The myth that eating nuts makes one fat has now been broken by a study that suggests that mono and polyunsaturated fats are good while simple carbohydrates are bad. Nuts contain monounsaturated fat that helps lower low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, the good kind. Monounsaturated fat does not raise triglyceride levels which is another risk factor in heart disease.
Preliminary evidence shows that even though nuts are high in fat and calories, they help people lose weight and keep it off as they help people stick to diet better because of their fibre content that gives a feeling of satiety. A Harvard study of dieters showed that those who get 35 per cent of their calories from the more healthful fats - the kind that nuts have - were three times as likely to keep the weight off as those who ate a diet with just 20 per cent of the calories from fat.
Research over the last 15 years strongly suggests that everyone's diet should include nuts, even though an ounce of unroasted nuts provides 157 to 204 calories and 13 to 22 grams of fat. Nuts are excellent sources of antioxidants, fibre and protein and also contain vitamins and minerals like magnesium, copper, folic acid and zinc that help protect against heart disease, high blood pressure and stroke, and may also prevent certain forms of cancer.