exercise and eat healthy

Pantothenic Acid and Your Body

Cashews: Tasty Little Gems Carrying Essential Minerals of Life

 Cashews naturally come with many vitamins and minerals in them. They are a great on-the-go snack since they are packed to the brim with essential nutrients your body needs. One of these vital nutrients is called Pantothenic Acid, which is otherwise known as the Vitamin B-5. Pantothenic Acid can be found in the living cells of all life forms and is used for various chemical reactions throughout the body. As the Micronutrient Information Center of the Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State University says, “Pantothenic acid is a component of coenzyme A (CoA), an essential coenzyme in a variety of reactions that sustain life. CoA is required for chemical reactions that generate energy from food (fat, carbohydrates, and proteins). The synthesis of essential fats, cholesterol, and steroid hormones requires CoA…” (Higdon)

The key phrase in this quote is: an essential coenzyme in a variety of reactions that sustain life. So quite clearly, pantothenic acid is something everyone should be concerned about getting in their diet.

Pantothenic Acid and Your Body

 Pantothenic acid is a water soluble vitamin. This means your body is unable to store it, so in order for the body to get enough, it must ingest it. Since the body doesn’t store it, the vitamin should be eaten in foods daily. When the body gets more pantothenic acid than it can use, it merely releases the excess in the urine. This is why the vitamin needs to be eaten daily, to ensure your body is performing to its best possible ability with the proper vitamins it needs.

While pantothenic acid helps to turn food into energy, it also helps the body in many other ways. Pantothenic acid encourages red blood cell production, a healthy digestive tract, and healthy hair, skin, eyes, and liver. Having enough pantothenic acid in your diet is evident in how you look on the outside, but can also help with how you feel on the inside. When something is so important to the body, it makes sense to add it to your daily diet to make sure you’re getting everything your body needs.

A Good Source for Pantothenic Acid

 There are a variety of foods that have pantothenic acid in them, such as egg yolks, broccoli and sweet potatoes, to name a few. However, cashews are an excellent source for getting your daily intake of pantothenic acid, and cashews deliver additional vital nutrients your body needs at the same time. Not to mention, cashews are much more convenient than many of the other foods it’s found in. They don’t need to be cooked like eggs do, they don’t taste better when they are steamed like broccoli, and they don’t need to be baked in the oven like sweet potatoes. And unlike these other foods, cashews are very convenient and you can stash them in convenient places like your car or desk at work.

The Perfect Treat

Nuts have always been a part of a healthy diet, and cashews top the list. Our cashews don’t come in broken up pieces like many brands, but in the whole nut and they are large in size. Their taste is exceptional and they offer the right amount of pantothenic acid your body needs. Since they are so portable, it’s easy to keep them on hand wherever you might be for a quick snack or to add to many delicious dishes. Adding pantothenic acid to your daily diet ensures your body will be functioning at peak performance for all its daily functions, resulting in beautiful hair, nails, and skin. This in turn can give you that healthy glow that so many people are looking for. Not to mention, you’ll feel great!

References

Higdon, Jane. “Coenzyme A.” Linus Pauling Institute. Oregon State University, n.d. Web. 27 Mar 2014. <http://lpi.oregonstate.edu/infocenter/vitamins/pa/>.

Caju tasty cashews

Right Cashews to Choose

The Right Cashews to Choose

For the past few years, the big debate between conventionally grown foods and organically grown foods has been getting a lot of attention. Many people have jumped on the organic bandwagon, but plenty of people still believe conventionally grown foods are fine. Before anyone can make an informed decision about these foods, it’s important to know and understand the difference, and how they can each affect your health.

Conventionally Grown Foods

Conventional growing methods use several techniques when it comes to farming. They attempt to promote plant and tree growth by using man made chemical fertilizers. They also use synthetic sprays to get rid of pests or diseases the plants and trees have on them or in an attempt to keep them from starting to begin with. In order to minimize weeds, they use herbicides to manage them and keep them at bay.

When it comes to animals that produce meat products, they are given numerous types of drugs including: antibiotics, medications to prevent disease (even when there may be none present), and growth hormones. The animals are often housed in cramped conditions and not allowed out of their pens, which can become a breeding ground for diseases.

