Add Nuts to Your Diet

An excellent source of protein, fibre and vitamins, nuts are superfoods that can give your heart a healthy boost

Mix in a variety of nuts – like almonds, pistachios and walnuts – into your diet if you’re trying to improve the health of your heart

Need to pump up your heart? Your healthy diet should include a variety of nuts

If an apple a day keeps the doctor away, the same might be said of nuts. While nuts are high in calories and fat, they’re also an excellent source of plant protein, as well as fibre, plant sterols and antioxidant vitamins such as vitamin E and selenium.

And even though nuts contain fat, it’s almost all heart-healthy monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fat and omega-3 essential fatty acids, which lower LDL (bad) cholesterol. Limit your intake of nuts to ¼ cup/60 mL a day.

Try substituting nuts for one serving of meat or egg protein. Sprinkle chopped nuts on yogurt, cereal or salad, add them to stir-fries, or use them instead of breadcrumbs on fresh fish. Substitute nut butter for deli meat on a sandwich, or add it to sauces or smoothies.

At work, nuts make for a healthy and satisfying mid-morning or afternoon snack. Try almonds (especially rich in calcium), Brazil nuts, hazelnuts, macadamia nuts, peanuts (the best source of protein), pecans, pistachios and walnuts (high in omega-3 fatty acids).

Originally published in Wellness Matters, Canada Wide Media’s quarterly newsletter on health and wellness.