6 Secret Nutritional Benefits of Eating Walnuts

You’re wondering if walnut is a “good” fruit? You want to know more about this awesome nut, its nutritive facts and how to use it? Then, keep on reading this article!

Have you ever notice that a walnut looks like a human brain? Well, that actually may not be just a coincidence! 

Indeed, walnuts are known as a food that support your brain and heart health. They are immensely rich in nutrition and make it a go-to fruit! Check the article on the 7 brain foods to boost your memory and focus to know all of them. 

With this article, you’ll know everything about walnuts, from where it’s originated, on how the fruit is composed and of course, the top health benefits! So, with no further do, let’s start!

Focus on Walnuts: Facts & Origins

Walnut tree, originate from North of India and Caspian Sea region, have been cultivated for centuries. They are among the oldest tree foods grown by man! Initially, “nuts” were designating the category of dried fruits, from several trees. However, now the meaning of this word changed by the one you all know today: the fruit from the walnut tree.

The walnut tree has been introduced in Europe by Romans, which considered it as a sacred tree thanks to its long life: it could survive many generations! Greek also really appreciated the walnut tree because they were in love with nut oil.

1001 Ways to Use the Walnut Tree

This sacred tree actually always was an important tree, especially in rural areas. Every part of the tree was used:

  • The nourishing walnuts were eaten during winter when there were less food
  • The oil was used either for food or for lights
  • The leaves were a major ingredient for medicine
  • The walnut stain was and still is used to create liquors and aromatized wine
  • Finally, the walnut hull could be transformed into dyeing for woodworkers

Most Popular Varieties of the Walnut Tree

Many varieties of walnut tree exist, the most common are the European and the American ones. Let’s see the difference between those 2 types:

1- The “Juglans Regia” comes from South East Europe and West Asia and it can be up to 25 meters high and live to 300 to 400 years! Quite impressive 🙂 Main producer of this variety were England, which basically imported it everywhere in Europe. Now, this has changed: the Junglas Regia is produced in America, Turkey, China, Romania, Iran, and France.

2- The “Juglans Nigra”, also called black walnut, and the “Juglans Cinerea”, also called white walnut, both come from North America. Black walnut tree is a magnificent tree which can be up to 40 meters. Its bark is really dark and cracked. The walnut is really tasty, however don’t try to break its hull  bare hands because it’s almost impossible!

Walnut 101

A walnut is composed of several parts:

  • The kernel, which is the edible part, that should be withish when it’s ripen. It looks like a little human brain.
  • The hull that is hard with a rounded shape
  • Finally, the stain is covering the hull. It’s green, smooth and sticky.

Now that you know everything about walnuts, let’s check the nutrition fact of this awesome fruit!

Walnuts Nutrition Facts

For 50g of walnuts, you have:

  • Water: 3,6%
  • Proteins: 7,2g
  • Fats: 31g
  • Carbs: 9,2g
  • Fibers: 2,4g

Note that 86% of the fats are unsaturated fatty acids, which is the “good” type of fat.

That’s not all! Walnuts are a very nutritious fruit, which:

  • Are an excellent source of copper and magnesium
  • Are full of potassium, vitamin B6, folic acid and thiamine
  • Contain phosphorus, iron and pantothenic acid
  • Have lots of fibers  
  • Is the whole food with the highest content in omega-3 ALA of all edible plants

Top Health Benefits of Walnuts

Tips to Buy, Store, and Cook Walnuts

Be careful when you buy walnuts as they will quickly deteriorate when they are exposed to humidity, heat, air, and light. If you buy the walnut in shell, choose the ones which seem heavy and full. Usually, you’ll buy the walnut kernels. Then, they should be brittle and not soft. Note that the walnuts sold in vacuum glass jars are the best as they will be fresher!

To store walnuts, prefer a sealed container  at room temperature, away from heat sources and under standard humidity conditions. In their shells, you can keep them for 2 to 3 months. You can also put walnuts kernels in your fridge for about 6 months or 1 year in your freezer!

You can either eat walnuts fresh, grilled or cooked. For example,

  • Whole and fresh walnuts are ideal for morning or afternoon snacks
  • You can add them to your desserts such as muffins, brownies or cakes
  • Add some to your oriental meals
  • Crushed some into your sauce for pasta or sandwiches
  • Don’t forget that walnut oil is perfect for your salad dressings, as it’s more flavourful than olive oil

For some inspiration on how to use walnuts for brain power smoothies, try these incredible recipes below. Don’t forget to tag us on Instagram or comment in the section below if you try them 🙂  

3 Amazing Smoothie Recipes Perfect to Boost Your Energy

Walnut Brownie Breakfast Smoothie

This vegan and dairy free smoothie is so good that it's hard to believe it's good for your health. It's the perfect breakfast to cheer you up and boost your energy level!

Prep Time5 mins
Ingredients
 1.50 cups almond milk (or milk of choice), add more if you prefer a runnier smoothie
  cup walnuts, or about 20g
 ¼ of an avocado
 2 tsp chia seeds
 2 tsp maple or rice malt syrup, or sweetener of choice
 1 tsp maca powder (optional)
 1 tsp raw cacao nibs
 ¼ tsp cinnamon
 of vanilla powder
 salt

Ingredients

Ingredients
 1.50 cups almond milk (or milk of choice), add more if you prefer a runnier smoothie
  cup walnuts, or about 20g
 ¼ of an avocado
 2 tsp chia seeds
 2 tsp maple or rice malt syrup, or sweetener of choice
 1 tsp maca powder (optional)
 1 tsp raw cacao nibs
 ¼ tsp cinnamon
 of vanilla powder
 salt

Directions

1

This vegan and dairy free smoothie is so good that it's hard to believe it's good for your health. It's the perfect breakfast to cheer you up and boost your energy level!

Walnut Brownie Breakfast Smoothie

Get the recipe here

Banana Nut Smoothie

This smoothie is high in fibers and proteins. It's perfect for a late breakfast or an afternoon snack to raise you up 🙂

Prep Time5 mins
Ingredients
 1 banana
 2 tsp oats
 1 tbsp almond flour
 1 cup skim milk
 2 tsp non-fat greek yogurt
 of cinnamon
 2 tsp chopped walnuts
 1 tsp honey

Ingredients

Ingredients
 1 banana
 2 tsp oats
 1 tbsp almond flour
 1 cup skim milk
 2 tsp non-fat greek yogurt
 of cinnamon
 2 tsp chopped walnuts
 1 tsp honey

Directions

1

This smoothie is high in fibers and proteins. It's perfect for a late breakfast or an afternoon snack to raise you up 🙂

Banana Nut Smoothie

Get the recipe here

Honey and Walnut Spiced Protein Shake

This thick and creamy, slightly spicy shake is loaded with vitamins and proteins. It's the perfect shake for an after workout session.

Prep Time5 mins
Ingredients
 ½ cup low-fat cottage cheese or yogurt
 2 tsp walnuts
 10 ice cubes
  cup cold water
 1 scoop of vanilla protein powder
 1 tsp vanilla extract
 cardamom and coriander

Ingredients

Ingredients
 ½ cup low-fat cottage cheese or yogurt
 2 tsp walnuts
 10 ice cubes
  cup cold water
 1 scoop of vanilla protein powder
 1 tsp vanilla extract
 cardamom and coriander

Directions

1

This thick and creamy, slightly spicy shake is loaded with vitamins and proteins. It's the perfect shake for an after workout session.

Honey and Walnut Spiced Protein Shake

Get the recipe here