The problem with these methods is the wide array of chemicals they use can get into and stay in the food source. If you’re eating a cashew that was conventionally grown, you’re most likely eating chemicals and herbicides that were sprayed on or near it, and that just isn’t good for your body.

Organically Grown Foods

 Organic foods are grown much differently than conventionally grown foods. For instance, organic farmers don’t use chemical fertilizers, instead, they use either a type of compost or manure to feed the plants and trees. Instead of spraying synthetic insecticides they use methods such as mating disruption and traps to rid the growing area of pests. In an effort to keep weeds away, they use environmentally friendly compounds to kill them, they rotate crops, and use mulch. All of these techniques are equally as successful as the chemical pesticides and herbicides that conventional growers use.

Animals themselves are given organic feed and they are raised in a more humane way, with the ability to graze outside. Their housing is kept clean and they are fed a balanced diet in an effort to avoid disease.

Organically Grown Cashews

Like any other type of food, cashews can hold onto chemicals and pesticides they have been exposed to. This isn’t beneficial to your body and many people think eating non-organic foods cause humans to get diseases they wouldn’t otherwise get. According to the American Cancer Society, “Examples include growth hormones or antibiotics used in animal farming, small amounts of pesticides and herbicides in plant-based foods, and compounds such as bisphenol A (BPA) or phthalates that enter food from packaging. Some of these compounds are not known to directly cause cancer, but they may influence cancer risk in other ways – for example, by acting as hormone-like substances in the body.” (“Food additives, safety, and organic foods”) When substances replicate how our hormones act, it can cause great damage to the body and long term health  issues.

The Right Cashew

So when you’re searching for the perfect snack or recipe ingredient, it would be better for your health to choose organic, no matter the food choice. When it comes to cashews, it’s no different. If you’re concerned about your health and feeding your body the highest quality food available, organic is the way to go. Our tasty, organic cashews are the perfect food without any chemicals or pesticides to interrupt your system.

References

“Food Additives, safety, and organic foods.” American Cancer Society. American Cancer Society, 01 Jan 2012. Web. 26 Mar 2014. <.

 

Cashews good for your body

Cashews and Your Health

Cashews and Your Health

Nuts have been a part of our diets since the time of hunters and gatherers. What may have seemed like an easy, edible food item to find in many areas, also served another purpose: keeping people healthy. Cashews in particular are extremely dense in nutrition and can play an integral part of any diet. They are packed with a variety of vitamins and minerals, all which help the body to stay healthy and live long. In addition, they have a wonderful, unique taste.

The B Vitamin Bonus

B Vitamins have long been associated with mental health and overall mood. According to the Mayo Clinic, low levels of B Vitamins can be linked with depression. (Hall-Flavin, M.D.) While it’s true you can take a B Vitamin supplement, many doctors and scientist agree the most beneficial way of getting B Vitamins into the diet is with food. And what better way than with tasty, organic cashews? They contain B-1 (thiamine), B-5 (riboflavin), and B-6 (pyridoxine), and that’s just the start.

Mineral Density

In addition to a variety of B vitamins, cashews contain minerals such as: manganese, potassium, copper, iron, magnesium, and even zinc. Your body needs all of these minerals to function properly and carry out important tasks. So while you might have always thought of cashews as tasty little treats, they are almost like miniature vitamin and mineral pills, without the chalky taste. Eating them daily can give your body important nutrients it needs while giving it the taste it desires.

Lower Your Chance of Getting Chronic Diseases

 As we age, it’s only normal for our bodies to begin to break down. This can be due to many factors, including: poor diet, lack of exercise, lack of proper nutrients, exposure to toxins, and even genetics. So when you look at the many ways we can get sick, it only makes sense to fight off those diseases before we become susceptible to them. The sooner your body gets important vitamins and minerals, the easier it is to fight off illness and disease.

The New England Journal of Medicine recently wrote a report citing the benefits of eating nuts. They state, “Increased nut consumption has been associated with a reduced risk of major chronic diseases, including cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes mellitus.” (Bao) Type 2 diabetes mellitus is generally caused by poor diet and lack of exercise.

Studies have shown cashews can decrease bad cholesterol while also reducing the risk of heart disease. It’s easy to add cashews to any diet to help prevent issues later on in life.

