Almonds: An Ideal Staple Food




CANDY WITH BENEFITS™ Superfood Feature


The almond tree is native to the Mediterranean climate region of the Middle East, eastward to Iran, India, and as far as the Indus River in Pakistan. It was cultivated by humans in ancient times along the shores of the Mediterranean into North Africa, Asia and southern Europe, and in more recent times, transported to other parts of the world, notably California.


Almond Drupes - click to expand

Almonds are a nutrient-dense, high-energy, high quality protein, cholesterol-lowering healthy fat, low Glycemic Index carbohydrate, antioxidant-rich, sulphite-free, high-fibre superfood.



Wild Almond tree, Israel - click to expand


While wild almond species are toxic, domesticated almonds are not. The metabolism of amygdalin produces hydrogen cyanide, a potent toxin. Beta-glucosidase, one of the enzymes that catalyzes the release of cyanide from amygdalin, is present in the human small intestine and in a variety of common foods. 
Jared Diamond suggests that a common genetic mutation causes an absence of amygdalin, and this mutant was grown by early farmers, at first unintentionally in the garbage heaps, and later intentionally in their orchards.

The pollination of California's almonds is the largest annual managed pollination event in the world, with close to one million hives (nearly half of all beehives in the USA) being trucked in February to the almond groves.

Much of the pollination is managed by pollination brokers, who contract with migratory beekeepers from at least 49 states for the event. This business has been heavily affected by colony collapse disorder, causing nationwide shortages of honey bees and increasing the price of insect pollination. 
To alleviate almond growers from the rising cost of insect pollination, researchers at the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) have developed a new line of self-pollinating almond trees. 

 Mature Almonds - click to expand

Self-pollinating almond trees, such as the Tuono, have been around for a while, but their harvest is not as desirable as the insect-pollinated, Nonpareil almond tree. The Nonpareil tree produces large, smooth almonds and offers 60–65% edible kernel per nut. 


Almond Cultivars
 click to expand






SUPERFOOD DEFINED

For a food to qualify as a superfood by HEALTH COACH standards, it must be:

  • A whole food 
  • Natural and pure (organic when possible and always non-GM) 
  • Nutrient-dense 
  • Health-promoting 
  • The ability to act as medicine - to help heal your body


CANDY WITH BENEFITS™
superfood for heroes
are made with whole almonds





Almonds are nutrient dense: 
(23g - 1/4 cup) 

    • 10% Protein, 2% carbohydrate, 11% Fibre, 7% Calories
    • 49% Biotin, 40% Vitamin E, 27% Manganese, 26% Copper, 18% Vitamin B2, 16% Phosphorous, 15% Magnesium, 15% Molybdenum
    • The antioxidant value of almonds described in ORAC units is: 4,454 μ mol TE/100gORAC values are in units of µmol TE/100g (micromol Trolox Equivalent per 100 grams) The daily recommendation is 3000 to 5000 units of antioxidants.
    • 100 grams of almonds contain 12.20g or 30% of the daily recommended amount of dietary fibre. The high fibre of almonds help to prevent LDL (bad) cholesterol absorption by binding with substances containing cancer-causing chemicals, enhances colon efficiency, and promotes bowel function to reduce the risk of colitis, colon cancer, and hemorrhoids.
    • Almond Antioxidants: Alpha & Beta Carotenes, Cryptoxanthin, Lutein, Zeaxanthin, Lycopene, Full-Spectrum Omega Essential Fatty Acids, Kaempferol,  Quercetin, and Resveratrol
    • Almond skins are a rich source of bioactive polyphenols. The flavonoids found in almond skins team up with the vitamin E found in their meat to more than double the antioxidant punch either delivers when administered separately, shows a study published in the Journal of Nutrition. Twenty potent antioxidant flavonoids were identified. 
    • Roasting is the most suitable type of industrial processing of almonds to obtain almond skin extracts with the greatest antioxidant capacity.
    • Almond Vitamins: B Complex, C, A, D, and K
    • Almond Minerals: Iron, Fluoride, Magnesium, Manganese, Potassium, Zinc, Sodium, Selenium, and Calcium
    • Almonds raise levels of the hormone cholecystokinin, which is associated with a satisfied feeling of fullness. Including almonds in a diet could promote the exclusion of less nutritious foods, which improves the entire nutritional quality of diet. Researchers have also discovered that almonds help prevent carbohydrates from being absorbed, and to stop their own fat from being absorbed.



    • Almonds are the seeds of the fruit of the almond tree. Sweet almonds are the type that are eaten. Bitter almonds are used to make almond oil that is used as a flavoring agent for foods and liqueurs.
    • Practical Tip: To lower your risk of cardiovascular and coronary heart disease, enjoy a handful of nuts or 2 tablespoons of nut butter at least 4 times a week.
       





    Almonds:

    • Decrease LDL cholesterol by 7%, and total cholesterol by 5% - the same as statin medication
    • Lower blood pressure
    • Decrease the after-meal rise in blood sugar, preventing the increase in cholesterol-damaging free radicals that accompanies large elevations in blood sugar
    • Reduce the risk of heart disease 30%
    • Boost weight loss
    • Reduce the risk of weight gain
    • Reduce Alzheimer's symptoms
    • Reduce the risk of diabetes
    • Reduce the risk of cancer
    • Promote healthy eating
    • Reduce C-reactive protein, a marker of artery-damaging inflammation - as much as statin drugs
    • Help to prevent Gallstones













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