Here are seven health benefits of cashews:
1. Cancer Prevention
Cashews are ripe with proanthocyanidins, a class of flavanols that actuallystarve tumors and stop cancer cells from dividing. Studies have also shownthat cashews can reduce your colon cancer risk. Their high copper contentalso endows the seed with the power to eliminate free radicals and they arealso good sources of phytochemicals and antioxidants that protect us fromheart disease and cancer.
2. Heart Health
Cashews have a lower fat content than most other nuts and most of it is in the
form of oleic acid, the same heart-healthy monounsaturated fat found in olive oil.
Studies show that oleic acid promotes good cardiovascular health by helping toreduce triglyceride levels, high levels of which are associated with an increasedrisk for heart disease. Cashews are wonderfully cholesterol free and their highantioxidant content helps lower risk of cardiovascular and coronary heart diseases. The magnesium in cashews helps lower blood pressure and helps prevent heart attacks.
3. Hair and Skin Health
Cashews are rich in the mineral copper. An essential component of many enzymes,copper plays its part in a broad array of processes. One copper-containing enzyme,tyrosinase, converts tyrosine to melanin, which is the pigment that gives hair and skin its color. Without the copper cashews are so abundant in, these enzymeswould not be able to do their jobs.
4. Bone Health
Cashews are particularly rich in magnesium. It's a well-known fact that calcium isnecessary for strong bones, but magnesium is as well. Most of the magnesiumin the human body is in ourbones. Some of it helps lend bones their physical structure,and the remainder is located on the surface of the bone where it is stored for the body to use as it needs. Copper found in cashews is vital for the function of enzymesinvolved in combining collagen and elastin, providing substance and flexibility in bones and joints.
5. Good for the Nerves
By preventing calcium from rushing into nerve cells and activating them, magnesiumkeeps our nerves relaxed and thereby our blood vessels and muscles too. Too littlemagnesium means too much calcium can gain entrance to the nerve cell, causing it to send too many messages, and leading to too much contraction.
Insufficient magnesium leads to higher blood pressure, muscle tension, migraineheadaches, soreness and fatigue. Not surprisingly, studies have demonstrated thatmagnesium helps diminish the frequency of migraine attacks, lowers blood pressure and helps prevent heart attacks.
6. Prevent Gallstones
Data collected on 80,718 women from the Nurses' Health Study demonstrates thatwomen who eat at least an ounce of nuts each week, such as cashews, have a25% lower risk of developing gallstones.
7. Weight Loss
People who eat nuts twice a week are much less likely to gain weight than those who rarely eat nuts. Cashew nuts are indeed relatively high in fat, but it is considered"good fat." This is attributable to the ideal fat ratio in the nut, 1:2:1 for saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated, respectively, which is recommended byscientists for tip-top health. Cashew nuts contain less fat than most other popular nuts, including peanuts, pecans, almonds and walnuts. They are dense in energy and high in dietary fiber, making them a very valuable snack for managing weight gain.