Fast Food No More

 It’s no secret that our society is geared towards having things fast. We want them and we want them now. When it comes to food, however, we are doing ourselves an injustice with fast food. Is it convenient? Of course – but at what price?

If you’re trying to get away from the fast food cycle, all it takes is a little preparation, and there is no easier way than with cashews. If you’re looking for a quick snack to hold you over or you need a little pick me up, cashews can do the trick without any excess calories, sugar, or fat you find in most fast foods. They are also convenient to carry in your purse or car, for anytime you need a boost and don’t have time for a traditional meal.

The Right Nut

While all nuts are beneficial in some way, cashews are packed with what your body needs. Their wonderful taste, coupled with their amazing health benefits make them the perfect food choice. With them being so easy to take with you anywhere you go, it makes perfect sense to add them to your daily diet. A tasty, healthy, easy to carry treat, what more could you ask for?

References

Hall-Flavin, M.D., Daniel. “What’s the relationship between vitamin B-12 and Depression?.” Mayo Clinic. The Mayo Clinic, 06 Feb 2014. Web. 25 Mar 2014. <http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/depression/expert-answers/vitamin-b12-and-depression/faq-20058077>.

Bao, Ying. “Association of Nut Consumption with Total and Cause-Specific Mortality.” The New England Journal of Medicine. The New England Journal of Medicine, 21 Nov 2013. Web. 25 Mar 2014. <http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMoa1307352>.

bag of raw cashews

Cashews – The Potassium Link

Cashews – The Potassium Link

 In order for the body to function properly, it needs the mineral potassium. Potassium helps the nerves and muscles of the body communicate. It can also help with preventing negative effects on a body which has high levels of sodium, effecting blood pressure. According to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, “Potassium is a mineral that, among other things, helps your muscles contract, helps regulate fluids and mineral balance in and out of body cells and helps maintain normal blood pressure by blunting the effect of sodium. Potassium may also reduce your risk of recurrent kidney stones and possibly bone loss as we get older.” (It’s About Eating Right”)

When the body gets enough of the potassium it needs, it is able to perform necessary functions and it also reduces the risk of issues to the body later in life. So it’s pretty important to have a diet with plenty of potassium in it. The good news is, potassium is found in cashews, which are one of the best tasting nuts you can buy.

The Sodium and Potassium Link

 According to the Department of Health & Human Services, “Nearly all Americans eat too much salt (sodium). Most of the salt comes from eating processed foods (75%), or adding salt to food while cooking and using the salt shaker at meals (5% to 10%). On average, the more salt a person eats, the higher his or her blood pressure. Eating less salt is an important way to reduce the risk of high blood pressure, which may in turn reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, congestive heart failure, and kidney damage. To reduce the amount of sodium in your diet, eat less processed food and use less salt while cooking and at the table.” (“Sodium and Potassium”)

For people who eat too much sodium, high blood pressure is a problem. High blood pressure is known in the medical world as ‘hypertension’. But what can high blood pressure do to a body? According to The Mayo Clinic, high blood pressure can do damage to your arteries, heart, brain, kidneys, and eyes. It can also cause sexual dysfunction, bone loss, and cause trouble sleeping. (“High blood pressure dangers: Hypertensions effect’s on your body”)

Let’s take a look at just one of these organs – the brain. Hypertension causes problems which can be hard to counteract once they are in place. The brain needs a vast supply of blood for it to work properly. When hypertension is in place, it can cause a transient ischemic attack, also known as a TIA, which is like a mini stroke and often a clue that a true stroke is on the way. According to the Mayo Clinic, “A stroke occurs when part of your brain is deprived of oxygen and nutrients, causing brain cells to die. Uncontrolled high blood pressure can lead to stroke by damaging and weakening your brain’s blood vessels, causing them to narrow, rupture or leak. High blood pressure can also cause blood clots to form in the arteries leading to your brain, blocking blood flow and potentially causing a stroke.” (“High blood pressure dangers: Hypertensions effect’s on your body”)

Hypertension can also cause dementia which can cause problems with the thought process, reasoning, memory, and vision. It also leads to mild cognitive impairment. So when you look at just one of these issues, it’s important to understand the benefits of eating a healthy diet, with foods that have potassium in them, such as cashews.

