Almonds are very popular, especially in the States. It is one favorite nut amongst dieters, and recently it has even become more known for its health benefits and versatility. According to the USDA, there is an increased demand for almond nuts by over four hundred percent since the year 1980. There was a 2016 record that Americans ate eight hundred and sixteen grams of almonds on an average each. That is understandable because there have been extensive studies on its benefit to diabetics, weight management, and heart health. People often ask if the amount of calories in 15 almonds is good enough for their weight goals. Yes, almonds do contain calories and other impressive nutrients like plant-derived proteins, monounsaturated fats, vitamin E, magnesium, and fiber. These are what make them a candidate for good heart health.
A study published in 2017 discovered that Americans, particularly children who took almonds or other types of tree nuts in place of snack foods, consumed more nutrients. In this study, more than seventeen thousand adults and children exchanged their snacks for almonds. The researchers discovered that they ate less empty calories, sodium, carbohydrates, added sugars, saturated fats, and solid fats. Good fats and oil increased significantly, along with fiber, protein, and magnesium in smaller margins.
Nutritional Profile of Almonds
Technically, almonds do not classify as nuts. That edible part people usually call nuts is its seed. According to a university’s botany department, almonds are drupes and not nuts. They are also sometimes referred to as “stone fruits.” The tough rind round about the shell holding the seed characterizes a drupe. Apricots and peaches are close cousins of almonds and a common drupe example. Just like their relatives, almonds grow on flowering beautiful trees, and they thrive in dry warm climates.
Almonds have higher fiber, vitamin E, niacin, riboflavin, and calcium compared to other types of tree nut. Every ounce serving of almonds supplies:
- 4g of fiber
- 6gms of protein
- Magnesium (20% of daily value)
- Vitamin E (35% of daily value)
- Riboflavin (20% of daily value)
- Potassium (6% of daily value)
- Calcium (8% of daily value)
Almonds also have a low glycemic index.
What About The Calories in 15 Almonds?
Almonds contain a fair amount of fat, about 14gms per serving with a good percentage of it are monounsaturated, which is heart-healthy. A 2005 research stated almonds, when consumed whole, will give their highest nutritional boost. That is when eaten unblanched (brown skins intact) rather than when eaten blanched (skin removed). Twenty potent antioxidant flavonoids were identified in the skin.
The flavonoid, together with the high amount of vitamin E in its meat, gives a better nutritional profile, which may affect inflammation, cholesterol levels, and more. There are eighty calories in 15 almond nuts.
Probably its effect on heart health is one of the best-known health effects of almonds. Over two decades invested in different researches shows almonds can maintain heart health and also a healthy level of cholesterol.
Four research done on a larger scale linked nut consumption to lower heart disease risk. Together these studies showed a 37% average reduction in death risk connected with heart diseases for weekly nut servings.
There is growing evidence suggesting that regular replacement of snacks containing high refined carbohydrates with almond is a good dietary strategy for supporting heart health. A 1999 research review found that the consumption of nuts rather than its equivalent carbohydrate amount caused a 30% decrease in heart disease risk.
Replacing saturated fats like those in dairy and meat products with nuts caused a 45% reduced risk. It may also decrease the level of bad LDL cholesterol. A study conducted in 1994 examined men who had normal levels of cholesterol and discovered that those who had almonds for twenty-one days experienced a 10% decrease in LDL levels.
Another study examined eighty-two people who had high levels of LDL cholesterol. They had a diet of low cholesterol for six weeks, and this diet included almonds or muffins that had the same amount of calories. The participants switched their diet after six weeks. It was discovered that they had better HDL cholesterol distribution on their almond diet, and also the removal of cholesterol was more effective. But these were only observed in normal-weight participants.
There is 5% of recommended potassium daily value in one serving of almond, and it is good for heart health. A lot of studies had connected potassium with reduced blood pressure due to its vasodilation promotion abilities, which is blood vessel widening. A study cited that people who ate 4,069mg daily potassium had lowered cardiovascular disease risk by 37% and 49% for heart ischemic disease compared to daily 1,793 intakes.
Another nutrient important for heart health is magnesium. Some doctors report positive results gotten through giving patients with heart failure magnesium doses. There may be a connection between magnesium intake and reduced heart disease risk.
Almonds: Does It Contain Allergens?
Almonds do not contain gluten, and they are suitable for nongluten eaters or those with celiac diseases. Because most foods that are low in gluten or lack gluten have low-iron, fiber, protein, vitamin, and high sugar and saturated fats, it is necessary to fill up these lacking nutrients through other ways to get optimum nutrition in your meal.
The combination of fiber, protein, and good fats in almond makes it a healthier snack option that will help satisfy cravings. While several studies think to substitute daily snacks with almonds do not affect changing body weight, this strategy may be good for dieters.
A study published in 2003 suggested that when almonds are combined with a high monounsaturated low-calorie diet it may result in increased weight loss compared to low-calorie complex carbohydrate filled diet. The amount of calories in 15 almonds is good enough for most weight management plans.