Inflammation is the body’s defense mechanism against diseases and prevents us from getting sick. Inflammation, on the other hand, can bring bad news too when it becomes chronic. Conditions and unnecessary weight gain are a result of chronic inflammation.
Are Pecans Good for Inflammation?
Lack of exercise and stress can result in chronic inflammation. Here, the immune system releases chemicals meant to fight off invaders such as bacteria and viruses, even when foreign invaders to fight off are not there. Anti-inflammatory foods such as pecans help reduce low-grade chronic inflammation, which is a public health concern.
The Anti-inflammatory Effect of Pecans
According to the Department of Nutrition, Lona Linda University, California, on a study done in 2011, pecans significantly boosted the antioxidant level in the blood in about 24 hours after consumption. Antioxidants such as flavonoids, phenols reduce the inflammation rates significantly and also reduce certain diseases such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, and allergies. Vitamin E, found in the nuts, also mitigates the effects of chronic inflammation. The nuts also have magnesium, which has anti-inflammatory effects.
Other Health Benefits of Pecans
This forest tree in the U.S. has a range of benefits apart from the anti-inflammatory effect. The pecans are enjoyed raw, roasted, candied. It can also be put in desserts or your favorite smoothie. Some of the benefits of pecans include:
1. Boosts the body’s immune system
Pecan nuts are a source of healthy fats and also quality protein, which is essential for boosting immunity. When you eat about a one-ounce serving of pecans, approximately 20 halves, you get 2.6 g of protein, about 4 g of carbs. You also get many vitamins and minerals such as riboflavin, which is essential for the healthy growth of cells and function, and even vitamin A, which keeps the body free from common cold and flu. The fiber in pecans also cleans the gastrointestinal system, thus facilitating regular movements of the bowel. Pecans are a great source of manganese (one ounce provides 63% of your recommended daily intake) and copper (one ounce contains 12% of your daily intake) (Self Nutrition Data, 2015).
2. Aid in weight loss
Are foods high in fat content mostly associated with weight gain, right? Well, this is false when it comes to pecan. Several studies have shown that eating nuts don't promote weight gain. They contain dietary fiber, which makes you have the feeling of satiety, thus making you avoid overeating food, which can cause weight gain. Eating nuts also helps you reduce or replace your intake of unhealthy processed foods, which promotes not only weight gain but also diseases.
3. Healthy for the heart
You should consider pecan nuts as an integral part of daily nutrition because it promotes the health of the heart. They contain oleic acid, which is a monounsaturated fat that lowers the risk of ‘bad’ cholesterol (LDL) oxidation while increasing HDL, which is the good cholesterol in the body. This, in turn, reduces the risk of heart disease, and hypertension which are common killer diseases.
4. Improves brain function
Pecans also lower the oxidative stress in the brain. Niacin found in the nuts boosts brain function. Manganese, also found in the nuts, helps stabilize the brain's synaptic process. Copper and Thiamine helps reduce radical damage to the brain.
To sum up, it's better to note that inflammation can either be good or bad for your health, depending on the situation. Thus take note of some foods that cause inflammation in the body. Foods such as Trans fats (artificial), refined carbs, excessive alcohol raise inflammation levels, which may lead to disease.
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