Nuts and Dry Fruits – The best substitutes for common spicy snacks
Healthy Snacks – Nuts and Dry Fruits -How to eat dry fruits and nuts in a healthy manner ?
According to Ayurveda, one’s health depends upon the amount and quality of food eaten. One can simply be healthy by keeping unwholesome food at bay. But in fact, in each day’s diet we combine wholesome and unwholesome food, knowingly or unknowingly.This happens mostly because the habit of snacking. Today we have many mouth watering choices for a snack: fried, spicy, frozen, and sweet – to name a few. These foods are liked much due to the wonderful tastes they offer. And we forget the fact that they contain relatively high amount of calories and unhealthy fat.
Is there a substitute?
Nuts and dry fruits which offer more quality in less quantity are the best substitutes for common spicy snacks today. For example, an ounce of cashew nut has 5 grams of protein in it. It is cholesterol free, and has heart friendly fatty acids. Cashews help diabetics to reduce their triglyceride levels with its monounsaturated fats. Many varieties of nuts and dry fruits are available in markets today. Cashew nuts, dates, almonds, raisins, pistachio, apricot, walnuts and fig are the most popular items.
- Raisins can be used after soaking in water overnight.
- Dates can be taken directly or with water or milk.
- Cashew nuts can be taken with milk or directly. Around one ounce (6-10 numbers) of cashew nuts is enough for a day for a healthy one.
- Pistachios and almonds are also can be used directly or with milk.
- Peanuts are available at butter form which can be used with bread etc.
- Dry fruits and nuts can be used as salad toppings. They can be added in a variety of dishes like oatmeal,cereals, curries and cakes.
Even diabetics can have nuts and dry fruits in their menu, excluding some items like dates and raisins. The amount and timings should be chosen carefully according to the person’s condition. A diabetic should seek advice from a dietician/physician before adding these into daily menu.
Moderation is the key
Nuts and dry fruits are high calorie foods. Due to great taste, there may be a tendency to over eat them, which should be controlled. A handful a day is enough for a healthy one. You can eat them straight.For ensuring proper nutrition, mix more than any two of them in a day’s menu. And say ‘no’ to fried and salted nuts.
Dry Fruits and Nuts – At office!
It is so easy to carry some dry fruits or nuts to your office; and you can enjoy them even while travelling. At office, have a few cashew nuts or peanuts or dates at your teatime instead of any fried foods.
You can ensure limited consuming by eating them when you are not so hungry.
They should be stored in a tightly sealed container in a cool, dry place. It is better to buy them in moderate quantities. Limit the usage by considering your body conditions.
More quality from less quantity (a handful a day is enough)
Heart friendly – Mostly contain High density lipoproteins (HDL – known as good cholesterol)
Presence of fats that lower cholesterol (Polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats – omega 3 fatty acids)
Good source of carbohydrates, dietary fibre, Potassium and Iron
Good source of calcium, Vitamin A,Vitamin C, B-complex vitamins and magnesium
Dried fruits are very good source of vitamins and fibre. They are made from fresh fruit and are rich in calories.