Pros and Cons of Eating Brazilian Nuts: Pregnancy Diet Plan
The Brazil nut, also well-known as Bertholettia, is a South American tree which can grow up to 50 metres in height and to 2 meters in diameter. It is well-spread in such countries, as Brazil, Guyana, Peru, Bolivia, Venezuela and Columbia.
Bertholettia can be found near the rivers of the Amazon, Rio Negro, Orinoco. Although the tree is called the Brazil nut the main export is realized in Bolivia (50%). Brazil nuts look like a box with grains inside, that is why many biologists consider that the Brazil nut is a grain.
The diameter of such box is approximately 15 centimeters, the weight – 2 kilograms. Brazil nuts can not been grown purposely as peanut or walnut. They are gathered only from the trees that grow in the jungles.
The wood of Brazilian walnut has an excellent quality but its cutting prohibited by the law in all three producing countries (Brazil, Bolivia and Peru). Illegal cutting of trees and land clearing are the real threat to this species.
Brazil nuts is the food which was given to us by nature, because they are the most healthy products in the world. Despite the growth in South America, they became a popular treat in the whole world. A couple of grains leads to a sense of satiety. But because of the high content calories (high percentage of protein and fat) you should not eat a lot of grains ― this applies primarily to people that want to lose weight.
Regular consumption of Brazil nuts is not only beneficial to the overall condition of the woman’s body, but also helps the body to do one of the main female functions – conceiving, bearing and giving birth to a healthy baby due to the high content of essential substances which are important for cell growth. That is why leading doctors recommend its use before conception and during pregnancy.
Is the Brazil nut really healthy for pregnant women? What vitamins and minerals which necessary during pregnancy does Bertholettia contain? We will review these questions in this article and find out if the Brazil nut is worth eating for pregnant women.
Brazil nuts contain 18% protein, 13% carbohydrates and 69% fat. The grains of the Brazil nut have a plenty of nutrients: phosphates, potassium, zinc, calcium, magnesium, iron, manganese, selenium, cuprum, omega-3 and omega-6, phosphorus, thiamin, choline, flavonoids, niacin, amino acids and vitamins B6, C, D and E.
The caloric content is 682 calories per 100 grams. Due to these health properties the Brazil nut helps to normalize the level of sugar in blood and to reduce cholesterol. Also it is used for improving metabolism and supporting our immune system.
Amino acids is the best solution in losing weight and strengthening the muscle mass. The fiber which contains in grains absorbs toxins, cleanses the digestive system, removes chronic stool from the body and reduces appetite improving the digestion and normalizing metabolic processes.
Scientists consider that high amount of selenium is useful for the cancer prevention. It has antioxidant and anticancer properties. Unsaturated fats or fatty acids protect our cells and reduce the risk of atherosclerosis, cataracts, cardiovascular and nervous diseases.
The oil of Brazil nuts is used in cosmetic industry because of vitamin E which is necessary for keeping the skin tightened, elastic and healthy. Cosmetic companies make a lot of Brazil nut oil-based products for skin, care, face and body.
Often it is added to shampoos and hair conditioners. Also it is used as a lubricant in clocks. Now when you have an idea about connection between brazil nuts and pregnancy let’s speak about benefits that pregnant woman could obtain whilst eating brazil nuts during pregnancy.
If you like to eat on daily basis Brazil nuts, pregnancy period is not the time to stop consuming them. Doctors recommend to include Brazil nuts to the diet of expectant mothers, as this product contains an optimal amount of nutrients and minerals. Pregnant women are recommended to consume the grains of the Brazil nut daily for the entire pregnancy.
In addition to the required nutrients and vitamins Brazil nuts contain omega-6 and omega-3 which we can get only from food, and Brazil nuts contain these nutrients more than in any other food recommended for consumption for pregnant women.
Also Brazil nuts contain arginine which stimulate the normal development of the fetus. But before making Brazil nuts the part of your diet you should consult with your doctor.
There are several ways of eating Brazil nuts in pregnancy:
- raw nuts;
- roasted or salted nuts;
- in the cakes, sweets, snacks and even sauces.
These nuts do not spoil for a long time even if they are stored without the shell, so this product can be taken to long trips, however, long-term storage of Brazil nuts is possible only in cool temperature.
Despite the fact that brazil nuts good for pregnancy there are some side effects that should be taken into account before consumption.
There is some harmful sides of Brazil nuts which we must remember before eating them. Their benefits and harms are studied by specialists, that is why it is possible that we know not all qualities of Brazil nuts.
At first we should note that nuts contain a very small amount of harmful radioactive substances – radium. So this is one of the reasons why we should not abuse them. A couple of grains per day is sufficient for pregnant women, a grain – for children.
Also Brazil nuts’ shells contain aflatoxin which contribute to the development of liver cancer, so there are strict rules for the import of Brazil nuts which are imposed by the European Union.
Shells are previously removed and tested. In addition, there is the high concentration of phytic acid in Brazil nuts which prevents the absorption of some nutrients. The overdose of selenium can cause such negative effects as nausea, dermatitis, hair loss, tooth decay and bad breath.
It is important to note that pregnant women should not eat nuts in the last week of pregnancy and the first two months of feeding a baby. High oil content can cause a severe allergic reaction in a newborn. Subsequently, you can try consulting with your doctor and then eat it in very small quantities (not more than a quarter of a nut).
Nevertheless, Brazil nuts are becoming increasingly famous among the supporters of proper nutrition and connoisseurs of folk medicine. They believe that the beneficial effects of eating exotic grains will be seen quickly, and the negative effects can be avoided by adhering to the recommended daily allowance.
Taking everything into account, the Brazil nut is a unique product and life-giving source for healing, rejuvenation and normalization of the body. If you follow the recommendations of doctors grains of the tree of Bertholettia are absolutely safe, they will help us to flush out toxins from the body, to recover after an illness, improving digestion and lose weight.
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