Pine nuts, a common ingredient in pesto sauces, has been cultivated for over 10,000 years. They’re found almost anywhere in the world, however, only 18 species of pine trees produce nuts large enough for human consumption. While pine nuts are small in size, they are big in flavor and are full of nutritional benefits. For example, pine nut benefits include lowering cholesterol, promoting eye health, and stabilizing mood. Learn more about pine nut nutrition by reading below.
Here are 7 pine nut benefits:
1. Lower bad cholesterol
Furthermore, a 2014 study found that women with metabolic syndrome saw significant improvements in cholesterol lipid levels after six weeks of nut consumption, including pine nuts. (2)
2. Help maintain healthy weight
Also on the list of pine nut benefits is the capability to promote a healthy weight. In fact, researchers found that those who eat pine nuts on a regular basis have a lower average weight, smaller weight circumference, and a lower level of insulin resistance as well. (3)
Additionally, pine nut nutrition includes a good dose of fiber, vitamin E, calcium, magnesium and potassium, all of which is correlated with an overall healthier diet and can help in weight loss goals. Reap pine nut benefits by making them a part of your healthy weight loss diet. (4)
3. Lower blood pressure
Pine nut benefits continue with the ability to lower blood pressure. This is because pine nut nutrition includes a high dose of magnesium, which is linked with lower blood pressure levels as well as reduced risk of stroke. (5)
High blood pressure can lead to a variety of serious health issues, including heart failure, aneurysm, reduced kidney function, and vision loss. To help avoid these high blood pressure and these conditions, considering adding pine nuts to your diet.
4. Support bone health
Pine nut benefits extend to the health of your bones, as well. Bone health goes beyond adequate calcium. While calcium plays a part, but so does vitamin K. In fact, men and women with high levels of K2 are 65 percent less likely to suffer bone and hip fractures, according to the Framingham Heart Study. This is in comparison to those who have low levels of K2.
A lot of people think that drinking milk will keep your bones healthy. However, milk becomes acidic after undergoing pasteurization. This leads to acidosis, which causes your body to leech alkaline, often from your bones. It is for this reason you should seek out other sources of calcium, as well as other bone-health promoting nutrients, such as vitamin K.
And concerning that area, pine nut nutrition is unique. Along with cashews, pine nuts are the only two tree nuts with significant levels of vitamin K. (6)
5. Lower risk of certain types of cancer
The magnesium in pine nuts helps in the effort to lower risk of cancer, as well. In fact, just one serving of pine nuts offers 18 percent of the recommended daily intake of magnesium. And diets high in magnesium are linked with lower risks of several cancer types.
For example, one study followed over 67,000 men and women to observe the incidences of pancreatic cancer in conjunction with magnesium consumption. They found that with every reduction of 100 milligrams of magnesium per day led to a 24 percent higher risk of developing pancreatic cancer. These changes, researchers asserted, couldn’t be determined by any other factors, such as differences in age, gender or body mass index. (7)
6. Improve eye health
Just like kale, pine nuts nutrition includes a significant amount of lutein, which is known as the “eye vitamin.” Your body can’t produce lutein on its own, so you can only get it from the food you eat. Lutein, along with zeaxanthin, help prevent macular degeneration as well as glaucoma.
In fact, the pine nut benefits those who have already endured some macular damage, as well. They can stop further damage by eating more foods with lutein, such as pine nuts.
7. Stabilize mood
Pine nut benefits also include stabilizing mood, thanks again th the magnesium content. Magnesium can be beneficial for teenagers and adults who suffer from conditions such as depression, anxiety, and ADHD.
A 2015 study discovered that adolescents with depression who increased their magnesium intake saw less outward behavior associated with mood disorders, such as anger outbursts. (9) An increase in magnesium helps adults who suffer from depression, as well, as another study shows. (10)
Considering that many depression medications are ineffective, these findings are definitely good news.
Pine nut nutrition is simply too good to ignore. Soak in pine nut benefits by adding them to your diet today! You can snack on them by the small handful, or sprinkle them on your salad.