(NaturalNews) Despite the name, pine nuts are actually not nuts at all but the seeds of the pine cone. They have been a popular source of nutrition since paleolithic times and are used to add the delicious flavor and texture to pesto sauce.
The following are six amazing health benefits associated with pine nuts.
Pine nuts are a rich source of pinoleic acid, which is a fatty acid that scientific research has proven to be an appetite suppressant. It works by causing your body to release the hormones cholecystokinin (CCK) and glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1), which are hormones known to keep hunger at bay.
Pine nuts are an excellent source of monosaturated fat, which is known to decrease the levels of cholesterol in our blood stream, which in turn lowers our risk of heart attack and stroke. They also contain high amounts of vitamin E, vitamin K, copper, iron and manganese, which are all known to contribute to cardiovascular health.
High in iron
Pine nuts are rich in iron, which the body uses for a great many of its essential processes, such as the regulation of our central nervous system and the circulation of blood throughout our bodies. The copper that is naturally present in pine nuts also aids in the absorption of iron by our body.
Another of the many benefits of the pine nut is its ability to slow down the aging process. It does this as a result of the high antioxidant content which protects the body against the damage done by free radicals.
Free radicals are molecules that are produced either when our body breaks down food or when we are exposed to harmful environmental hazards such as tobacco smoke or radiation. They can damage cells and may play a role in heart disease and cancer as well as accelerating the aging process.
Copper is also present in pine nuts and is also known to help prevent aging.
Pine nuts also contain lutein, which helps our eyes to filter UV light, preventing it from damaging the macula, which is the region of the retina responsible for central vision. Macular degeneration increases with age, and lutein helps prevent our sight from deteriorating.
Also present in pine nuts is beta-carotene, which the human body converts into vitamin A, which is very good for the overall health of our eyes.
Pine nuts are also a great means to boosting our energy levels. They contain protein that our body requires to repair and build tissues. Unlike the quick fix energy drinks so popular today, protein is a slow burning fuel that gives us long-lasting energy that does not result in burnout.
The magnesium present in pine nuts also helps to improve our bodies' use of oxygen to burn calories and increase our energy levels. Sources for this article include:
About the author: Sofiya has written articles on most health-related topics, including traditional medicine, alternative and naturopathic and natural treatments, wellness, medical marijuana, diets and fitness.