3 Unexpected Health Benefits Of Brazil Nuts

3 Unexpected Health Benefits Of Brazil Nuts

October 5, 2019 16 By Ewald Bahringer


3 Health Benefits Of Brazil Nuts Native to the South American countries of
Brazil, Bolivia and Peru, the Brazil nut is a type of tree nut which is celebrated for
both its distinct texture and flavour as well as the myriad of ways it can benefit your
health. Unless you’re already a major fitness junkie
(or a resident of one of these South American countries), chances are Brazil nuts might
not be something you’d consider to be a part of your everyday diet. Today, the writers at Bestie are hoping to
change that by giving you all the information you need on the nutritional value and health
benefits of Brazil nuts. If this is the kind of content you go “nuts”
for, be sure to click on the subscribe button and ring the notification bell in order to
stay up to date on our daily videos and content. Vitamins, Minerals and Other Nutrients
One of the most significant aspects of the Brazil nut is the fact that it’s incredibly
rich in terms of energy and densely packed with a high concentration of healthy nutrients. While the exact amount of nutritional value
can vary depending on factors such as where the nuts were grown, Brazil nuts are a significant
source of important vitamins and minerals such as copper, magnesium, phosphorus, manganese,
zinc, thiamine and vitamin E, as well as a moderate source of nutrients such as protein
and fiber. Additionally, Brazil nuts are a rich source
of healthy fats such as polyunsaturated fatty acids. These fatty acids make up roughly 36 percent
of a Brazil nut’s fat content, and can make a significant positive contribution towards
maintaining a healthy heart. Perhaps one of the most noteworthy aspects
of the Brazil nut, however, is its incredibly high selenium content. In fact, the amount of selenium found in a
single Brazil nut can contain nearly double the amount of your recommended daily intake! For those of you scratching your heads and
asking yourselves “selenium? What’s that?” let us explain: selenium is an important mineral
which can provide a number of important health benefits, including acting as an antioxidant,
preventing heart disease, boosting your body’s immune system and even reducing the risk of
certain cancers. While actual symptoms of selenium deficiency
are a relatively rare occurrence, many parts of the world have reported insufficient selenium
intake among the population, especially in places such as the United Kingdom, Europe,
and the Middle East. With this in mind, Brazil nuts can be an effective
way to maintain a healthy daily intake of the mineral selenium, especially considering
one Brazil nut is more than enough to get your recommended daily dose. According to one study, 60 ate two Brazil
nuts each every day; the result was that the selenium intake among participants was just
as effective as it would have been if they took a selenium supplement instead. In summary, the incredibly dense selenium
content of Brazil nuts alone makes them an incredibly beneficial addition to anyone’s
daily diet. 2. Brazil Nuts are Good for your Thyroid
For those not in the know, the thyroid is a small gland located inside your throat which
is responsible for the production of certain hormones; these hormones perform a number
of important functions within your body, including metabolism, regulating body temperature, and
assisting with your body’s throat. Perhaps more than any other part of your body,
selenium intake is incredibly important to the function of your thyroid; this is because
your thyroid uses selenium to produce a hormone known as T3 as well as proteins which help
protect your thyroid against potential damage. In fact, thyroid tissue contains a higher
concentration of selenium than any other part of your body for this very reason. If you’re not meeting your recommended daily
intake of selenium, this can potentially lead to your thyroid developing cellular damage,
reduced hormone production, and certain types of autoimmune disorders that directly target
your thyroid. One of such autoimmune disorders is Hashimoto’s
thyroiditis, a particularly nasty thyroid disorder which gradually destroys your thyroid
tissue. This can potentially lead to other harmful
complications such as hyperthyroidism, which can in turn result in symptoms such as fatigue,
slow metabolism, weight gain and a noticeable drop in body temperature that causes you to
feel cold. Another disorder which affects the thyroid
is Graves’ disease, which occurs when your thyroid produces too much hormone at once. This can lead to harmful and unpleasant symptoms
such as bulging eyes, dramatic weight loss, as well as weakness and difficulty sleeping. According to Matthew Thorpe of Healthline,
12 percent of people can expect to experience an abnormal thyroid condition at some point
in their lives, with women being 8 times more likely to develop a thyroid-related disorder
than men. While studies are currently inconclusive,
there is research that indicates a proper intake of selenium is potentially enough to
stave off the effects of these thyroid conditions. However, more research is required in order
to gain a more complete picture on just how effective selenium is in this regard. Nevertheless, the evidence that we do currently
have does appear to indicate that a Brazil nut a day might keep the thyroid doctor away. At the very least, it’s worth your consideration. 3. Brazil Nuts Help Your Heart and Brain
As we mentioned before, Brazil nuts are a rich source of polyunsaturated fats, as well
as important minerals, antioxidants and dietary fiber. All of these are important nutrients that
can potentially help to reduce the risk of heart disease. According to the results of one study, the
selenium content in Brazil nuts may also increase your body’s levels of HDL cholesterol, otherwise
known as “good cholesterol”, while another study indicated that Brazil nuts might also
lower your body’s LDL or “bad cholesterol” levels as well as triglycerides. In addition to potentially improving your
heart health, the high selenium content in Brazil nuts may also have a positive impact
on your brain. In addition to selenium, Brazil nuts also
contain ellagic acid, which serves as both an antioxidant as well as an anti-inflammatory
agent that may not only protect your brain but also provide affects akin to an antidepressant. Studies indicate that older adults who eat
Brazil nuts on a regular basis may exhibit better mental function as well as heightened
verbal fluency. By contrast, lower levels of selenium intake
has been linked to neurological conditions such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. Research has also seemed to imply that selenium
might not just impact your brain’s health, but your mood as well, though studies into
the mood-elevating effects of selenium are still fairly limited at this time of writing. Of course, before you start eating Brazil
nuts for three meals a day, you should know there are some potential health risks related
to Brazil nuts as well, especially if you’re eating too many. Increasing your selenium intake by too much
can potentially lead to selenium toxicity, otherwise known as selenosis. Selenosis can lead to a number of detrimental
symptoms and side effects, including difficulty breathing, kidney failure and even heart attacks. Additionally, research has also noted that
too much selenium in your system can possibly lead to other complications as well, such
as an increased risk of diabetes as well as certain forms of cancer. However, this research is primarily related
to the selenium content in supplements as opposed to the amount of selenium found in
Brazil nuts, and cultures in South America with selenium-enriched diets don’t appear
to show any negative symptoms or effects linked to selenium toxicity. Nevertheless, the fact that too much selenium
intake can potentially lead to negative health effects means that Brazil nuts are one type
of food you should probably try to enjoy in moderation. To summarize: while they might not be the
most popular or readily-available nut for some, Brazil nuts are worth adding to your
diet due to the high nutritional value that they bring to the table. In addition to being a decent source of other
vitamins and minerals, Brazil nuts are an incredibly dense source of selenium, which
not only helps your thyroid, but also your heart, brain and other aspects of your body
as well. Just make sure not to go overboard on your
serving sizes, and you should be good to go. Did you find this video informative or interesting? If so, be sure to check out our other videos
on health and nutrition. For example, we’ve already made an entire
video devoted to the importance of selenium, so if you’d like to know more about this
mineral as well as some other potential food sources you can get it from, be sure to give
that one a watch as well. And as always, we value the feedback we receive
from people who watch our videos, so be sure to leave a comment below in order to help
us keep the conversation going.