What Is Akhrot (Walnut)?
Walnuts, also known as Akhrot, provides fibre, healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals. This wrinkly nut is a superfood of its kind and benefits human health in numerous ways. They are a delicious means to add extra nutrition to the diet as they add flavour and crunch to it.
Walnuts are a significant source of Omega-3 fatty acids. The kernel of the walnut has two lobes that look like a butterfly. The off-white lobes have a cover of thin brown-coloured skin. These are attached partially and are flavoursome to eat.
They are easily available everywhere. Consume this healthy nut every day without worrying about health. Akrhrots ensure better functioning of the brain and neurological system. They make an impact on neurocognitive functioning. Including Akhrot in the diet in any known form has multiple benefits for health.
Calories in Akhrot (Walnut)
Every 100 grams serving of walnut consists of-
- 654 Calories in akhrot
- 15.2g Proteins
- 2.6g Sugar
- 65.2g Fat
- 13.7g Carbohydrates
- 6.7g Fiber
- 1.2mg Vitamin C
- 9.08g Omega 3
- 38.09g Omega 6
- 4% Water
- 65% Fat Content
- Copper, Vitamin B6, Vitamin E, Phosphorous, Folic Acid, and Manganese
1) Rich in Antioxidants
Walnuts or Akhrot have higher antioxidants than any nut. This activity comes from Vitamin E, Melatonin, and Plant compounds or Polyphenols (this is very high in the skin of Walnuts). A study in healthy adults showed that a walnut-rich meal prevents oxidative damage of LDL cholesterol. That is helpful as oxidised LDL builds up in the arteries and causes atherosclerosis.
2) Great Plant Source of Omega-3s
Akhrot or Walnuts are a greater source of Omega-3 than any nut. It provides 2.5 grams per 1-ounce serving. Omega-3 fat from the plants is called alpha-linolenic acid. It is one of the essential fats. A single serving of akhrot benefits an adequate intake of ALA.
3) May Reduce Inflammation
Inflammation causes many diseases, including heart diseases, cancer, Alzheimer’s, and type 2 diabetes. All these conditions can be a result of oxidative stress. Walnuts have polyphenols that can help fight oxidative stress and inflammation. A group of polyphenols called ellagitannins might be involved.
4) May encourage a Healthy Gut
Many studies have claimed that a gut is rich in health-promoting bacteria and microbes. It promotes good overall health. An unhealthy configuration of this microbiota contributes to inflammation. It can also stimulate diseases in your gut and body, increase the risk of obesity, cancer, and heart disease.
5) May Reduce Risk of Cancer
Many studies have suggested that consuming Walnuts might reduce the risk of some cancers, including prostate, breast, and colorectal cancers. Walnuts are rich in Polyphenol Ellagitannins and Urolithins. These ensure better gut health. Maintaining gut health improves overall health.
6) Supports Weight Loss
Walnuts are rich in calories. Many studies also suggest that the energy absorbed from Walnuts is 21% lower than expected. These nutrients decrease appetite and hunger and ensure higher chances of weight control with the benefits of nutrients. Apart from maintaining weight, Akhrot also adds nutrients to the body.
7) May Help Manage and lower risk of Type 2 Diabetes
Studies suggest that a major reason why Walnuts are linked to a lower risk of type 2 diabetes is; they help to control weight. If you have excess weight, it also increases the risk of high blood sugar or diabetes. Eating Walnuts helps to reduce blood sugar beyond its influence on weight control.
8) May Help Lower Blood Pressure
One of the major factors for heart disease, high blood pressure, may also lead to stroke. Studies also suggest that consuming Walnuts might lower blood pressure. Lower BP is also observed in people with high blood pressure and even among healthy people under stress. Akhrot considerably reduces the chances of any other diseases keeping blood pressure in check.
9) Supports Healthy Ageing
As one ages, it is vital to maintain mobility and independence. Good physical functioning can help with this purpose. Eating habits also help improve physical abilities and ensure lesser chances of physical impairment. Walnuts are among the foods which contribute to a healthy diet and ensure healthy ageing.
10) Supports Good Brain Function
Research suggests that walnut is beneficial for the brain. Studies also found that nutrients in Walnuts like polyunsaturated fat, vitamin E, and polyphenol reduce oxidative damage and inflammation in the human brain.
Research has shown that people who consume Akhrot have seen significant improvements in their learning skills, memory, anxiety reduction, and stress control.
11) May supports Male Reproductive Health
Many studies show that diets that are high in processed foods, sugar, or refined grains lead to a reduction in sperm function. Akhrot benefits for males are great as it might help support sperm health and improve male fertility. Studies show that the nutrients in Walnuts improve sperm shape, vitality, and mobility.
12) Improves Blood Fats
Higher levels of bad or LDL cholesterol and triglycerides are linked to higher chances of heart disease risk. Studies have shown that eating Walnuts can consistently decrease bad cholesterol levels and improve the quality of blood fat. It also ensures better heart health and fewer chances of a stroke.
