Are almonds good for you?

By Brooke Strickland 

Someone I used to work with used to call almonds “brain food.”  This got me thinking.  Almonds are some of the first nuts I reach for when I’m looking for a snack, but are they really that good for you?  It turns out, that almonds can be very good for you and are rich in certain nutrients, but like anything – only in the right amounts. 

Only one ounce of almonds has over 35% of the recommended daily allowance for manganese and vitamin E and over 20% for magnesium. They are also high in phosphorus, vitamin B2, and copper and also can serve as sources of potassium and calcium. It’s also been shown that almonds can help increase good cholesterol while decreasing the bad cholesterol.  And, they’re rich in fiber and can help raise the level of good bacteria in your gut. [1][2]

Looking for some ways to enjoy almonds?  Here are some delicious, healthy ideas for incorporating these healthy little guys into your eating routine.

-          Roasted almonds: A great snack!

-          Almond crusted fish:  Try using almonds as an outside crust for a healthy white fish like tilapia or cod.

-          Spinach salad with almonds:  Make a fresh spinach salad and toss with almonds and some fresh fruit like sliced apples or strawberries.

-          Make your own trail mix:  Create some yummy trail mixes with some raisins, dried cranberries, almonds, peanuts, and whatever else you like that’s healthy.

-          Make your own granola bars:  There are lots of recipes out there for homemade granola bars.  Try one with dried cranberries and almonds as the main ingredients.

-          Toppings:  Instead of putting granola on top of your yogurt in the morning, chop up some almonds and sprinkle it on your yogurt for a delicious addition. 

[1] “Almonds: Are they Good For You?” Dr. Clay.Com  Accessed March 15, 2012.

[2] “8 Nuts that are Crazy Good for You.”  Everyday Health.  Accessed March 15, 2012.

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