Popular Tết snacks that aid in weight loss and lower blood sugar levels, but caution with side effects

Cashew nuts are widely beloved by many Vietnamese people, especially during the Lunar New Year. Not only are these nuts delicious, but they are also nutritious. However, it is important to consume them properly to avoid any potential side effects.


The Benefits of Hazelnuts for Health

Good for cardiovascular health

Hazelnuts contain many good fats that help improve cardiovascular health. Additionally, hazelnuts also assist in reducing inflammation in the heart. Inflammation in the heart can lead to heart attacks and other cardiovascular diseases. The polyphenols in hazelnuts help reduce the risk of heart disease by promoting anti-inflammatory properties, improving the endothelial cells lining the heart and blood vessels.

The healthy fats in hazelnuts also help support blood pressure reduction. Additionally, they are very rich in antioxidants, carotenoids, polyphenols, vitamin E, and vitamin C. They effectively improve the elasticity of blood vessels.

Supports blood sugar reduction

The low carbohydrate content of hazelnuts helps release less sugar into the blood when our bodies convert carbohydrates into glucose. Therefore, they help reduce blood sugar levels and have a low glycemic index.

With a low glycemic index, hazelnuts release a low amount of sugar into the blood and decrease blood sugar levels. However, diabetes patients should only eat a maximum of 1 serving of hazelnuts (about 30g) per day is enough.

Supports weight loss

Thanks to their high fiber content and low fat content, hazelnuts are an ideal snack for you. The high protein content of hazelnuts promotes the energy-burning process and contributes to weight loss. These are one of the best nuts you should eat if you want to lose weight.

Improves sleep

This type of nut is rich in melatonin, a hormone released in the body to make us sleepy. This hormone regulates our sleep-wake cycle and the quality of our sleep. Therefore, eating hazelnuts in the evening before bedtime, 2-3 hours can improve sleep quality.

Reduces cholesterol levels

Thanks to their high antioxidant content, hazelnuts help protect cells from free radicals that cause diseases and aging. They are very beneficial for people with high cholesterol levels. Studies have shown that people who consumed 1-2 small servings of hazelnuts over 4 weeks saw a reduction in “bad” cholesterol.

Promotes a healthy digestive system

Hazelnuts contain minerals such as copper, manganese, vitamin B6, phosphorus, and thiamine that help supplement the microbiota (microbial environment in digestive health).

The microbiota strengthens the intestines, forms intestinal mucosal tissue, and protects against disease-causing agents. It also reduces inflammation in the intestines and promotes metabolism. Additionally, the high fiber content in hazelnuts helps regulate digestion by supplementing a large amount into the stool and supporting improved bowel movements.

Hazelnuts promote beneficial bacteria called probiotics that have super beneficial effects on intestinal health. Probiotics help increase the absorption of healthy nutrients such as protein, vitamins, and minerals from the diet. They also help eliminate harmful bacteria from the intestines. They also help lower the pH level in the colon, allowing stools to pass through easily.

Some side effects of eating too many hazelnuts

May lead to high blood pressure

You may also experience dizziness, blurred vision, confusion, and fainting. Additionally, consuming too many salt-roasted hazelnuts can increase the sodium level in the blood, increasing the risk of various cardiovascular diseases including high blood pressure.

May affect the digestive system

Due to their high fiber content, consuming a large quantity of hazelnuts can cause digestive disorders and lead to diarrhea, bloating, abdominal pain, irritable bowel syndrome. Hazelnuts also contain fructans that can cause gastrointestinal allergies.

Allergic reactions

People with nut allergies should avoid eating hazelnuts. Symptoms of hazelnut allergies include nausea, difficulty swallowing, oral itching, nasal congestion, hives, and nausea.

May contribute to kidney stones

Eating too many hazelnuts can increase the release of oxalate and methionine in the body. Oxalate can bind with calcium and potassium to create calcium and potassium oxalate. Additionally, methionine can convert to cysteine and lead to the formation of cystine kidney stones.

May cause weight gain

Eating hazelnuts helps with weight loss, but eating too much can lead to weight gain. The reason is that eating more hazelnuts than the recommended daily intake will increase calorie consumption, leading to weight gain.

Frequently asked questions

The good fats in hazelnuts improve cardiovascular health and reduce inflammation in the heart, lowering the risk of heart attacks and other cardiovascular diseases. The polyphenols in hazelnuts also exhibit anti-inflammatory properties and improve the health of endothelial cells lining the heart and blood vessels, further reducing the risk of heart disease.

Hazelnuts have a low carbohydrate content, which means less sugar is released into the bloodstream when carbohydrates are converted into glucose by the body. As a result, they help reduce blood sugar levels and have a low glycemic index, making them a suitable snack for people with diabetes (in moderation, of course—no more than 30g or 1 serving per day).

Hazelnuts are high in fiber and low in fat, making them an ideal snack for weight management. They also contain a good amount of protein, which promotes the energy-burning process and contributes to weight loss. They are one of the best nut choices if you’re looking to shed some pounds.

Hazelnuts are rich in melatonin, a hormone that regulates our sleep-wake cycle and sleep quality. Eating hazelnuts a few hours before bedtime can help improve your sleep. The tryptophan in hazelnuts also contributes to sleepiness and relaxation.

The high antioxidant content in hazelnuts protects cells from free radical damage and is especially beneficial for people with high cholesterol levels. Studies show that consuming small servings of hazelnuts over a few weeks can lead to a reduction in “bad” cholesterol (LDL) levels.

Hazelnuts promote a healthy digestive system by providing minerals like copper, manganese, vitamin B6, phosphorus, and thiamine, which support the microbiota (microbial environment) in the gut. They also contain high fiber, which regulates digestion and promotes healthy bowel movements. Additionally, hazelnuts encourage the growth of beneficial bacteria (probiotics) in the intestines, enhancing nutrient absorption and protecting against harmful bacteria.

While hazelnuts offer numerous health benefits, excessive consumption may lead to some side effects. These include a potential increase in blood pressure, especially if one consumes too many salt-roasted hazelnuts, which can raise sodium levels. Hazelnuts, due to their high fiber content, may also cause digestive issues such as diarrhea, bloating, abdominal pain, and irritable bowel syndrome. Individuals with nut allergies should avoid hazelnuts to prevent allergic reactions, including nausea, difficulty swallowing, oral itching, nasal congestion, hives, and anaphylaxis.
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