Every healthy foodie knows that nuts are nutritional powerhouses. Sure, the crunchy snacks can be high in calories, but they also deliver tons of impressive health benefits, making them a great addition to a healthy diet when consumed in moderation. And as an added bonus, they’re totally delicious.
One benefit: Certain nuts may help you stay slim, thanks to their winning combination of omega-3 fatty acids (that’s the good kind of fat!), protein, and fiber, which work together to fill you up so you’re less likely to mindlessly graze later on. By noshing on a serving of energy-dense nuts, you may actually help yourself eat fewer empty calories for the rest of the day.
What’s more, some types of nuts are particularly good for your heart, since they contain alpha linoleic acid (or ALA), a type of omega-3 fatty acid found in plants that may benefit heart arrhythmias and reduce inflammation in the arteries. Score.
The bottom line? Knowing which nuts are healthiest is key for reaping their benefits. Are cashews as good as almonds? What’s better, walnuts or pistachios? And as always, there are some caveats. For example, you’ll want to steer clear of nut mixes that are made with added salt or sugary coatings—those often pack tons of extra calories.
Curious which types are best for you? In this video, we highlight the top five healthiest nuts and the nutritional perks each provide. From fighting inflammation to keeping bones strong, there’s no doubt these superfood snacks always deserve a spot in your kitchen.