Not all types of nuts are edible. Steer through this article to get to know the different types of edible nuts.

Types Of Edible Nuts

Nuts are plant embryos that are enclosed in a hard shell that protects the embryo from the surrounding environment. The shell splits open in the middle when the seed matures fully. The body of the nut is usually oily and crunchy in texture. Not all nuts are edible. While some nuts have high health benefits, some nuts can be lethal. Edible nuts can be stored for a long time as they are protected by a tough shell. Most edible nuts are rich in vitamin, mineral, and protein content making them a great dietary choice. Edible nuts are loaded with ‘monosaturated’ and ‘polysaturated fatty acids’, ‘thiamine’, ‘iron’, ‘calcium’, ‘magnesium’, ‘zinc’, and ‘phosphorus’. These nuts have high contents or ‘polyphenols’ and ‘arginine’ that help improve the functioning of the circulatory system. Walnuts and almonds are especially good for lowering LDL cholesterol. Nuts are also rich in ‘omega 3 fatty acids’ that are useful components to reduce the risk of heart diseases. Patients with type 2 diabetes are recommended to consume nuts for their low ‘glycemic index’. Almond oil extracted from almonds is rich in vitamin E and is therefore widely used in skin care and hair care products. Almond oil is also used in different cosmetic products and in aromatherapy. To know more about the different types of edible nuts, read on.

 Different Kinds Of Edible Nuts

The almond is a member of the plum family. The nut is present inside a mature fruit which splits open when fully ripe. Almonds can be eaten both raw as well roasted, with or without the outer skin. This nut is very rich in vitamin E and has countless health benefits. Almonds if stored in cool dry places, can last for a long time. 

Cashew Nuts
The cashew nut is probably one of the most popular nuts to be consumed worldwide. This nut grows on a bushy low branched cashew tree. Raw cashew is toxic. It is only after extensive drying and processing that these nuts are rendered edible. During processing, cashew nuts are removed from their shells and processed to remove the naturally occurring venomous resin known as ‘caustic oil’. Cashews are rich source of zinc and can be eaten as snacks or can be used to garnish sweets, cakes, and other foods. Cashew nuts are highly perishable and have to be stored in a refrigerator.

Walnuts are not only flavorsome nuts, but they also have innumerable health benefits as well. These nuts are high in protein, vitamin B, E, rich in fiber content, antioxidants, magnesium, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats and omega 3 fatty acids. In fact these nuts are said to contain more omega 3 fatty acids than any other edible nuts. Walnuts are widely used in cakes and chocolates. These nuts have a tendency to turn fusty fast and therefore they should be consumed within a few days of them being bought.

Brazil Nuts
Brazil nuts are another popular variety of edible nuts. These nuts are enclosed in a hard dark brown shell. The actual nut is a three sided seed which can be eaten raw  as a snack. The Brazil nut is a rich source of zinc. The nut can be stored for a few months in a cool dry place. Brazil nuts are commonly used to decorate cakes, cookies, candies and salads.

The acorn or oak nut comes from the oak tree. The nuts of this tree are single seeded and remain enclosed within a leathery shell. Acorn contains bitter tannins which are removed by boiling the nut in water for about one to two minutes. The nuts are then cut in quarter after they have cooled and then ground to make flour. These nuts are helpful in controlling blood sugar levels.

Other Edible Nuts
  • Pistachios
  • Coconuts
  • Hazelnuts
  • Pine nuts
  • Chestnuts
  • Beechnuts
  • Butternuts
  • Pecans

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