Nuts and seeds are abundant in many vitamins and minerals. Now that you are pregnant (congratulations!) you will be scurrying many pages to know what’s safe and what’s not. We try to ease your doubts on eating walnuts during pregnancy. Walnuts are edible, delicious nuts belonging to the tree nut family like cashews. Walnuts are usually harvested in the month of December. Among the nuts, walnuts are considered to be their king. Walnuts should be consumed fully including the skin. About ninety percentage of phenols in walnuts are found in its skin. So don’t remove the skin even if it is slightly bitter in taste.
Nutritional Benefits Of Walnuts
- Walnuts are rich in proteins, vitamins, and minerals
- Walnuts are known to boost the activities of the brain, all thanks to their content of Omega 3 fatty acids
- It is also considered as the only nut with a sufficient quantity of alpha-linolenic acid, which is an essential fatty acid which can be attained only through diet
- It is the richest source of antioxidants. Antioxidants help in preventing or delaying cell damage. The aging process is controlled by antioxidants
- Around eight percentage of daily required vitamin B6 is present in one ounce (28 grams) of walnut. Vitamin B6 is essential for the metabolism
- It has vitamin E in the form of gamma-tocopherol, which is remarkable because in most of the nuts vitamin E is found in the form of alpha-tocopherol. Gamma-tocopherol form of vitamin E contains unique properties which make it a more effective form of vitamin E
- The regular consumption of walnuts has been found to decrease the level of LDL which is bad cholesterol and increase the level of HDL which is good cholesterol. Thus, it plays an important role in retaining a healthy heart
- Its manganese content is also high. Half of the daily required amount of manganese can be provided by one serve of walnut
- Other minerals like phosphorous, zinc, potassium, magnesium, calcium, and iron are also found in walnuts
- It is also a rich source of copper which is an essential trace element plays an important role in metabolism, absorption of iron by the body, stimulate immune systems and to neutralize free radicals ( free radicals cause cell damage)
- Walnuts are found to reduce the risk of cancer and increase the health of the heart
As you can see, walnuts come with a host of nutritional benefits, justifying being the king of nuts! Now, let’s find out whether they are as good in pregnancy.
Health Benefits Of Eating Walnuts During Pregnancy
- Walnuts have countless health benefits as it is packed with lots of minerals and vitamins which helps in the healthy development of your unborn child
- The omega 3 fats found in walnuts helps in the development of eyes and brain of your unborn baby
- Walnuts help in reducing the inflammation of blood vessels which benefit in controlling high blood pressure during pregnancy
- Walnuts help in maintaining the favorable lipid profile during pregnancy
- Copper in walnuts helps to ensure the normal growth and development of the fetus
- The anti-inflammatory phyto-nutrients that are present in walnuts contribute to disease preventing mechanisms during pregnancy
- Walnuts are well packed with antioxidants which help to increase the immunity during pregnancy. Some of the antioxidants present in walnuts are unique as they are not found anywhere else. You should eat walnuts along with its brown skin as 90% of the antioxidants found in the walnut is concentrated in its skin
- It also helps in maintaining weight during pregnancy because of its rich fiber and protein content. The fiber content can also help with constipation
- Melatonin is a hormone that helps to bring about sleep. Walnuts are found to elevate the melatonin level in blood, helping to get proper sleep during pregnancy
- Earlier it was believed that intake of nuts are not safe during pregnancy as it may develop nut allergy in the child in the future. Further research found this claim to be a misconception, It was found that among the women who stopped eating nuts during pregnancy the number of babies born with nut allergy was higher than the women who consumed nuts during pregnancy. This is may be because they are not able to develop immunity against nut allergy when they are in the womb as their mother was not having them. Therefore, it is good for you to have walnuts during pregnancy if you are not prone to the nut allergy
What Are The Risk Factors Of Eating Walnuts During Pregnancy?
- Among the first eight foods that cause allergy, walnut is one. So if some symptoms like wheezing, coughing, skin rashes, swelling of lips, and sneezing develops after eating a walnut, consult a doctor before taking it anymore
- Sometimes its property of preventing blood from clotting to improve the blood flow, will turn to be a curse at the process of delivery by increasing the bleeding
- Eating too much of walnuts during pregnancy is found to cause diarrhea, limit the intake to be a handful of walnuts everyday
- Having four to five walnuts per day is considered to be a proper consumption. Having walnuts in a limited quantity suggested by your doctor is recommended during pregnancy
Walnuts are rich in oil. So if you keep them in room temperature they will easily get spoiled. Therefore always store them in the refrigerator or in airtight containers. Enjoy this tasty, crunchy nut, in limits (as suggested by doctor), without inhibitions during your pregnancy. Click here to read about eating nuts and seeds during pregnancy.