Almonds (Prunus dulcis) commonly referred to as tree-nuts are seeds and are native to Central Asia.
Almonds are widely grown all around the globe where America contributes to its highest production. They have been used for ages for their health benefits.
Just a handful of almonds a day fulfill your 1/8th protein needs of a day. But a very less proportion of people know that peeled almonds provide more health benefits than almonds with the skin.
In this post, you’ll learn about the health benefits of eating peeled almonds.
Let’s dive in.
Nutritional profile of almonds
One serving of Almonds (1 ounce = 23 almonds) provides you with 165 calories, 6 grams of protein, 14 grams of fat, 6 grams of carbohydrate, and 3 grams of fiber.
This small packet provides you a boost of nutrients and has an impressive nutrition profile providing:
- Vitamin E
- monounsaturated fats (MUFAs)
- fiber and biotin
- mineral-like magnesium
- calcium, phosphorus, and
- bioactive compounds including flavonoids, phytic acid, plant sterols, and phenolic acids.
What are the health benefits of peeled almonds?
1. Lowers cholesterol
Although high in fats, they do not raise our bad cholesterol as they are rich in unsaturated fats i.e. MUFAs and PUFAs.
A study has suggested that it reduces the risk of heart diseases by lowering the LDL and cholesterol levels in our body and exhibits anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.
2. Helps manage weight
Despite being calorie-dense, they help in weight loss thus lowering the risk of obesity.
In one study of over 200 participants, researchers had two groups. One group consumed almonds while the other group didn’t.
The group the had almonds had a significant decrease in body fat mass compared to the control group.
There were significant intervention effects on changes in body fat mass, body fat percentages, and visceral fat levels. They are a healthy snack to binge on too for those who snack a lot.
3. Improves digestion
Almonds are a good source of fiber. Consuming merely a handful of almonds or a glass of almond milk helps in the gut motility and relieves constipation.
However, soaked and peeled almonds have a more beneficial effect on digestion.
Soaked almonds release enzymes that improve digestion. Almonds also support healthy gut bacteria in your body and optimize immunity.
4. Maintains sugar levels
Begin your day with a cereal bowl sprinkled with almonds or merely eating soaked peeled almonds.
Studies show that eating almonds with your cereal in the breakfast slows down the absorption of the carbohydrates.
5. Reduces uric acid
Research has found that almonds also affect your uric acid. In one randomized study, patients received 10g of almonds daily. Patients significantly reduced serum levels of uric acid.
6. Promotes skin health
As almonds are rich in vitamin-E. They soften and nourish the skin. Applying almond oil reduces fine lines, acts as sun exposure and, reduces dark spots.
A study on postmenopausal women investigated the effects of almond consumption. Results showed almonds significantly reduced participants’ facial wrinkles after 16 weeks.
7. May reduce cancer risk
Almonds consist of phytic acid, polyphenols, α-tocopherol, and phytosterols which exhibit anti-inflammatory properties thus reducing the risk of cancer.
A study supports that the consumption of nuts reduces the risk of breast cancer 2-3 times and has a protective effect.
Should I always peel almonds before eating?
You can eat almonds with skins. But when you soak almonds in water overnight and remove its skin, there is maximum bioavailability of minerals and vitamins.
You will get maximum health benefits when eating almonds without skins.
The almond skin has tannins in them which might cause hindrance in the absorption of the other nutrients it carries. This may affect the bioavailability of nutrients.
The peeled almonds are more palatable and have a soft feel too than unpeeled ones.
And as we’ve discussed it has with numerous benefits on heart health, digestion, and weight loss.
How to peel almond skins
Soaking almonds is the simplest way to peel them. Here’show you can peel them:
- Dip the almonds in a bowl with enough water to cover them fully.
- Leave overnight or for 8-12 hours.
- Drain out and rinse the almonds.
- The outer skin will swell up you can then remove the skins for a smoother texture.
- Pat dry them with a clean paper towel.
The soaked and peeled nuts are eaten on an empty stomach for better absorption of nutrients.
How to use peeled almonds
Almonds can be purchased raw or roasted. They are available in flavors too like salted, caramelized, spicy, etc. Raw almonds can be stored for two years in a cool and dry place.
A plant-based milk substitute is an attraction for lactose-intolerant and cholesterol-free diet followers as it’s free of lactose and cholesterol, unlike animal-based milk.
Everyone likes nut-butter and those who cannot have peanut butter due to allergy can go for almond butter since it has the same consistency and its nutty flavors add life to your boring meals.
Peeled almonds can be finely grounded in form of flour and be used in making baking goods. It’s low in carbohydrate and gluten-free substitute for wheat flour. Place it in an air-tight container and refrigerate for 6-9 months.
Almond oil can be obtained by cold-pressing almonds and by extracting its oil. It is used for skin and hair conditions like dryness for ages. However, it can be consumed orally improving sugar levels and relieves constipation.