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When it comes to healthy snacking, nuts steal the limelight. Packed with natural goodness, they should form a part of any health regime. If you’re a bodybuilder, in particular, these small but mighty powerhouses of nutrients can help to keep your body in tip-top shape.
Nuts stand out from the snacking crowd because they’re a good source of protein and healthy fats. These fats are useful for many body functions, including boosting the immune system and even assisting with weight loss.
The advantage of eating nuts is that you’ve got ample options to choose from, so there’s a nut to suit every taste. They’re cheap and readily available, and as well as making a great snack, they can be added to meals, such as stir-fries, crumbles and curries, for a boost in texture and flavour. Here are a few nuts worth trying.
Protein is key to a bodybuilder’s diet, so it’s useful to know that almonds are brimming with this nutrient. In fact, they have the highest amount of protein of any nut. Almonds are also rich in manganese and vitamin E, which can prevent oxidative damage – useful after strenuous workouts. The high calcium content in almonds may also protect your bones. Studies have shown that almonds may even lower cholesterol and increase fat loss. Snack on whole almonds, add ground almonds into smoothies, or sprinkle flakes over a salad.
The humble peanut is cheap and readily available but boasts a bounty of benefits that bodybuilders should latch onto. As well as being a top-notch source of muscle-building protein, peanuts contain healthy monosaturated fats that support testosterone levels. They’re also low in carbs, so just the job for anyone on a low-carb diet. Stick to unsalted peanuts for the most health benefits. Ideal for snacking on, they can also be added to Oriental stir-fries. If you buy peanut butter, choose natural varieties.
Walnuts are the best type of nut for adding essential fatty acids to your diet. These healthy fats promote good heart health, a strong immune system, healthy brain functioning, and may encourage weight loss. This superfood nut also boasts antioxidant properties that reduce inflammation in the body and may prevent diabetes. Studies also confirm that walnuts can slash bad cholesterol levels – and you only need a handful of these nuts to reap the many health benefits. Walnuts can be added to yoghurt, or if you make your own bread, add a handful for a tasty, nutty twist.
Delicious added to chicken meals or tasty on their own, cashews are low in fat and calories, but big on buttery flavour. They’re bursting with energy-boosting magnesium, and iron, which is needed to keep red blood cells healthy. Cashews are also high in protein, so will help to keep hunger pangs at bay in-between meals.
Damage to cells can be a problem if you overdo your workouts, but this is where Brazil nuts step in to help. They’re rich in the antioxidant selenium, which works to keep cells healthy. Selenium also assists with thyroid functioning, which impacts on metabolism, so if you want to keep your metabolism on an even keel, as little as two or three Brazil nuts may be all that you need. Even better, studies have shown that selenium can improve muscle strength, ensuring these nuts are a must-have for anyone who exercises.
Adding nuts to your diet can assist with your health and fitness plans. Why not go one step further and see how the wide range of high-quality and affordable products from Steroids & Muscle can also help with your body-toning goals?