The almond was originally cultivated in the Mediterranean region, mainly the Middle Eastern climate but is now found in almost all the parts of the world. This nut, which comes in a hard shell, is full of benefits mainly because of its low carbohydrate and high vitamin content. In comparison to other nuts of the same category, almonds are much richer in terms of nutrient contents with a high calcium, iron, magnesium and phosphorus contents.
It is also a very rich source of Vitamin E. Almond has been considered as an extremely beneficial nutrient in Ayurveda and is believed to be good for the brain and the nervous system. It is a natural aphrodisiac and is believed to boost the libido when it is massaged or consumed in the oil form. There are several other benefits of almonds which are firmly maintained by many, in spite of not being proven or documented medically.
There are mainly two variants of almonds; one is sweet and the other bitter. The sweet almonds are used for consumption and the bitter variety is used to make almond oil. Both the variants are packed with their own unique benefits and uses. Almonds are generally eaten in the raw form but can also be soaked overnight for consumption, baked to get a crunchier taste or added to different dishes to increase the texture.
Although, not medically proven, but Ayurvedic medicine believes in the power of almonds to boost brain functioning and advices consumption of almonds, especially by children to increase brain power.
Cholesterol and heart problems:
Almonds are very low in carbohydrate content and also has the ability to lower bad cholesterol (HDL) and increase good cholesterol (LDL) levels in the body. Almonds are rich in mono-saturated fats, the consumption of which reduces the risk of heart diseases. There have been various studies and researches done which has proved that almonds help in maintaining a good cardiovascular health. Also due to the magnesium content in almonds, a regular and healthy blood, oxygen and nutrients flow is ensured in the body which in turn reduces the risk of heart attacks.
Almonds have also been known to maintain a balanced sugar level in the body because of its ability to decrease after meals sugar level and also as it is rich in anti oxidants. The ability of almonds to decrease the after meals sugar levels help in protecting against diabetes.
Skin and hair Care:
Almond oil is considered to be one of the best natural skin care ingredient. Almonds help in alleviating dry skin, maintains the elasticity of the skin, gets rid of wrinkles and in general soothes the ageing effects from one’s skin. Almond oil is a rich source of Vitamin E which is very essential for maintaining a glowing, beautiful skin. Almond oil is considered to be very good for your hair as it is packed with nutrients. It adds luster and shine to your hair, aids in maintaining a good scalp health and is also a conditioner.
Prevention of Gallstones:
Several preliminary studies have shown that eating a handful of nuts can actually prevent gall bladder stones from forming in your stomach. Almonds are also known to be helpful in preventing colon cancer, helps in maintaining good bone and teeth health, aids in weight loss, prevention of cancer like colon cancer etc.