Brazilian nuts: benefits and harms

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The history of the Brazilian nut
The history of the Brazilian nut dates back to the days of the Indians, who used it in traditional medicine and were highly valued for its nutritional properties and pleasant taste. In their culture, the Brazilian nut was called the “divine gift of heaven”, because it fell on its own from a great height, which was inaccessible to man.

Since 1633, Brazilian nuts began to be exported to Europe, where they aroused general interest and love for themselves. And not for nothing, because even then these nuts were known for their rich vitamin and mineral composition.

The Brazilian nut exudes mystery, a hot sunny mood, the desire to taste this unknown fruit. Indeed, this product is not at all similar to those nuts that we are used to eating. In truth, this is not a nut at all, but a grain or seeds of a tree with the fancy name of Bertoletiya.

The fruits of this tree are very similar to coconuts. However, instead of white flesh, there are long, oblong grains in a dense skin inside, which are Brazilian nuts. These nuts grow in Brazil, but they are also common in Guiana, Venezuela, Bolivia, and Peru.

The benefits of Brazilian nuts
Brazilian nuts are a surprisingly healthy product that contains very rare and important components.

  • Selenium – participates in all metabolic processes in the body, provides antioxidant protection, strengthens the immune system.
  • Magnesium has a positive effect on intestinal motility and proper bile secretion. We help to improve the functioning of the heart and blood vessels.
  • Copper – improves the renewal of bone tissue, helps the body to better absorb oxygen.
  • Phosphorus – affects the functioning of the brain, improves the condition of bone tissue.
  • Arginine is an amino acid that promotes blood clotting.
  • Vitamin B1 or thiamine is necessary for the normal course of most reactions in the body and is not available for independent synthesis.
  • Proteins – serve as a building material for cells and tissues, form immunity, affect the process of assimilation by the body of fats, minerals, and vitamins.
  • Fats – perform plastic, energy, and protective functions of the body.

Brazilian nuts are a source of Omega 6 and 3 fatty acids, selenium, and magnesium. The perfect combination for people with an active lifestyle.

The high content of these nutrients and vitamins helps to quickly remove toxins from the body, speeds up metabolism, increases endurance and tolerance to stress, and also promotes recovery from them.

In addition, the fiber found in nuts improves metabolism and digestion. Eating small amounts of nuts along with other healthy foods will help you feel fuller and reduce your usual serving size, which will also help you lose weight.

But it is important to understand that 100g contains about 700 kcal and a large number of trace elements, therefore it is recommended to consume no more than 2 nuts per day.

Thus, the Brazilian nut increases immunity in the prevention of respiratory diseases, improves the condition of bone tissue, improves metabolism, has a beneficial effect on the skin, and improves digestion.

Caloric content per 100 g – 659 kcal
Proteins 14.32 g
Fat 67.1 g
Carbohydrates 4.24 g

Brazilian nut harm
This product contains a large amount of protein, which, if consumed excessively, can put a lot of stress on the kidneys.

Brazilian nuts should not be consumed by people with allergic reactions. It is also not recommended to use this nut for pregnant women and children, as it is fraught with the development of asthma and allergies.

When eating Brazilian nuts, it is necessary to ensure that the peel of the fruit does not enter the body, since it contains the toxic substance aflatoxin, which can adversely affect the state of the liver and the body.

If you decide to diversify your diet and include Brazilian nuts in your diet, be sure to consult your doctor before using them.

The use of brazil nuts in medicine
Due to its composition, the Brazil nut is very often used in traditional medicine.

This product gained such popularity due to a whole list of beneficial effects on the human body:

  • nut lowers cholesterol levels;
  • normalizes blood sugar levels;
  • helps with bowel diseases, serves as an excellent adjuvant in treatment, since it cleanses the intestines and removes toxins;
  • high selenium content minimizes the risk of developing breast and prostate cancer;
  • helps to replenish the body’s energy, due to its high-calorie content.

The use of brazil nuts in cooking
In cooking, Brazil nuts are used in baked goods, desserts, puddings, chocolate, and ice cream. The Brazilian nut tastes like pine nuts.

Also, oil is squeezed out of it and used for dressing sauces and salads.

How to choose and store Brazilian nuts?
Brazilian nuts can be sold in two types: unpeeled in shell and fully shelled kernels.

It is best to choose refined grains for purchase since long-term storage of this product in the shell is harmful. Due to long-term storage, toxic substances are produced inside the nut that spoils its taste and has a negative effect on the intestines. Moreover, peeling a whole nut is very difficult and time-consuming.

When buying beans, you should be careful. Be sure to check their aroma, as this way you can easily understand the quality of the product. The scent should be pleasant, not rancid. The nut should be slightly damp to the touch, and the grains should break with a characteristic crunch.

Storage of the product is best in the refrigerator, in tight, light-tight bags. Under these conditions, Brazilian nuts can be stored for up to three months.

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