial digestive minerals. Magnesium has been linked with decreasing constipation, whereas fiber is crucial for giving stool volume and maintaining healthy digestion.
This is an exception if you are sensitive to FODMAPs, foods that are more difficult for the body to digest. For example, according to Smith, cashews are a high-FODMAP food. Thus, those following a low-FODMAP diet should either avoid them entirely or consume them in moderation.