Are Nuts Good For You Or Is It All A Lie?

March 25, 2014 | 10 Comments

Off the top of my head, I would say that the 3 most overrated foods are:

  • Acai Berries
  • Klondike Bars
  • Any type of nuts (especially almonds)

Many people treat nuts like the holy grail of health food, and just like the acai berry or Klondike Bar, there is a ton of advertising that backs nut products. And with lots of advertising, means overstated claims and potential lies.

So is it true? Are nuts good for you? You know what, I’m just going to come out and say it: nuts are one of the most overrated health foods in the industry and they might actually be sabotaging your weight loss progress.

Are almonds good for you?

Let’s see why:

Nuts don’t really make you feel full

One of the most frequently used phrases used in fitness magazines these days is “Eat a handful of nuts before your meal so you won’t eat so much later on.”

Let me tell something, this does not work. Ever. A real handful of nuts should only be about 150-200 calories depending on the type of nut, but eating 150 calories before your main meal will not cause you eat any less later on. Trust me, it doesn’t work. If anything, you’ll just end up with an extra 150 calories in your body for the day.

I would much rather eat two medium sized apples if I had 150 calories to spare before my main meal. At least apples have a lot of water and fiber, which will make you feel much fuller. Nuts simply don’t fill you up, don’t buy into the hype.

I know saying that nuts don’t make you full is just based on my experience, but have you really ever eaten less at dinner just because you ate a couple of nuts beforehand? Be honest with yourself.

Most people don’t know when to stop eating them

Because nuts are deemed one of the greatest health foods in the industry by practically everyone, most people use this excuse to constantly eat them. And because nuts are so tiny, it can be hard to keep track of how many you eat.

People think “Oh nuts are healthy and natural so it’s okay if I eat a lot of them.” This is a very bad mindset to have and before you know it, that person has downed 500 calories worth of nuts. Just because something is deemed healthy, it doesn’t mean you should overdo it.

Nuts are really high in calories

When trying to lose weight, you’re constantly trying to reduce your calories. But this is hard to do when “healthy foods” such as nuts exist. Gram for gram, nuts contain even more calories than chocolate, and most people think chocolate is unhealthy.

I want you to understand that weight loss is simply a matter of how much you eat. But if that’s the case, then why are you wasting time with nuts. Their are much better options out there.

Will people ever not recommend nuts?

Probably not. Just like the whole 6 meals per day thing, there’s a lot of money to be made with nuts, just ask Planters.

I mean, just a couple months ago, I was reading Men’s Fitness and I counted at least 5 different advertisements for just almonds alone. That’s pretty damn crazy if you ask me.

Also, if a company’s product contains nuts, then that’s a huge selling point for them(e.g. OUR CHOCOLATE COVERED MACADAMIA NUTS ARE A GREAT SOURCE OF OMEGA 3 FATTY ACIDS WHICH ARE SHOWN TO IMPROVE YOUR HEALTH).

It’s already ingrained in many people’s minds that nuts are a great and healthy food, so having nuts in your product is a big selling point.

I’m not saying that nuts are bad for you; if you like to eat them, then eat them. Just make sure you realize that eating nuts doesn’t automatically mean you’re healthy.

What do you think? Are nuts good for you? Let me know in the comments below.

Photo credits: Stuart Pardue

10 Comments - Leave Your Thoughts

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  1. I believe that no food is bad for you. Just as long as you dont over do it.
    Maintain a ow body fat and I think you can eat whatever you want…Even hamburgers and fries
    It works for me anyways…

    1. Joe,
      I’m in the exact same boat as you. I really believe that as long as you watch how much you eat, there is no single food out there that can damage your health.

  2. I LOVE almonds. I stick to raw and sprouted, but I eat around 60grams a day… like 3 or 4 handfuls. Can this be alot of fat? Almonds are the only nuts I really eat on a daily basis. What would be a good limit for me? Thanks!

    1. Hey Ellie,
      There nothing wrong with eating almonds. I love almonds too!
      The problem isn’t that almonds have a lot of fat. The problem is that 3 or 4 handfuls of almonds is about 500 calories, which is a lot. If you’re able to fit those 500 calories into your diet without overeating for the rest of the day, then go for it. Otherwise, you might want to cut back to maybe 1 or 2 handfuls a day.

  3. Before jumping to conclusions about daily caloric intake, I recommend a new book just out called “Wheat Belly”, by William Davis M.D. (cardiologist)
    This book alone is a great guide to how your body really works with the food you give it, primarly wheat based products.

    Read it and judge for yourself.

    1. Red5,
      I have never read Wheat Belly, but to lose weight, eating less calories is the only scientifically proven way to do so. For some people, cutting wheat out can help, but I don’t think it’s necessary if you want to lose weight and get healthy.

  4. To be honest , eating two apples is not better than eating a hand full of nuts before dinner, because apples are low in fat but they are really high in carbohydrates, 150 calories, 56 carbs, 56 sugars. You might as well be drinking a can of pop. the protein in peanuts actually burn twice the amount of calories when you digest them, rather than sugars and carbs,plus on the bright side, peanuts give you plenty of energy and it is proven that they raise your metabolism.

    1. Joey,
      While nuts do have more protein and less carbs, they don’t really do much to help satisfy you. Personally, I still get hungry after eating a handful of nuts. Apples on the other hand contain a lot of water and fiber which help make you feel full. But everyone’s different I guess.

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