13) Helps promote hair health
Walnut oil, when applied to your scalp, helps keep your roots moisturised and healthy. This prevents dandruff and dryness. Akhrot benefits by reducing your chances of balding and promotes good hair growth.
14) May Promote Heart Health
As Walnuts have a high level of omega-3 fatty acids, they are beneficial for the cardiovascular system. Eating a few Walnuts every day helps to reduce blood pressure.
The Omega-3 fatty acids are also known to reduce bad cholesterol in the body. They also encourage the production of good cholesterol. Walnuts help to reduce inflammation and can boost blood vessel function. Therefore, walnuts or akhrot promote heart health.
15) May Boost Immunity
Walnuts consist of antioxidants that help to keep the immune system healthy. Walnuts can also prevent the onset of diseases in the body. Adding Walnuts to a person’s diet every day helps to boost immunity. Walnuts are highly rich in vitamins and minerals like copper and vitamin B6 that can help in boosting immunity.
16) May Improve Bone Health
Walnuts consist of essential fatty acid known as alpha-linolenic acid. ALA and its components are associated with healthier and stronger bones. These omega-3 fatty acids that are present in walnuts also help. They are capable of fighting inflammation and decreasing bone resorption in humans. So a healthy intake of almonds can ensure better bone health.
17) May Provide Better Sleep
Walnuts consist of melatonin. The compound is associated with improved sleep patterns. Omega-3 fatty acids also keep the blood pressure low and help to relieve stress. Less stress also results in better sleep. However, more research is required to understand this.
18) May Cure Fungal Infections
Evidence suggests that Walnuts might help treat fungal infections. The growth of candida in the digestive system or on the skin can get aggravating. These infections create uncomfortable symptoms like allergies and itching. Walnuts are as effective as some other treatments against these fungal infections.
19) May Help Detox the Body
A research claims that fibre in Walnuts might help cleanse the system. The nutrient in Walnuts also flushes out the harmful parasites. Walnuts are a healthy snack, but they should be taken in moderation. They might cause allergies in some individuals. There is limited research in this field.
20) May Delay Skin Ageing
Walnuts are great for the skin. They are full of Vitamin B. The vitamins help to ease stress and hence improve mood. Lower stress levels help in promoting skin health. But more information is needed in this regard. The increased stress levels lead to signs of ageing and the earlier onset of wrinkles on the skin.
21) Akhrot Benefits in Pregnancy
There are many health benefits of eating akhrot in pregnancy. The nutritional value of Akhrot is many and eating them helps women during their pregnancy. Women who are expecting should consume more walnuts to ensure the below benefits.
It has been established through studies that pregnant women who eat Akhrot in their pregnancy are less likely to have children with any nut allergies. The crunchy and delicious Walnuts contain many nutrients that are beneficial for a pregnant woman. The benefits of Akhrot during pregnancy are as mentioned below.
- Walnuts are a rich source of Omega-3 fatty acids. They are necessary for the development of brain activity in the foetus. Consuming akhrot in pregnancy can help to boost the development of a baby’s brain.
- Walnuts consist of Vitamin E in the form of gamma-tocopherol, which is an extremely effective form of Vitamin E. It has unique antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. It helps to get rid of damaging free radicals in the body.
- Walnuts are a rich source of vitamins, magnesium, fibre, manganese, and copper. They are loaded with calcium, zinc, iron, and selenium. Their nutritional value adds to the many advantages of Walnuts.
- Walnuts are an excellent source of alpha-linolenic acid, which is an essential fatty acid that is required for the development of the baby.
23) Akhrot Benefits for Brain
The stress related to oxidation is linked to age-related cognitive decline. In many cases, this leads to dementia. Studies about antioxidant-rich dietary patterns suggest that Akhrot or walnut lowers the incidence of cognitive impairment. Omega-3 fatty acids and polyphenols are critical brain foods that counteract oxidative stress and inflammation.
Akhrot is rich in alpha-linolenic acid, a plant-based omega-3 fatty acid. They possess more polyphenolic compounds than any nut, and hence akhrot benefits the brain.
These are the two main drivers of cognitive decline. Thus, Walnuts beneficially influence cognition and brain function. A study that examined the cognitive effects of walnut in healthy elders has seen better results in cognitive function with regular intake.
Soaked Akhrot Benefits
Below are some of the main benefits of consuming soaked Akhrot:
1) Helpful for Diabetics
Many studies suggest that consuming soaked Walnuts every day might help control diabetes. It is more beneficial in people with Type-2 diabetes.
2) Prevents Cancer
Akhrot has antioxidant properties because of which they have compounds that slow the growth of cancer cells in the body. Studies have shown that consuming Walnuts also prevents colon cancer.
3) Fights Stress
Akhrot is a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids. Consuming them every day might help to fight depression and stress. Soaked Walnuts are a great mood enhancer.
