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Nutrition Articles  ›  Meals and Food

Feeling Nutty? Time for some Nuts!

The Tasty and Surprisingly Healthy Snack

-- By Laura Bofinger, Staff Writer
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Nuts for a Healthy Weight
People who eat nuts regularly do not typically gain weight. Some even lose weight! The nutrients and fat in nuts tend to make you feel fuller longer. When you feel full from a small snack of nuts between meals, you are less likely to have the urge to pig out at your next meal. Nuts seem to satisfy appetites without causing weight gain, unlike high carb, low fat snacks such as pretzels, which don’t seem to be very filling. The people who lose weight while eating daily controlled portions of nuts seem to naturally self adjust their calorie intake. This means they naturally eat fewer calories in later meals as a result of feeling satisfied from nuts.

Of course, moderation is everything. About 1 to 1-1/2 ounces of nuts are recommended per day to fall into the healthy category. This is approximately one handful. If you eat much beyond that, you’re eating a lot of calories (about 170 calories per handful of peanuts). Since it’s hard to practice restraint with the whole jar or bag nearby, get in the habit of taking your one handful in a special nut bowl, or use a recycled mint tin for a portable container.

Nut Add-ons
Don’t want to eat nuts alone as a snack? Use nuts as an ingredient for an easy way to control your nut portions if you don’t trust your snacking habits. There are many creative and delicious ways to add nuts to your meals. Here are a few suggestions:
  • Toss a handful of nuts into a salad, stir-fry, pasta, or rice dish.
  • Sprinkle chopped nuts on yogurt or cereal.
  • Add nuts into the batter of breads, muffins, or other baked goods.
  • Top softened cheeses such as brie or camembert with chopped pistachios or walnuts.
  • Sprinkle chopped pecans on potato soup or hazelnuts on split pea soup.
  • Toss pecans, walnuts, or pine nuts with bleu cheese or gorgonzola on spinach salad.
  • Add toasted almonds or pine nuts to steamed vegetables and pasta dishes.
  • Mix ground nuts into breading for fish or chicken.
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About The Author

Laura Bofinger Laura Bofinger
As a freelance writer, Laura uncovers some kind of inspiration every day when she writes about health and fitness.

Member Comments

  • I love them, but I do measure every time I eat them because it is easy to eat way more than a serving. - 3/24/2013 12:12:35 PM
  • Only having a measured amount of nuts per day stops the binging, and for me, I totally avoid salted, roasted nuts. I could easily wolf down a whole can. I stick to raw, unsalted nuts, and still measure my allotment , but I never gorge on raw nuts. Most roasted nuts are coated in some other kind of oil first before roasting, so beware of those kinds. Raw is healthiest. - 9/18/2012 9:24:36 AM
  • I love the 'mint tin' idea! I'm going to put some in my purse right now!

    I try to stick to walnuts though, just because those cashews and peanuts are way too delicious! - 6/16/2012 12:47:59 AM
  • MYLITTLEZYGI
    Nuts, oh nuts. I have been eating these little power houses for years. Throughout the day, I grab a few different ones. Walnuts, Cashews, Almonds, and Pistachios are all my favorite. I also combine them with jumbo black raisons for added benefit. Most breakbast days consist of a bowl of oatmeal on top of walnuts, and cinnamon. I don't eat meat, so these little creatures really satisfy me. Oh! not to forget, before I go to bed or while reading in bed, I grab a few Walnuts. There I've given my body protein to munch off of throughout the night. That way it leaves my hard earne muscles alone. - 9/23/2011 6:20:17 PM
  • Love pecans or walnuts on my oatmeal. They are so good on some salads with craisins added, too. Especially the salads with strawberries, raspberries and blueberries/ - 6/13/2011 10:53:44 PM
  • I eat mixed nuts daily and love them! I make my own trail mix so I can control the portions and I can cut out peanuts (which I hate!) and add whatever else works. Weigh your nut portions b/c everyone's idea of a handful is different. :) - 2/17/2011 10:20:12 AM
  • BAMAJAM
    I am pleased about the health benefits of nuts. I keep a small container in my desk drawer at work. It is a great suggestion to measure out the nuts in mint tins, or small baggies, to prevent overeating. Also, as others have stated, limit the salted kind. Having nuts handy at work, helps to tame my hunger pangs! :-) Thanks for the information. - 9/23/2010 11:32:48 AM
  • ACERENO
    I almost always have cashews available for an afternoon snack at work. They keep me from hitting the vending machine, satisfies salty cravings and staves off hunger until dinnertime. And of course they are delicious :) - 9/23/2010 11:06:43 AM
  • DENI_ZEN
    I measure out an ounce of Trader Joe's Spicy and Tangy Almonds every evening and slowly savor them. If I didn't measure them first, though, I could eat the whole package! They are a very satisfying snack. - 8/20/2010 10:51:27 AM
  • Nuts are an important part of my weight loss and health journey. I LOVE them, and I know I am doing something good for myself every time I eat them! My faves are cashews and pecans, and I almost always buy the raw organic unsalted kind - better taste AND better health! - 8/20/2010 10:22:33 AM
  • I am dibetic, I carry a snack bag with 2 dozen almonds inside with me when i am out. If I get the hungries which is rsre for me i can avert a HYPO reaction every time. Pat in Maine. - 7/31/2010 9:30:28 PM
  • Thanks for the comment on eating almonds, walnuts. I love almonds but, they're very expensive. I need to cut back on my carbs. I am way over. I will see if I can find some that are in my budget range. I will give the almonds a try in my diet to help myself from being hungry. - 6/8/2010 6:38:31 PM
  • I have almost 1/4 c walnuts with my cereal in the morning, and a 10-count serving of almonds one or two times a day, between meals. They have really helped control my overeating impulses! - 2/17/2010 9:31:13 PM
  • ....People who eat nuts regularly do not typically gain weight....

    I did not know that. I love walnuts and this article give a lot of good ideas on using them in foods. - 2/16/2010 10:21:46 AM
  • I've been eating 6 to 10 almonds or walnuts in the morning about thirty minutes before breakfast. I read that it will jump start your metabolisim. Seems to be working. - 1/31/2010 8:18:46 PM