Diet Changes – Easier than You Think

 Many people eat fast food as a convenience. Whether you’re working late at the office and need a quick bite to eat or are a mom on the go, taking kids to and from school and practice, many people stop for fast food. There are fast food restaurants on every corner, beaconing with their neon lights and dollar menus. But changing your diet and getting away from fast food doesn’t need to be hard.

One way to accomplish this would be to keep healthy snacks around for when those cravings hit, snacks such as nutrient rich cashews. In addition to potassium, they have copper, iron, zinc, magnesium, and manganese. Your body needs all of these and it’s easy to carry cashews around. They are portable and can be kept easily in your car for those moments when you’re tempted to eat what you know you shouldn’t. Giving your body healthy cashews is easy, and can help to keep it in top working condition for years to come.

References

 “It’s About Eating Right.” Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, n.d. Web. 31 Mar 2014. <http://www.eatright.org/Public/content.aspx?id=6801>.

 “Sodium and Potassium.” Health Facts. Department of Health & Human Services. Web. 31 Mar 2014. <http://www.csrees.usda.gov/nea/food/pdfs/hhs_facts_sodium.pdf>.

“High blood pressure dangers: Hypertension’s effects on your body.” Diseases and Conditions. The Mayo Clinic, 12 Feb 2014. Web. 31 Mar 2014. <http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/high-blood-pressure/in-depth/high-blood-pressure/art-20045868>.

Caju Bowl of Cashews

Five Reasons to Choose Organic Cashews

Five Reasons to Choose Organic Cashews

If you follow the developing trends in the food world, you will see that a lot of people are becoming more and more aware of the benefits of an organic, whole food, and diverse diet. This is something that many are thankful for because it is a sign that the days of “extremes” are coming to an end, with people willingly dropping all of the carbohydrates or fat from their diets in order to enjoy “healthy eating”.

This has been something going on for far too long, and cutting out any major nutrients and food groups is the polar opposite of healthy eating. Rather, a truly health diet is one that is striving towards a balance of healthy foods from all of the various “groupings” and categories.

Naturally, it can be tough to accomplish the balancing act when you are faced with information overload. This is part of the appeal of the developing trends in whole and organic foods. Why? If you make an effort to purchase foods that are not processed and which are not loaded with added (and often unhealthy and unnecessary) ingredients, it does make life a lot easier.

When you take things one step further, and look for organic foods, you know that they have been produced outside of the usual “factory” route. This means no chemicals, small batches harvested when ripe, and much higher quality.

This alone is a reason to choose an organic and whole food diet, but there are many other benefits and reasons for it. Let’s use organic nuts as a good illustration for a whole food and organic way of life.

Five Reasons Organic Cashews Provide Healthy Eating

We already understand that organic and whole foods tend to be of a much higher quality. If your goal is healthy eating, you do have to give a lot of attention to the quality of the foods you purchase and eat. This is due to many things, but nutrient content is one of the most significant. (Sumner)

If we use organic cashews as an illustration of this, we’ll hit on five very significant issues or facts:

  1. When you find a good source of organic cashews, it is likely that they will have been produced in small batches and handled with utmost care;
  2. Organic cashews tend to come from smaller farms – and that means that they are not blended with nuts of lesser quality during the packaging process;
  3. Smaller batches can be hand sorted and roasted under ideal conditions;
  4. The taste of organic nuts will be far superior to nuts grown and harvested under factory farming conditions; and
  5. All of these previous issues contribute to the overall taste and nutrient quality of the cashews, with organic nuts always providing the best in nutrient density and healthy fats.

Now, let’s look at each of these points one by one in order to really understand how organic foods (and cashews in particular) should be on everyone’s lists of healthy foods to eat.

Small Batches

Because we are looking at organic cashews, we will consider our very own Caju Company and our line of organic cashews. We buy strictly from small farms in Vietnam. This is because we want consistency in taste (any food grown in a specific region will usually have a regional “flavor), but it is also because we need to be sure of the quality of every crop.

By nurturing the small farms, our firm is ensuring that we will provide their customers with healthy foods that have received human attention every step of the way.

No Blends and Hand Sorted

When you purchase a can of non-organic cashews from a grocery store shelf, it is going to have nuts from several areas of the world. They are not often “graded” for color, size, shape, etc. Instead, they are roasted with oil and salt to mask whatever natural flavors they have (good or bad) and tossed together in a mixture of poor to mid grade cashews.