4) Helps in Weight Loss
Consuming soaked akhrot benefits you by making you lose weight. They are a good source of calcium, iron, potassium, zinc, and copper. They increase body metabolism and help in losing excess fat from the body. Walnuts have good fats that make you feel full and prevent overeating.
5) Helps in Better Sleep
Akhrot has melatonin that ensures better sleep. Having soaked Walnuts in the morning and before sleeping ensures better sleep.
6) Makes Bones and Teeth Stronger
Soaked Akhrot benefits help to make the bones and teeth stronger.
8) Maintains Cholesterol
Soaked Walnuts are seen to lower bad cholesterol levels in the body. They regulate cholesterol levels and prevent heart diseases. Lower cholesterol levels promote heart health.
How to Eat Akhrot
Some people find consuming Akhrot to be a task. There are some great ways to include this nut in your diet. These are detailed below:
- Crush some roasted Walnuts and include them in the stuffing of your paratha or chapatis. Akhrot makes the paratha crunchier and more delicious.
- Add Walnuts to protein shakes or smoothies. You can crush them along with all the other ingredients. The recipe will add crunch to your drinks and make them healthy.
- Include Akhrot in your homemade walnut chutney by using garlic, lemon, ginger with Walnuts. Add some oil, salt, and pepper for extra taste. You can also add mint for a better flavour to the chutney.
- For kids, mix some honey and cocoa powder with Walnuts and make a paste. You can include this paste in their milk and smoothies.
Side Effects of Akhrot (Walnuts)
There are Akhrot dry fruit benefits for various parts of the body. But there are some side effects of Akhrot that should also be understood. It is vital to exercise some caution in this regard. Below are the side effects of Akhrot:
- Walnuts are one of the most allergenic foods identified globally. It can cause a severe allergic reaction in the body. It can also lead to anaphylaxis that can be fatal.
- Due to the allergic nature of walnuts, it is vital to ensure caution while giving them to children and pregnant women. If you have never eaten Walnuts, it is crucial to exercise caution while consuming them.
- In some cases, akhrot can also reduce the absorption of minerals like iron. Such a mechanism can be extremely harmful in the case of pregnant women.
- Walnuts are a superfood. Even if you do not have a walnut allergy, it is vital to ensure that you are not allergic to other components such as the shell, husk, or additives used to flavour the walnuts.
Akhrot is a healthy addition to our daily diet. It is available everywhere and requires minimal cooking time. Walnuts have numerous benefits and high nutritional value. There is no wrong or right way to consume this super healthy nut.
There is no best way to consume walnuts. Including akhrot in your diet in any form is good for your health. A rich diet ensures adequate fibre, protein and it contains vitamins and minerals, unsaturated fat, Omega-3 alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), magnesium, and phosphorus. So consume Akhrot daily and ensure a healthy and long life.
How Many Walnuts Can Be Eaten in a Day?
It is good to consume at least four walnuts every day. This will help in curing diseases like obesity, cancer, diabetes and help in maintaining body weight, reproductive, cognitive health, and other lifestyle-related problems.
What Is the Best Time to Eat Akhrot?
Soaking overnight and consuming them in the morning is the best way to consume Akhrot. Take 2-4 pieces of walnuts and soak them in water overnight. Consume them first thing in the morning. Consuming soaked akhrot benefits by reducing bad cholesterol in the body. They are easy to digest compared to unsoaked Walnuts. It is easy for the body to absorb nutrients if the Walnuts are soaked.
Is Walnut Good for Hair?
Walnuts contain vitamin B, vitamin E, biotin, and lots of magnesium. These nutrients are required to strengthen the hair cuticles and help in nourishing the scalp. Consuming Walnuts helps repair hair from exposure and damage from the sun.
- Abha Chauhan and Ved Chauhan, Feb 2020; Beneficial Effects of Walnuts on Cognition and Brain Health -https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7071526/
- Samaneh Rouhi, Bijan Nouri, S.H. Miandasteh, January 2015;In vitro study of antifungal effect of walnut (Juglans regia L.) leaf extract on the malassezia furfur fungus- https://www.researchgate.net/publication/281731688_In_vitro_study_of_antifungal_effect_of_walnut_Juglans_regia_L_leaf_extract_on_the_malassezia_furfur_fungus
- Wendie A. Robbins, Lin Xun, Leah Z. FitzGerald, Samantha Esguerra, Susanne M. Henning, Catherine L. Carpenter, October 2012;Walnuts Improve Semen Quality in Men Consuming a Western-Style Diet: Randomized Control Dietary Intervention Trial - https://academic.oup.com/biolreprod/article/87/4/101, 1-8/2514205
- Chandra L Jackson, Frank B Hu, July 2014; Long-term associations of nut consumption with body weight and obesity - https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24898229/
- W. Elaine Hardman, February 2014;Walnuts Have Potential for Cancer Prevention and Treatment in Mice - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3952627/