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Nuts and Seeds

The news on nuts can be good or bad depending on what kind of nutritional content you are looking for. Many nuts provide a concentrated source of protein, but some nuts also bring a high level of carbohydrates. Good choices for low carb nuts include pecans and macadamia nuts. Although chestnuts appear to have a high carbohydrate count, they do contain more complex carbohydrates and thefore have a low glycemic index.

If you want to have healthier kinds of nuts and seeds, look for those that have high polyunsaturated fats as these types are also high in omega-3 and omega-6. Omega-3 and omega-6 fats are definitely good for the heart. Diabetic individuals should take special care to help prevent any cardiac complications. Some research studies indicate that nuts are great help in managing the onset and symptoms of diabetes. Studies also have shown that eating more nuts is an excellent way to lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the blood.

Low-carb diets often allow the addition of nuts and seeds in small amounts, although you usually won’t see them in the most stringent phases of the diet. Nuts and seeds are an excellent natural source of mono-unsaturated fats. Raw, unsalted nuts tend to be the healthier choice in most cases. Roasted nuts usually contain oils and excess salt we would be better off without.

Many diabetics find that peanut butter works quite well as a long-acting source of protein and carbohydrate. A common diabetic snack to counteract low blood sugar is applesauce and peanut butter crackers. In fact, most nut butters are an excellent source of slow-acting carbohydrates.

With their relatively high protein levels, some nuts are an attractive alternative to other protein rich sources, such as meat. Experts recommend that the best way to eat nuts and seeds in a healthy manner is to pour some in a small container. This helps you practice portion control and keeps you from eating more than you may have intended. In general, most low-carb diets suggest limiting your intake of nuts and seeds to only a few ounces a day.

Low carbohydrate seeds include flaxseed, sunflower seeds and sesame seeds.

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