RODALE NEWS, EMMAUS, PA—If you already rely on almonds as an energy-boosting midafternoon snack, you owe it to yourself to try some almond recipes. It's definitely a good idea to look for more ways to enjoy almonds. They're not only packed with protein; almond recipes also provide fiber, magnesium, calcium, iron, and riboflavin. And almonds are one of the best sources of alpha-tocopherol vitamin E, the form best absorbed by our bodies. Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that helps prevent free-radical damage to cells. Low vitamin E levels have been linked to poor memory and to cognitive decline. A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that men who ingested the most vitamin E (from food sources, not supplements) were 67 percent less likely to develop Alzheimer's disease than those eating the least amount of the vitamin. Vitamin E helps cells communicate with each other, and without sufficient amounts of vitamin E, your body may have difficulty absorbing other nutrients. The E in almonds also helps defend against sun damage; in a study, participants who consumed about 20 almonds daily and were then exposed to UV light burned less than those who had none.
In addition, the plant sterols in almonds can reduce your risk of heart attack and stroke. Just one ounce of almonds has as many polyphenols as ½ cup of steamed broccoli and a cup of green tea, combined. And when South African researchers reviewed 23 studies to examine the effect of nut consumption on cholesterol levels, they found that adding 50 to 100 grams of nuts (like almonds) daily to a moderately high-fat diet could greatly reduce total and LDL cholesterol. Almonds also benefit diabetics by helping to lower blood sugar.
Keep reading for almond snacking suggestions, plus almond recipes for bars, salads, cake, and more.
Filed Under: RECIPES
Published on: January 18, 2010