Updated 12 April 2013

Brazil nuts

Brazil nuts are particularly healthy due to their high selenium content, which makes their protein content "complete".

Brazil nuts are particularly healthy due to their high selenium content, which makes their protein content "complete". This means that, unlike the proteins in most plant products, Brazil nuts' proteins contain all the necessary amino acids to foster optimal growth in humans (in the same way as proteins from animal products do).

Selenium is also a powerful antioxidant linked to lower rates of cancer and heart disease. Brazil nuts are also a very good source of zinc (essential to digestion and metabolism).

Brazil nuts can be of particular use in the vegetarian diet as an added source of protein.

These nuts contain high amounts of fat. These fats are unsaturated and, therefore, "healthy" when ingested in moderate amounts.

Eight medium Brazil nuts count as one serving (30 grams). Since these nuts are relatively high in fat, they shouldn't be included in the diet more than three times per week. These nuts should also replace other fats in the diet and shouldn't just be added.

If you are a vegetarian or in some or other situation where you don't have access to sufficient amounts of animal protein, you could increase your dietary intake of Brazil nuts to five or six portions per week.

To reduce sodium and added fats in the diet, avoid salted, oil-roasted Brazil nuts. Rather choose the plain variety and roast them yourself in a baking tray at 180 degrees Celsius for a few minutes.

Add them to your favourite pasta recipe or eat them with low-fat Bulgarian yoghurt and honey.

Calories 664
Total fat 67,1 g
Protein 14,3 g
Carbohydrate 12,9 g
Fibre 5,4 g
Thiamine 1 mg
Magnesium 227,9 mg
Selenium 2 996,4 mcg

Per 100 g


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