5 The Best Dry Fruits for health
Dried fruits are enriched with nutrients and are very beneficial for health in many ways. Adding a small quantity of them to porridge, yogurt and smoothies can make your breakfast more delicious and healthy.
Due to their small size, they can be carried to work in a small jar or even pocket. Eating them in the morning will boost energy and you’ll not feel hungry for a long time.
A small nut contains many nutrients such as fiber, potassium, vitamins, protein, fats, etc. If eaten in moderation, they have numerous positive effects on our health and can cure many contagious diseases as well.
Dried fruits contain more vitamins, fiber, iron, minerals, as compared to fresh fruits. They’re also remarkably higher in calories per 100 grams.
They should be added to our diet to increase food nutrition and to boost immunity to fight many diseases.
Although, there is a long list of the best dry fruits for health including dates, almonds, apricot, raisins, cashew, walnut, figs, hazelnuts, etc. Some of them are being discussed here.
List of 5 Best Dry Fruits for health
The date is an extremely delicious fruit that grows on a palm tree in small clusters. It is found in many tropical areas. This tasty fruit is very helpful in making you feel full for a long time by suppressing your appetite.
Its color varies from reddish black to dark brown, also there are different varieties of this nutritional fruit. The variety can be indicated by their appearance, the skin of dried date is wrinkled, while smooth skin indicates freshness and softness.
Aside from the taste, there are multiple health benefits of dates. Of all the dried fruits, dates are highest in antioxidants and help reduce oxidative damage in our bodies.
Besides that, a 4 ounce serving of dates contains nutrients like dietary fibers (0.6 g), iron (4.5% of RDI), sugar (5g), calories (280), and provides a large number of vitamins, minerals.
The fiber in dates can be helpful in controlling blood sugar as it slows down digestion and can help prevent high blood sugar levels from rising after a meal.
Because of their nutritional value, almonds are very popular all over the world. They are rich in antioxidants, fiber, vitamins, and minerals, thus offering a lot of health benefits. ¼ cup serving of almonds contains 3.5 grams of fiber, 5.5 grams of protein, vitamin E 35 % (RDI), and 14 grams of fats (80% of which is monounsaturated).
Almonds are an excellent source of antioxidants (flavonoids, phenolic acids). These antioxidants fight against oxidative stress, which can damage molecules in cells and cause inflammation, aging, and other diseases.
The powerful antioxidants in almonds are mostly found in the brown layer of their skin. So, peeled almonds aren’t considered to be the best choice from a health point of view.
But another antioxidant ‘tannins’, which is also found in the skin of the nuts, is enough to destroy the nutritional value of the fruit. Research has shown that it’s better to eat almonds after soaking them.
This chemical doesn’t allow the nutrients to be fully absorbed. Besides that, it’s hard to digest the skin of nuts especially for those who are suffering from digestive disorders. That’s why people prefer to eat almonds after removing the skin.
Cashews were first found in South America (Brazil). Europeans discovered them in the late middle ages. Later, they were introduced by the colonizers in India and Africa. Today, the major cashew producers and exporters are Vietnam, the Philippines, Africa, and India.
This nut contains 45% fats, of which more than half is monounsaturated and the rest is polyunsaturated and saturated. A 1-ounce serving of cashew offers 155 calories, copper (70%) of the daily value, 5 grams proteins, 20 % of manganese which is really very beneficial for maintaining the bone’s health and relaxing muscles. They are enriched with vitamin C, B6, E, and K as well.
One study has found that people who eat nuts low in saturated fats, 4-5 times a week have a prominently lower risk of heart disease as compared to those who never or rarely eat nuts.
Multiple types of research also have shown that cashews or any other nuts help in maintaining a healthy weight. Nuts if used in moderation may be helpful in weight loss as well as to boost metabolism.
Walnut, a single-seeded nut is known as the powerhouse of nutrients for improved health. For the past several years, scientists gather every year for a conference to discuss modern research on walnut health.
Walnut is considered a healthy food for its high nutritional value. It contains vitamins, 185 calories, 4.5 grams of protein, monounsaturated and saturated fats, copper, 7 grams of fiber as well as vital omega 3 fatty acids.
Omega 3 fat is called alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) which is great to cure heart problems and to lower cholesterol levels. Besides that, it boosts liveliness in our body by helping enzymes turn nutrients into energy.
Although, our body can’t produce enough ALA itself so we need to carry it into the body through diet. 1-2 walnuts per day is a good option to meet this requirement.
But it’s not advisable to consume walnuts in excess amounts as their high intake can lead to weight gain due to their high-calorie content. Even if you’re allergic to tree nuts, you should avoid eating them.
Besides that, excessive intake of this nut has also been associated with diarrhea, as it is high in fiber and oil.
Along with a sweet taste, this oval-shaped nut has many health benefits. Pistachio belongs to the cashew family. The pistachio trees grow up to 30 feet tall and they take a long time to grow seeds.
Pistachios can be bought shelled or unshelled, roasted or salted as well as can be sprinkled over salads and desserts. This nut is rich in various nutrients and doesn’t cause weight gain due to low-calorie intake.
1 ounce serving of pistachio contains 5.5 grams of protein, 7.8 grams of carbs, 3 grams of fiber, 160 calories, 12.80 grams of fats (most of which polyunsaturated and monounsaturated), and a good amount of other nutrients like potassium, copper, manganese, phosphorus, etc. This nut can satisfy your cravings by keeping you full for a long time.
Pistachio is one of those nuts and seeds which have more antioxidants which is necessary to prevent cell damage. Pistachios are second only to almonds in protein content.
They have a high level of essential amino acids (building blocks of protein) that our body can’t make itself, so they’re getting into the body through diet.
So, due to their high content of antioxidants and nutrients, the best dry fruits for health are very beneficial for health. If included in our diet in appropriate quantities, their consumption can reduce the risk of many diseases such as heart problems, cancer, diabetes, etc.
But it should be kept in mind that excess of everything is bad. Similarly, eating them in excess quantities can cause problems like weight gain due to their high sugar and calorie content.
For example, dry figs, cashew, almonds, pecan are higher in calories than others. So they must be eaten in small quantities daily.
In addition, some dry fruits are coated with more sugar before they’re dried to make them more palatable. Dried fruits with added sugar are also called ‘’candied’’ fruits.
They can have some harmful effects on health. Therefore, it’s necessary to go through the ingredients listed on the package to avoid the candied dried fruits.