Health Benefits of Pecans, From Fighting Gallstones to Preventing Cancer : Dr. Leonard

Health Benefits of Pecans, From Fighting Gallstones to Preventing Cancer

cancer pecansPecans are rich in healthy unsaturated fat, and just a handful a day can lower “bad” cholesterol. They also contain more than 19 vitamins and minerals including vitamins A, B, and E, folic acid, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, and zinc.

Just one ounce of pecans provides 10% of the Daily Recommended intake of fiber. Pecans are also rich in age defying antioxidants. In fact, research from the USDA shows that pecans are the most antioxidant-rich tree nut and rank among the top 15 foods with the highest levels of antioxidants.

This makes a bowl of Greek yogurt topped with blueberries and pecans a breakfast version of the fountain of youth!

Health Benefits

Low Cholesterol Levels

High level of cholesterol in the body is one of the causes of several cardiovascular ailments that are common in the current society. Eating pecans on a regular basis carries out this function of balancing the cholesterol levels. A study conducted by Rajaram S et al. suggests that pecans with its high monosaturated fat may be prescribed as a part of diet which is low in cholesterol levels to patients or healthy individuals.

Regulates Blood Sugar Levels

Nuts such as pecans are beneficial in maintaining blood sugar levels especially for those suffering from diabetes. Diabetes increases the risk of cardiovascular disorders and hence it is necessary to have a healthy diet that has necessary nutrients and minerals. Their consumption is not only recommended for those with diabetic condition but for those aspiring to keep this medical condition at bay. Research study suggests that intake of nuts such as pecans may reduce risk of type 2 diabetes.

Heart Health 

Health benefits of pecans include reduced risk of heart related ailments. Nuts such as pecans have protein, vitamin E and oxidant properties which help protect the heart and reducing risk of hypertension. They also contain monounsaturated fats like oleic acid along with phenolic antioxidants that are healthy for your heart and help prevent coronary artery disease and strokes.

Rich in Antioxidants

Pecan contains elements that help with inhibiting oxidation which protects against many diseases and chronic illnesses such as heart disease and cancer.

Anti-inflammatory Benefits

Pecans are rich in magnesium which is known for its anti-inflammatory properties. Studies have proved that increased magnesium intake reduces inflammatory indicators in the body. It also reduces inflammation in the arterial walls, reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease, arthritis, Alzheimer’s disease and other inflammatory ailments.

Aids Weight Control

Pecans is also beneficial in managing weight, as they are rich in fats but also contain protein and fiber which keep you feeling full longer to help lower caloric intake.

Digestive Health

The fiber contained in pecans promotes colon health and facilitates regular bowel movements. It enables the colon to work at greater levels of efficiency by cleaning out the gastrointestinal system. Besides, it prevents constipation and reduces the risk of colitis, colon cancer and hemorrhoids.

Fights Gallstones

Consumption of nuts such as peanuts, almonds and pecans etcis also associated with reduced risk of gallstones.

Reduced Cancer Risk

Pecans can help in reducing risk of cancer, as the rich phenolic compounds & tannins are associated with prevention of various diseases including cardiovascular disorders and cancer. Pecans are also rich in phytochemical substances such as polyphenolic antioxidant ellagic acid, vitamin E, beta-carotene, lutein and zea-xanthin. These compounds play an important role in removing toxic oxygen-free radicals, thus protecting your body from diseases and infections.

Bone & Teeth Health

Phosphorus is one of the most abundant minerals in the body after calcium. Nearly 85% of phosphorus is found in bones and teeth while the other 15% is found in cells and tissues. Besides cleansing the waste from the body, phosphorus, along with calcium, promotes the health of your bones and teeth. This mineral is also vital for the growth and repair of cells and tissues as well as production of DNA and RNA. Lastly, it prevents muscle pain that can occur due to exercising.

Helps Maintain a Clear Complexion

The outside appearance of our skin depends upon how we treat it from the inside. Adequate nutrition is inevitable for maintaining a healthy skin and preventing problems. The toxins inside your body can make your skin suffer by causing breakouts, dullness and excess oil. Pecans are a good source of fiber which can do wonders for your health and your skin, by aiding in the elimination of toxins and waste from the body, which improves the appearance of your skin.

Pecans also contain zinc which helps in maintaining skin health by guarding against infections. Levels of Vitamin A which is an antioxidant, gives you a clear complexion as well.

Anti-aging Benefits

Pecans contain numerous antioxidants to fight and eliminate the free radicals responsible for causing premature skin aging. Pecans can prevent the occurrence of signs of aging such as fine lines, wrinkles and pigmentation.

Stimulates Hair Growth & Prevents Hair Loss

Just like our skin, healthy hair is also a reflection of a healthy body, and our hair follicles require adequate supply of vital nutrients to maintain their health and prevent hair problems.  Pecans are an excellent source of L-arginine, an amino acid that helps treat male pattern baldness, as well as encourage the growth of healthy hair. Vibrant blood flow throughout the body and to the hair roots is vital for healthy hair growth and scalp.

Anemia is caused by iron deficiency in the blood, and is a common reason for hair loss. Pecans are a good source of iron, and can be included in your diet to improve your blood iron levels and combat hair loss.

Storing Pecans

Pecans have a long shelf life especially when kept under the right conditions. You can buy them in bulk and store for future use.

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