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Written by Mel on November 22, 2011 – -
- by Melissa Fine
Almond consumption dates back to ancient times, where this womb-shaped nut was considered an aphrodisiac, fertility-symbol and good-luck charm.
Today, raw almonds remain an ideal sweet snack packed with abundant nutritional properties and health benefits!
Some of the nutritional and health benefits of raw almonds include reducing stress, improving sleep, maintaining a healthy weight, and cardiovascular health. If you struggle with lifestyle and health issues, read on to see how almonds might be the raw-remedy for you.
We’ve also included an easy recipe for raw almond milk!
Due to being high in protein, fiber, monounsaturated fat and antioxidants like Vitamin E and selenium, almonds may improve cardiovascular outcomes.
In a 2002 study of 27 men and women with hyperlipidemia (excessive fat in the blood), eating 36.5-73g of almonds daily appeared to reduce LDL (Low Density Lipoprotein) cholesterol.* LDL cholesterol accumulates in the blood and can clog arteries, leading to a heart attack or stroke.
Incorporating almonds into your daily diet might help you get a lot more shut-eye.
Almonds are rich in ‘tryptophan’, an essential amino acid (a building block of protein) that the body can’t produce independently.
Tryptophan is the precursor for ‘serotonin’, a neurotransmitter involved in regulating emotions and sleep.
Commonly referred to as the ‘happy-hormone’, insufficient transmission of serotonin to the brain may cause anxiety, depression and poor sleep habits.
Rich in satiating-protein and monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, almonds can aid with weight-management and maintenance!
In a 2009 study of 13 healthy adults, those who chewed the almonds well still felt full 2 hours after eating the almonds, and so ate less throughout the day.**
Raw almonds are so versatile, you can even turn them into non-dairy milk!
1 cup almonds
3 cups water
1 pinch salt
vanilla, dates, carob or cacao optional — for flavoring
1. Soak 1 cup of raw almonds in the fridge overnight.
2. The next day, blend the almonds with 3 cups of water and a pinch of salt until the mixture reaches a smooth consistency.
3. Strain mixture into a large bowl (with either a regular strainer, cheesecloth, sprouting bag or nut-milk bag. Find out how to make your own nut-milk bag!).
4. Transfer strained mixture back into the blender and stir-in some extra flavours, like vanilla bean, dates or carob powder.
5. Blend again until frothy and creamy.
Drink straight-up, or add to cereal or a smoothie!
…So, eat (or drink!) some almonds to stress less, sleep more, maintain a healthy weight and improve your cardiovascular health.Enjoy!Sources: *Jenkins DJ, Kendall CW, Marchie A, Parker TL, Connelly PW, Qian W, Haight JS, Faulkner D, Vidgen E, Lapsley KG &Spiller GA 2002, ‘Dose Response of Almonds on Coronary Heart Disease Risk Factors: Blood Lipids, Oxidized Low-Density Lipoproteins, Lipoprotein(a), Homocysteine, and Pulmonary Nitric Oxide’’ Circulation, vol. 106, no.11, pp. 1327-32. **Cassady B A, Hollis H H, Fulford, A D, Considine, R V, & Mattes, R D 2009, ‘Mastication of almonds: effects of lipid bioaccessibility, appetite, and hormone response,’ American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 89, No. 3, pp. 794-800.
Almond milk is a great substitute for animal milk in nearly any recipe, and in fact it has been used since the Middle Ages in many parts of the world. Interestingly, i was just reading how an almond milk recipe was featured in a 14th century recipe book called “Viandier”, which is one of the oldest collections of recipes still preserved today.:) So people have been preparing it for centuries!
And compared to animal milks, almond milk contains very little carbohydrates, tons of Calcium and a lot of vitamin D, which makes Almond milk especially valuable during the winter when some of us may not be getting enough sun. It’s great for the skin too!