Discover the 7 benefits of Macadamia Nuts.
While almonds may be America’s most popular nut, no one can deny the delicious lure of macadamia nut health benefits; this is a good thing because just like almond nutrition, macadamia nutrition has a powerful effect.
Macadamia nuts are incredible nutrient-packed powerhouses that come from the macadamia tree.
They contain some important essential vitamins and minerals, including vitamin A, iron, B vitamins, manganese, and folate, as well as protein, healthy fats, and antioxidants.
These remarkable nutrients are what give these amazing nuts their bountiful benefits – what benefits? I’m glad you asked.
Macadamia nuts contain healthy fats that can help keep your arteries in good heart-healthy condition.
Because they are rich in monounsaturated fatty acids, they help lower cholesterol levels and reduce triglycerides, a type of body fat. When we reduce body fat, we can reduce the risk of coronary heart disease.
In a study conducted by the Pennsylvania State University Department of Nutritional Sciences, some subjects were randomly given macadamia nuts and compared to those who were fed a standard American diet.
Throughout the study, those who ate macadamia nuts saw reduced cholesterol levels and healthier heart markers overall, because macadamia nuts are a rich source of monounsaturated fatty acids, they help reduce the risks of risk factors of lipid/lipoprotein cardiovascular diseases.
Macadamia Nut Benefits Contains flavonoids that help prevent cell damage by protecting cells from environmental toxins; Once these phenomenal flavonoids are in the body, they turn into antioxidants, which is where the energy comes in; Antioxidants have this great job of finding free radicals in our bodies and destroying them, which is how we protect our bodies from disease.
Observations from the Antioxidant Research Laboratory study at the USDA Human Nutrition Research Center suggest that nut consumption is inversely related to the incidence of cardiovascular disease and cancer.
In addition to being nutrient-dense, the numerous phytonutrients contain positive health benefits.
Phenolic acids, flavonoids, and stilbenes help provide helpful antioxidants that can fight diseases like cancer; That’s why nuts, including macadamia, are some of the best cancer-fighting foods you can eat.
The good fat content in macadamia nuts can help curb your appetite, not only, but macadamias contain palmitoleic acid; palmitoleic acid can increase fat metabolism, which in turn reduces fat storage.
Macadamia nuts contain a good balance of nutrients and fats, helping you feel satisfied with just a few of them.
Additionally, macadamia nuts contain beneficial dietary fibers that can help you achieve satiety and contain complex carbohydrates such as lignans, hemicellulose, amylopectin, mucilage, gums, and insoluble cellulose that help with digestive issues and reduce pesky hunger pangs.
There is even evidence that nuts like macadamia nuts may have positive effects on the prevention of metabolic syndrome, although more research is needed to validate this belief.
Containing soluble and insoluble dietary fiber, macadamia nuts help you feel full while removing toxins from the body and aiding in good digestion.
As a food rich in copper, the macadamia nut helps with the efficient utilization of iron and supports the correct enzymatic reactions.
Macadamia nuts are abundant in phosphorus, manganese, and magnesium, all of which aid in the mineralization of bones and teeth and the transport and absorption of nutrients.
We know that calcium aids in the formation of teeth and bones, while manganese helps the body lay down new bone tissue when needed so that bones stay strong as we age.
Another important fact is that kidney disease affects the body’s ability to absorb calcium and manganese, which can lead to bone disease.
The manganese found in macadamia nuts can help keep your bones strong and fight kidney disease at the same time.
The copper, vitamin B1, magnesium, and manganese found in macadamia nuts help generate healthy neurotransmitters, which are the important chemicals that brain cells need to send signals to the brain.
Macadamia nuts are also high in oleic acid, which supports brain health, and contain palmitoleic acid, which helps protect nerve cells in the brain, thus contributing to healthy brain function.
Also, the macadamia contains omega-9, and as we know, omega-9 benefits the brain in many ways, for starters, it can help improve mood, an obvious function of the brain, plus it can help improve memory and avoid neurological diseases, for example, memory performance in normal naïve mice was evaluated in a study showing that erucic acid may be a therapeutic agent for diseases associated with cognitive deficits, such as Alzheimer’s disease.
This means that you can add improved memory and cognitive function to the list of omega-9 benefits and the benefits of macadamia nuts.
Omega -6 fatty acids may provide some nutritional benefits, but most people consume too much; when we have too many omega-6 fatty acids it can cause an increase in chronic inflammation in the body, that’s problematic because we know that inflammation is at the root of most diseases, like arthritis, cancer, heart disease, diabetes and more.
One study attempted to test the ability of a panel of Australian plants, including macadamia, with a history of treating rheumatoid arthritis, and concluded that it was beneficial.
The researchers noted that the “low toxicity of these extracts and their inhibitory bioactivity against Proteus spp indicate their potential to block the onset of rheumatoid arthritis.” That means macadamia nuts are a good addition to any arthritis diet treatment plan.