This is done for a few reasons, and none of them relate to the satisfaction of the consumer. For instance, the factory farms that produce the cans of cashews found on store shelves will usually opt for lesser quality nuts and yet charge premium pricing. They import the nuts from anywhere in the world with little regard for what this might do to the nutrient qualities of the nuts, and their goal is to sell heavier cans at top prices.

When you choose organic cashews, such as our Caju cashews, you will enjoy only the true flavor of the highest quality, hand selected, organic nuts. Roasted in small batches on wood fires, our nuts are only lightly salted with natural sea salt to give a slight contrast to the natural sweetness of Vietnamese-grown cashews.

There are five very good reasons to choose organic cashews, not only are they packed with nutrients and healthy fats, but they will be far better in taste and quality.

Works Cited

Sumner, Jean. Nuts and Seeds, Organic VS. Non-Organic. World Wellness Education. 2013.

Organic Cashews are a Good Source of Healthy Fat

 

Organic Cashews are a Good Source of Healthy Fat

Fat…though it has three letters, it is often ranked as one of the top “four letter words” of the dietary world. This is a bit unusual when you stop to consider that fat is a “macronutrient” or something that our body needs a large amount of in order to function properly.

You  may not realize it, but your body uses fat to form hormones, as a source of energy, as a way to store energy, for the fatty acids needed for cellular health, for brain function, and for the maintenance of skin and cells. So, you do need fat – and a lot of it. That is why it is a “macro” nutrient considered to be an essential part of healthy eating.

However, it all boils down to the kinds of fats we eat that determines whether or not fat is a good word or a bad one.

Understanding Fat

When we talk about dietary fat, we can mean saturated, monounsaturated, or polyunsaturated fats (let’s not even consider trans fats as they are just to be avoided outright). These are the types that appear in our food, and while some of them are horrible, some are an essential part of healthy eating.

Take organic nuts such as cashews as a prime example. As soon as you tell people you want to grab a handful of them as a snack, most will try to warn you off and suggest other, more “healthy foods”. They might do this because they believe cashews to have a lot of fat. However, your decision was the right one. This is because the fat in cashews is considered to be one of the healthiest.

In fact, dietary experts often call cashews the low fat nut because they have one of the overall lowest fat counts of many common snacking nuts – such as almonds and walnuts.

Here’s what we mean: Cashews “have a relatively high fat content…but it is considered ‘good fat’. This is due to the agreeable fat ratio in the nut…which scientists say is the ideal ratio for optimal health.” (Meyers)

We cannot overlook the fact that they are packed with the best fatty acids, meaning that they provide the body with the materials needed to cut the risks of heart disease. They also have zero cholesterol, further enhancing their disease fighting benefits.

So, in terms of healthy eating  and dietary fat – cashews are an all-around super food. Of course, you have to give a lot of attention to your source for cashews if you want them to remain on the list of optimally healthy foods.

The Source Matters

When you pick up that can of cashews on the grocery shelf, you should know a few major points about them:

  • It is unlikely that they came from one country and more likely to have come from three or four factory farms on different continents;
  • They probably have been coated in additional oil before roasting and then doused in salt to “enhance” flavor;
  • Roasting was probably done at a high heat that burned fossil fuels and which reduced the taste and nutrient qualities of the nuts; and
  • They were probably not “sized” and are sold instead by weight rather than quality.

What these points reveal is the simple fact that you may be reducing the overall nutritional value of your diet by opting to eat lower quality cashews. If you want them to be among the healthy foods to eat, you have to consider the source and how the nuts have been grown and handled by the distributor.

Why it Matters

We just learned that purchasing cashews from grocery store shelves may mean getting some of the lowest quality nuts available. They might be high in fat because of the way they were roasted, and their nutrient values may be decreased by the many things done since the nuts were harvested.

Additionally, when cashews are factory grown, they can be exposed to everything from pesticides to the introduction of GMO materials. This too can negatively impact their nutritional value and health benefits.

The answer to all of this is simple – find a source of organic cashews that purchases directly from non-factory farms. Find a source that does not alter the nuts by adding ingredients. A good choice is our Caju cashews. At our company we work directly with Vietnamese farmers who tend small farms and who maintain their crops to the utmost quality.

