4 ways to include almonds in your diet for weight loss
- Almonds being rich in fibre and protein could aid in shedding kilos apart from boosting heart health.
A powerhouse of nutrients and excellent for heart health, almonds can also serve as the perfect weight loss food for those aiming to shed kilos and adopt a healthy lifestyle. Almonds being rich in fibre and protein could aid in shedding kilos apart from boosting heart health, says Ritika Samaddar, the Regional Head-Dietetics, Max Healthcare – Delhi.
According to a study published in International Journal of Obesity, the almond diet contained 39% total fat including 25% from heart-healthy monounsaturated fats, while the non-almond diet contained 18% total fat, 5% from monounsaturated fats.
Snacking on almonds regularly not only helps in losing weight but also helps reduce belly fat and waist circumference, according to the study.
Samaddar over a telephonic conversation with HT Digital says that as far as weight loss is concerned, almonds help in two ways. “Any weight loss food should give you a lot of satiety that almonds can provide you. Also the food should be high on protein because they not only initiate weight loss but also increase metabolism. Almonds being a good source of protein and fibre work on both counts,” says the nutritionist.
Besides, almonds also reduce bad cholesterol in our body which is a huge health benefit.
In a study, researchers found that having a handful of almonds decreases LDL or bad cholesterol by 4.4%. According to Smaddar, 28-30 gm or 22-23 almonds must be consumed everyday to reap their benefits.
Ideal time for eating almonds
While you may be tempted to have some cookies or namkeen when you feel hungry in between the meals, substituting unhealthy snacks with almonds is a good idea. One can have a handful of them as a mid-morning and mid-afternoon snack to keep hunger pangs at bay while packing a nutritional punch.
Ways to add almonds to your diet
Samaddar also suggests ways to include almonds in the diet:
1. Have them raw: The most simple and effective way to have almonds is to eat them raw or roasted. As mentioned above around 22-23 almonds would provide you satiety and serve as the perfect snacking option. You can also soak them before eating as it can help you absorb more nutrients. However, Samaddar advises not to peel them as by doing that a lot of fibre content is lost.
2. Powder them and add to your porridge: Another way to ensure you have your daily dose of almonds is to powder them and keep it. You can add it to your porridge or any other dessert you like. Get creative and think of ways to add the healthy nuts to your meals.
3. Add them to your smoothie or shake: For fitness conscious people or young adolescent who exercise or go to the gym, they can have almond smoothie to pack a nutritional punch. Add one or two tbsp of almonds to your favourite fruit smoothie for getting those extra proteins, micronutrients and a lot of fibre.
4. Almond milk: For those who are lactose intolerant, having almond milk is a good option. It is super easy to make too. Soak almonds, blend them and enjoy the milk.
“To keep one’s heart healthy, it’s important to keep the weight under check. Abdominal fat is often linked to increased blood sugar levels, high blood pressure, and elevated levels of triglycerides, all known risk factors for CVD. By being more conscious about your family and your weight, you move one step closer to a healthier lifestyle, concludes Samaddar.