Most nuts have more omega-6 than omega-3 forms, but macadamia nuts are lower in omega-6; That doesn’t mean you should go overboard.
But by watching your intake of omega-6 fatty acids and having a few macadamia nuts each week, you can add protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals to your diet without adding too much inflammation, causing omega-6s to give you an idea of the differences, pecans contain 3.7 grams of omega-6 per 100 grams, almonds 3.4 grams and cashews 2.2 grams compared to macadamia which comes in at 0.36 grams.
While the macadamia nut may be higher in fat and contain more calories, it is lower in omega-6, as noted above, than other nuts; it also contains an impressive amount of nutrients, most notably an incredible 58 percent of the recommended daily value of manganese in a small serving.
One ounce of raw macadamia nuts contains approximately:
• 203 calories
• 4 grams of carbohydrates
• 2.2 grams of protein
• 21.4 grams of fat
• 2.4 grams of fiber
• 1.2 milligrams of manganese (58 percent DV)
• 0.3 milligrams of thiamin (23 percent DV)
• 0.2 milligrams of copper (11 percent DV)
• 36.7 milligrams of magnesium (9 percent DV)
• 1 milligram of iron (6 percent DV)
• 53.1 milligrams of phosphorus (5 percent DV)
• 0.1 milligrams of vitamin B6 (4 percent DV)
Origin and History of Macadamia Nuts
• Macadamias are contained with a hard seed coat that is encased in a green shell; then splits open when the nut ripens, while the macadamia is probably better known as hailing from Hawaii, did you know two seedlings were planted in the 19th century on the University of California Berkeley campus that still stand today? It is true! However, macadamia is native to Australia.
• The macadamia nut has a creamy white kernel made up of 65 percent to 75 percent oil and 6 percent to 8 percent sugar, when roasted it becomes more consistent in both color and texture. some seed coats are smooth, and some are rougher and pebbled; at the same time, some are more suitable for the home garden, while others are more suitable for commercial production.
• You may have heard of macadamia also called Mauna loa. Mauna Loa is the largest volcano on earth located in Hawaii, and Mauna Loa, now a brand name, became one of the first macadamia plantations to be developed in Hawaii.
• In addition to being called macadamia nuts, these nuts are also commonly known as the Australian walnut and the Queensland walnut; many species are poisonous; however, there are two edible species; one is the smooth-shelled macadamia or macadamia integrifolia, and the other is the hard-shelled macadamia or M. tetraphylla.
• Growing near streams and riverbanks in tropical rainforests, macadamia integrifolia is native to southeastern Queensland, while tetraphylla is native to southeastern Queensland and northeastern New South Wales. At the point where the two species meet, some types appear to be natural hybrids.
• This nut arrived in Hawaii around 1881, used primarily as an ornament and for reforestation. In 1948, the Hawaiian Agricultural Experiment Station named and introduced several promising selections, leading to the modern macadamia industry for which Hawaii is famous.
Hawaii brought the macadamia tree to California in the mid-20th century. Australia, South Africa, and Central America also depend on the value of macadamia. Macadamias prefer a temperate, frost-free climate with plenty of rain, similar to the way coffee beans grow best.
Be sure to store your macadamias in a cool place, like the refrigerator or cupboard. However, it is important to ensure that they do not contain moisture to maintain the benefits of macadamia nuts.
If you prefer them toasted, here’s what to do:
• Preheat your oven to 225-250 degrees F.
• Arrange the nut meats (the actual edible part of the nuts, not the shells) on a cookie sheet. It’s best to roast similar-sized pieces for consistency.
• Simply toast for about 10 minutes, keeping an eye on them as oven temperatures can fluctuate.
• Remove from oven as soon as they start to turn slightly brown.
• Allow them to cool down.
• Store in a tightly closed container.
• Macadamia nuts are certainly a delicious and healthy choice, but keep portions in mind. Keep an eye on the ingredients when you buy them, as many nuts have been covered in preservatives, oils, and tons of salt. They are also rich in phosphorous, which is important for anyone who may be dealing with kidney problems.
• Also, be aware of common nut allergies. If you have a nut allergy, you should avoid macadamias.
Final Thoughts on the Benefits of Macadamia Nuts
• Macadamia nuts contain some important essential vitamins and minerals, including vitamin A, iron, B vitamins, manganese, and folic acid, as well as protein, healthy fats, and antioxidants.
• These nuts are good for the heart, fight disease as antioxidant-rich foods, aid in weight loss, support gut health, strengthen bones, keep the brain and nervous system sharp, reduce chronic inflammation, and treat arthritis.
• Be sure to store your macadamias in a cool place, like the refrigerator or cupboard. However, it’s important to make sure they don’t contain any moisture, you can also grill your own.
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