Nuts are remarkably healthy, as they’re loaded with nutrients and antioxidants.
In fact, they have been linked to a wide variety of health benefits, including protecting against diabetes and heart disease.
Nevertheless, they’re also high in calories and fat. In this article, we look at the sign to discover whether nuts are weight loss friendly or fattening.
1. Nuts Are High in Fat And Calories:
Are nuts are high in calories? The answer is yes. This is because a great portion of them contains fat, which is a concentrated source of energy. One gram of fat contains 9 calories, while one gram of carbs or protein contains just 4 calories.
Nuts mostly contain unsaturated fat. This type of fat is linked with protection against different diseases, such as heart disease.
Below are some of the calories and fat content in nuts one-ounce (28 gram) serving.
- Walnuts: 183 calories and 18 grams of fat
- Brazil nuts: 184 calories and 19 grams of fat
- Almonds: 161 calories and 14 grams of fat
- Pistachios: 156 calories and 12 grams of fat
- Cashews: 155 calories and 12 grams fat
Been high in fat and calories, it is assumed that adding nuts to their diet will lead to weight gain.
However, as discussed below, scientific studies do not support this.
2. Frequent Eating Of Nuts Is Not associated with Weight Gain:
Studies have that regularly eating nuts is not associated with weight gain and may even prevent it.
For example, one study looked at the diets of 8,865 men and women over 28 months.
It observed that those who ate two or more servings of nuts a week had a 31% more moderate risk of weight gain, compared to those who never or infrequently ate them.
Also, a study of 36 studies observed that regularly eating nuts was not linked to an increase in weight, body mass index (BMI) or waist size.
In controlled studies where participants had to stick to a strict diet, the addition of many various types of nuts did not produce changes in body weight.
More significantly, in studies where nuts were added to the diets of people who were able to eat as they liked, nut eating did not lead to weight gain.
That said, a small number of studies have reported that eating nuts were associated with an increase in body weight.
Nevertheless, any increase in weight was very small, much lower than expected, and served to be unimportant in the long term.
3.Nuts May Even Boost Weight Loss
Several studies have observed that more regular nut eating is linked with lower body weight.
It’s not obvious why this is, but it may be partially due to the healthier lifestyle options of those who eat nuts.
Nevertheless, human studies show that combining nuts as part of a weight-loss diet does not prevent weight loss. In particular, it often promotes weight loss.
For instance, one research of 65 overweight or obese people associated with a low-calorie diet enriched with almonds to a low-calorie diet supplemented with complex carbs.
They ate equal quantities of calories, cholesterol, protein, and saturated fat.
At the end of the 24-week season, those on the almond diet had a 62% greater reduction in weight and BMI, a 50% greater reduction in waist circumference, and a 56% greater reduction in fat mass.
4. Nuts May Help Reduce Appetite and Improve Feelings of Fullness:
Combining nuts to the diet has been connected to reduce and feeling full for longer.
For instance, snacking on almonds has been given to reduce appetite and cravings.
In one research, over 200 people were told to eat a portion of peanuts as a snack.
The result was that they naturally ate several calories later in the day. This impact was greater when peanuts were eaten as a snack, rather than at the main meal.
It’s estimated that their appetite-suppressing impacts are likely due to the enhanced production of the hormones peptide YY (PYY) and/or cholecystokinin (CCK), both of which help improve appetite.
The assumption is that high protein and high unsaturated fat content may be responsible for this effect.
Studies recommend that 54–104% of the additional calories that come from combining nuts to the diet are removed out by a natural decrease in the intake of other foods.
In other concepts, eating nuts as a snack boosts feelings of fullness, which results in consuming less of other foods.
5. Nuts Help in Digestion:
The high fiber content of nuts means that unless they are scraped up or chewed thoroughly, a good balance will pass through the gut undigested.
Alternatively, it’s released into the bowels. In conclusion, some of the nutrients, such as fat, won’t be absorbed and are rather lost in feces.
Studies have observed that after eating nuts, the quantity of fat lost through excretions increased by 5% to over 20%.
This implies that a good part of the fat in nuts is not absorbed by your body.
For instance, one research observed that the amount of fat excreted in the excretions was greater for whole peanuts (17.8%) than peanut butter (7%) or peanut oil (4.5%).
Hence, the absorption of fat and calories from nuts is expected to be the least when you eat them whole.
6.Nuts May Boost Burning of Fat and Calorie:
Some proof recommends that nut eating may boost the number of calories burned at rest.
One examination observed that participants burned 28% more calories after a meal including walnuts than a meal containing fat from a dairy source.
A different study discovered supplementing with peanut oil for eight weeks resulted in a 5% boost in calorie burning. Nevertheless, this was only seen in overweight people.
In extension, some researches show that between overweight and obese people, having nuts can boost fat burning.
Nevertheless, results are confusing, and better-quality researches are required to confirm the connection between nuts and increased calorie burning.