We then sort and roast the nuts in small batches. Relying on wood fired ovens, we use only a small amount of natural sea salt to enhance the sweet and delicious flavors of every batch.

When you are in need of a healthy source of dietary fats, turn to organic nuts. Look for companies offering products such as the cashews we provide here at Caju. We strive to preserve the flavor and the nutrients of the nuts and allow you to enjoy access to health foods to eat every day.

Works Cited

Meyers, Ruth. What are the health benefits of Cashews? Organic Cashew Nuts. 2013.

Healthy Foods for Total Fitness

Healthy Foods for Total Fitness

What is total fitness? It is not having those six-pack abs. It is not maintaining a specific percentage of body fat. No, total fitness is fitness that is from the “inside out”. It begins when you practice healthy eating throughout every day.

How Fitness is Created

Let’s just use a simple example: The famous model Claudia Schiffer admitted that for many years (at the height of her fame) she was a confirmed “junk food” eater. She smoked and rarely exercised, and yet if you saw a photograph of her during that time you would have difficulty finding any “flaws” in her appearance. Thus, it is not possible to say that total fitness is based on appearance alone.

Instead, it is having a body that is strong and energized, and this has to include healthy foods and smart daily choices. That means that for anyone to be as healthy and fit as possible, they have to learn the foundation of a healthy diet. This is one that provides enough energy throughout the day and yet does not encourage weight gain because of too many unused calories.

Energy and Food

If this is already confusing to you, just consider the word “energy”. You might hear the word “calories” all of the time, but you may not realize that calories are just a more complex way of talking about energy. You eat a certain number of calories every day and these are meant to supply you with the amount of energy your body needs to maintain its current weight, power you through your day, and yet not end up as stored energy (which we also call fat and muscle).

Some fitness experts speak of this as your BMR or basal metabolic rate. This is a number that indicates just how many calories you require every day to keep functioning, but without also doing any sort of exercise. This base measure of calories is what you should strive to eat every day. If you want to lose weight, you should eat this number of calories and try to do enough exercise to create a small deficit. Do this every day and your body starts to burn up fat for fuel and you have weight loss!

Of course, the energy you consume is important. Just as a car can use the least expensive fuel or it can burn the much higher quality fuel, so too does the body have a range of options. It is up to you to give the body the premium forms of energy needed in order to create complete fitness.

The Premium Fuel

So, what healthy foods are going to deliver the premium energy? We all know that a diet high in fresh fruits and vegetables, nuts and seeds, whole grains, and protein is going to be the best choice. However, not many of us understand how to get the very most out of the healthy foods we eat.

Let’s consider this for a bit in order to uncover the truly healthy foods for fitness. To begin, we understand that eating three large meals each day is no longer the smartest model. Instead, we need to eat five smaller meals or three small meals and two to three small snacks.

The healthy foods we eat should be chosen to give us what we need for our lifestyle. If you are someone who is very active, you need to be sure your body has enough energy from good sources of protein and carbohydrate. If you are a sedentary person, you still need that protein, but you need to ensure it is lean and full of nutrients.

This is not as easy as it sounds. All of the animal sources have a lot of fat, even when we pick things like lean meats. To dodge the problems we might turn to things like eggs or cheese, but here too we have to worry about cholesterol. How do we get high quality protein that gives us energy and packs nutrients? We turn to nuts and seeds.

The Benefits of Organic Nuts in a Fitness Plan

When you look at the nutritional data on things like nuts, you might be astonished. (Flynn) These are super foods that have long been blamed for being unhealthy choices. This is due entirely to the ways that nuts are processed and packaged.

Just compare the cashews from us here at the Caju Company as opposed to the many grocery store brands. Our Caju cashews are not doused in oil and salt, roasted in a coal oven where their enzymes are destroyed, and then packaged as a healthy snack. No, they are produced in small batches, sourced from organic farms in Vietnam, and then hand graded to guarantee that they are an ideal source of nutrition, protein, and energy.

There is a good way to begin healthy eating, and one of the first steps is to understand which foods to use and which sources to choose.

Works Cited

Flynn, Sarah Wassner. Nuts: The perfect health and fitness food. SheKnows.com. 2008.

