We’re just crazy about nuts! Nuts are a source of healthy fats that are good for your heart. The monounsaturated fats (MUFAs) in nuts may help lower “bad” LDL cholesterol. And the polyunsaturated fat (PUFA) called omega-3 found in some nuts can help reduce inflammation in the body.
Nuts pack protein and are low in carbs. They’re also good sources of nutrients like vitamin E and zinc, which both boost immunity. Since nuts are high in calories, smaller portions are the way to go.
Here are eight types of nuts to add to your day. All servings are equal to 1 ounce of shelled nuts.
One portion = around 22 nuts
Try: Slivered almonds on top of roasted vegetables or fish; 1-2 tablespoons of almond butter with an apple; mixed with 1 heaping tablespoon of dried fruit for an easy trail mix.
One portion = around 6 nuts
Try: Chopped Brazil nuts on top of yogurt; whole nuts as an easy on-the-go snack; blended into pesto or another sauce.
One portion = around 18 nuts
Try: Soaked cashews combined in a blender with some water to make cashew cream—add a pinch of salt and use it like cream in savory dishes or use it to stuff hulled strawberries and enjoy as a dessert.
One portion = around 10-12 nuts
Try: Chopped macadamia nuts tossed into a salad along with some diced mango and pineapple for a tropical twist; macadamia nut flour as a breading for chicken or fish.
One portion = around 28 nuts
Try: Peanuts and a few raisins mixed into oatmeal for a peanut butter and jelly-inspired bowl; whisking peanut butter with warm water, soy sauce and orange juice for a dipping sauce that tastes delicious with chicken or cooked veggies.
One portion = around 19 halves
Try: Chopped pecan halves sprinkled on top of roasted squash; toasted pecan halves mixed into a kale salad with vinaigrette dressing, dried cherries or cranberries, and a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese.
One portion = around 49 kernels
Try: In-shell pistachios as a snack—taking each nut out of its shell slows down your eating, which can help you feel satisfied while sticking with a balanced portion.
One portion = around 14 halves
Try: Walnuts in a food processor with basil, garlic and olive oil for a delicious pesto; sprinkled on any baked good like muffins or cakes before they go into the oven to add some nutrition and crunch.