Nutrition in a Nutshell
Although pecans are typically associated with the holidays or fancy candy dishes, thereâ€™s no need to wait until the holidays to savor the crunchy texture and satisfying flavor of pecans. Pecans are packed with so much nutrition, they should be enjoyed all year long!
Lower cholesterol with pecans.
Two recently published studies on pecans (one at Loma Linda University and the other at New Mexico State University) has shown that blood cholesterol levels are dramatically lowered when pecans are incorporated into the diet. Researches say that it is the unsaturated fats in pecans that help lower cholesterol levels. Pecans also contain plant components with antioxidant properties, which can slow the oxidation or "rusting" of LDL (bad) cholesterol. University of Georgia research has confirmed that pecans also contain plant sterols, which have been in the news recently for their cholesterol-lowering ability. (three new links)
NUTrition from A to Zinc.
Pecans add undeniable zest and flavor to any meal, as well as nutritional benefits. Pecans contain over 19 vitamins and minerals â€“ including vitamin A, vitamin E, folic acid, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, several B vitamins and zinc.
Be strong. Live long. Eat pecans.
Just one ounce of pecans (a small handful or about 15 halves) has more zinc an important nutrient for proper growth and strong immunity than a 3.5-ounce piece of skinless chicken. Most good sources of zinc are foods of animal origin, but pecans happen to be a plant-based source.
The skinny on fat.
Over half the fat (about 60 percent) found in pecans is monounsaturated fat and approximately another 30 percent is polyunsaturated fat. This means that almost 90 percent of the fats (oils) in pecans are heart-healthy!
Go Greek. It's good for you.
Olive oil, a staple of the heart-healthy "Mediterranean diet," contains a type of monounsaturated fat known as oleic acid. But consider this: the standard serving of pecans (about one ounce or 30 grams) provides approximately 25-30 percent more of this beneficial fat than a standard serving of olive oil (one tablespoon).
Protection against diseases? Fight them with two phytochemicals and pecans.
Numerous studies have shown that phytochemicals like those found in pecans act like antioxidants that may have a protective effect against certain diseases, such as various cancers and heart disease.
The power of protein.
Pecans belong to the protein group in the USD Food Guide Pyramid, along with meat, poultry, fish, eggs and dried beans â€“ making pecans a nutritious alternative for vegetarians and those striving to eat a more plant-based diet. (Of course, anyone can enjoy the goodness and great taste of pecans!)
Fiber is fabulous.
To increase fiber intake, just add pecans to the diet. One ounce of pecans has about the same amount of fiber as a medium-sized apple, and provides 10 percent of the recommended Daily Value for fiber.
Pecans are cholesterol-free and naturally sodium-free, making them an excellent choice for those on a salt- or sodium-restricted diet.
Pecans are so good and so good for you. Eat pecans every dayâ€¦and your body will thank you for it!