Ancient Romans believed that walnut originated from Persia where it was known as “The Royal Nut” as it was reserved for royalty. Nowadays it is cultivated in the United States of America, Europe, Turkey, Iran, India and China, etc. Since ancient times it was considered beneficial for health and was widely used in folk medicine.
From ancient times, walnut has been a symbol of intellectuality, as its kernels resemble a brain. Indeed, the fatty acids of walnuts further the cognitive thought process and work towards the health of the brain. In addition, walnuts are a rich source of energy and help to:
- manage weight diet;
- improve sleep;
- boost mood;
- strengthen hair and reduce hair loss;
- highlight the hair color;
- fight stress;
- support the brain;
- improve memory;
- delay skin ageing;
- improve bone health;
- increase life span [2, 4].
Eating as little as just 25 grams of walnuts per day provides about 90 % of RDI (recommended daily intake) of omega-3 fatty acids. It helps to normalize the blood pressure, mitigate the risk of coronary artery disease and stroke, offer protection from cancers, reduce cholesterol level, resist against hearing diseases and manage psychiatric disorders (depression, etc.). .
Walnuts contain many minerals:
Magnesium promotes the maintenance of nerve and muscle function, keeps a steady heart rhythm and supports a healthy immune system . Walnuts are an excellent source of not only minerals, but also vitamins, proteins and fiber. Certain acids and vitamins (B1, B2, B3, E) promote a glowing healthy skin, help to keep it elastic and supple, prevent dryness, wrinkles and fine lines . Also walnuts increase blood insulin levels and are good for patients with type II diabetes.
By virtue of benefits, walnut and walnut oil are widely applied in traditional medicines, aromatherapy and massage therapy. It has also been used in cooking and cosmetic industry.
Eating too many walnuts may lead to some side effects, like nausea, bloating, softening of the stools, cause allergic reactions, rashes and swelling and asthma attack in people who are sensitive to it. Excessive walnut consumption may lead to weight gain as walnut has high energy content [1, 5].
Overall, walnut is a rich source for antioxidants, minerals and vitamins, thanks to which it helps to improve blood circulation, lower the risks of heart diseases, stabilize the body hormones, boost brain power, lower cholesterol, aid natural sleep, improve skin and fight against aging processes.
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2. 13 Reasons to eat walnuts every day! http://www.thehealthsite.com/fitness/go-walnuts-13-health-benefits-of-this-awesome-nut/ (accessed May 09, 2015).
3. A walnut a day keeps you healthy and wise http://readanddigest.com/a-walnut-a-day-keeps-you-healthy-and-wise/ (accessed May 09, 2015).
4. Health benefits of walnuts. https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/seed-and-nut/health-benefits-of-walnuts.html (accessed May 09, 2015).
5. Walnut benefits. http://www.diethealthclub.com/health-food/health-benefits-of-walnuts.html (accessed May 09, 2015).
6. Walnuts nutrition facts. http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/walnuts.html (accessed May 09, 2015).
7. What vitamins & minerals do walnuts have? http://healthyeating.sfgate.com/vitamins-minerals-walnuts-have-4569.html (accessed May 09, 2015).