Healthy Eating Includes Organic Nuts and Seeds

 

Healthy Eating Includes Organic Nuts and Seeds

The Internet makes floods of information about any possible topic available, and it can be remarkably challenging to get a straight answer about almost anything. Perhaps nothing is made more complex by all of the websites, articles, and blogs on the web, than the subject of healthy eating.

After all, there are websites about diets and exercise programs of all kinds. Some tell you to go “paleo” and eat only foods that hunters and gatherers would have eaten, some tell you to count calories and burn off certain amounts through exercise, and the list goes on and on.

There are also many sites and books dedicated to diets that eliminate all sources of carbohydrates or to radically cut down on the amount of protein you consume. Those promoting such diets tend to write well (or hire great writers) and make solid points backed up by science. They might explain how one clinical study proved that a certain diet was able to help people drop weight very fast or to build muscle quickly, etc.

The relevant issue with any and all of these websites, books, and dietary recommendations, is the that they proclaim to be healthy while often discouraging truly simple and healthy habits and patterns.

For example, extremes in your daily diet can hardly be seen as sustainable over the long term, or as a form of healthy eating. When entire food groups are eliminated, it means you are removing macronutrients, vitamins, or minerals from your diet – and that is a recipe for disaster.

Macro and Micro – Why They Matter

The human body is a wonderful system that requires very specific materials if it is to function properly.

You have to drink water; eat a blend of fruits, vegetables, nuts, grains, and protein; keep an eye on your fiber intake, and so much more. However, the key to it all is to be sure that you eat a healthy diet.

This is one that contains certain nutrients in enormous quantities (in “macro” quantities). These macronutrients are fat, protein, and carbohydrate, and the body cannot produce them on its own, and must get them from dietary sources. The body must also get a lot of other nutrients, but needs them only in small quantities (“micro” quantities). These are the many vitamins and minerals we gain through truly healthy eating. Our bodies can produce some of these, but not often enough to keep the required levels.

So, when we talk about truly healthy eating, it has to be something that includes the widest range of options and the healthiest sources for them. It is only by eating a diversity of foods, and paying proper attention to their nutritional properties that we’ll be as healthy as humanly possible.

Luckily, there are some reliable and easy ways to get macronutrients, vitamins, and minerals – plus other beneficial materials – and all from in a single group of foods.

The Benefits of Organic Nuts and Seeds

What is that group of foods? It is nuts and seeds. They are tiny little powerhouses packed with some of the best nutrients possible. Though a lot of people wrinkle their noses over nuts or seeds because they think of them as snack foods, “bird food”,  extras to be added to another dish, or even as  “fattening” foods,  they would all be making a mistake in judgment.

Yes, it is not healthy eating to fill your diet with snack foods, and certainly there are the “bad” fats to be worried about. However, none of these worries apply to organic nuts or seeds. They are not huge sources of saturated fats that are full of hazardous compounds such as cholesterol. Nor are they “empty” calories that cause you to gain weight without also gaining nutrients.

Instead, nuts and seeds are sources of dietary fats that qualify as healthy foods to eat. They are high in fiber and protein, full of vitamins and minerals, and considered some of the world’s “super foods”.

Cashews as an Example

Let’s use cashews as a fine example of everything we just pointed out above. A lot of people buy them purely to eat as a snack food, and this is why they may have a less than stellar reputation.

However, it is when people opt for oily and salted varieties that they get into trouble. When you read the food labels on these salty and fatty snacks, you see that they are not an ideal food source. However, when you find a good source for nuts, cashews will instantly begin to be a source of healthy eating. The key is to find them as close to their natural state as possible.

Family owned companies like ours, Caju Company, source our nuts from local Vietnamese farmers, providing buyers with a truly optimal taste. We then sort them by size and gently roast them with a small amount of natural sea salt. No oil, no high heat to destroy enzymes, and no harmful ingredients. Now, that’s healthy eating.

With 82% of their fat is unsaturated fatty acids (WHFoods), Cashews are heart healthy. They reduce triglycerides that can lead to heart disease, and they have zero cholesterol. They are full of enzymes, antioxidants, and protein – meaning they help fight a long list of common diseases and ailments. When you want a super food, cashews are a wise choice to add to the daily diet.

Works Cited

WHFoods. Cashews. WHFoods.com. 2014.