Almonds are an excellent source of vitamin E, magnesium, and manganese; they are a good source fiber, copper, phosphorous and riboflavin. When compared ounce for ounce, almonds are the nut highest in protein (6g), fiber, calcium (75mg), vitamin E, riboflavin and niacin (1mg). Talk about good things coming in a small package.
Your body’s metabolism creates something called “free radicals,” which are unstable molecules that can damage cells, lead to disease, and contribute to aging. The particles that corral these free radicals and stop them from harming cells are called antioxidants and they either made by your body or supplied from the foods you eat.
Of the antioxidants your body cannot make, vitamin E is one of the most important because it breaks the destructive chain free radicals start, protecting your cells from harm. But getting enough vitamin E can be tricky in today’s fast-food world, which is one reason adding almonds to your diet are a smart idea. The two top whole food sources of naturally occurring vitamin E are almonds and sunflower seeds, and the natural vitamin E found in almonds is twice as potent as the synthetic vitamin E found in most supplements. A handful of almonds supplies about half the recommended daily requirement of vitamin E, which is an important reason to grab your healthy handful every day.
Protein is part of the cells, tissue and organs of your body. Because each of those break down and must be rebuilt daily, we need to consume the protein needed to do that, along with carbohydrates and fat—the other meganutrients your body requires. The amount of protein contained in a single handful of almonds is nearly as much as you get from a hard-boiled egg and almonds are the only protein source that’s also an excellent source of vitamin E.
You can read more about almonds and protein, including specific study citations in the Nutrition Benefits section at www.AlmondsAreIn.com.
One small almond delivers a whollop of nutrients, from the largest macronutrients (fat, protein, carbohydrates) to the smallest phytochemicals thought to help prevent cancer and other diseases. The following chart, taken from the USDA Nutrient Laboratory Database and found at www.AlmondsAreIn.com gives a complete breakdown of almonds compared to other tree nuts:
Nutrient Content of Tree Nuts
USDA Nutrient Laboratory Database, Release 20 (Nd - no data); Bolded numbers indicate highest value.
|(1 ounce whole natural)||Almond||Brazil Nut||Cashew||Hazelnut||Macadamia||Pecan||Pistachio||Walnut|
|Total Fat (g)||14||19||13||17||21||20||13||19|
|Dietary Fiber (g)||3.5||2.1||0.9||2.7||2.4||2.7||2.9||1.9|
|Pantothenic acid (mg)||0.1||0.1||0.3||0.3||0.2||0.3||0.2||0.2|
|Vitamin B6 (mg)||tr||tr||0.1||0.2||0.1||0.1||0.5||0.2|
|Vitamin A (UI)||0||0||0||6||0||16||157||6|
|Saturated Fat (g)||1.1||4.3||2.2||1.3||3.4||1.8||1.5||1.7|
|Monounsaturated fat (g)||8.8||7||6.7||12.9||16.7||11.6||6.6||2.5|
|Polyunsaturated fat (g)||3.4||5.8||2.2||2.2||0.4||6.1||3.8||13|