Do you like walnuts? I love them! When they’re fresh they have a lovely sweet nutty flavour, but because of their high oil content they tend to ‘go off’ easily and develop a bitter taste. The best way to avoid this is to buy walnuts from a retailer with a high turnover so that they haven’t sat too long on the shelf, then keep them in the fridge to keep them fresh. I like to buy my walnuts from the Nut Stall in Sheffield Moor Market which has a great array of nuts, seeds and dried fruit, and they’re also available in most supermarkets, and of course in health shops.
So what are the nutritional benefits of walnuts? Well the oil content that I mentioned is high in ‘essential fatty acids’ including omega 6, but also the vital omega 3. Walnuts also have plenty of protein and make an ideal healthy snack. You only need a few as they are very satisfying. I pop a little pot of walnuts in my bag when I know I’m going to need a nutritional boost to keep me going during a long day. Walnuts are also great just roughly chopped and added to salads for additional taste, texture and nutrition! Here’s a lovely fish recipe to help you incorporate more walnuts into your healthy diet.
Walnut- crusted baked salmon
This is a really easy recipe! Just grind up some walnuts with some fresh herbs such as chives in a coffee grinder or using a pestle and mortar, and spread the nut paste thinly on salmon filet portions. You just bake the salmon in a medium oven for 20 minutes or so and the walnuts form a lovely crust which really complements the taste of the salmon.
So I hope I’ve converted you to the benefits and pleasure of eating walnut! Walnuts are just one of many foods that contain ‘essential fatty acids.’ Getting the balance of omega 6 and omega 3 fatty acids in your diet can be vital for helping with a range of health conditions as these fatty acids help control inflammation in the body, and omega 3 has an important role in brain and cardio-vascular health. Omega 3s are also needed for fertility and pregnancy. If you would like to know more about the nutrition benefits of different foods and how to use them to improve your health, then do come to see me at The Treatment Space in Sheffield, for expert personalised nutrition advice.
Penny Dembo (Nutritional Therapist)