How to strengthen brainwaves related to cognition, learning, memory and even healing.
Eating nuts regularly strengthens brainwaves related to cognition, learning, memory and even healing, new research finds.
Pistachios were particularly good at boosting the brain’s gamma wave response.
Gamma waves are critical for faster cognitive process, learning, memory and even sleep.
Peanuts, meanwhile, enhanced the brain’s delta response.
The delta response is important for deep sleep, healing and healthy immunity.
Because of their antioxidant content, nuts have already been shown to benefit the heart, reduce inflammation and slow the aging process.
Dr Lee Berk, the study’s first author, said:
“This study provides significant beneficial findings by demonstrating that nuts are as good for your brain as they are for the rest of your body.”
For the research, different people ate six different types of nuts: walnuts, pecans, pistachios, peanuts, cashews and almonds.
Their brain waves were measured using EEG recordings.
All the different types of nuts contain antioxidants, with walnuts containing the highest levels.
The study’s authors write:
“Nuts are a major source of flavonoids.
They are potent antioxidants with known mechanisms that provide cardioprotective, anticarcinogenic, and anti-inflammatory properties.
Studies have shown that absorbed flavonoids penetrate and accumulate in brain hippocampal regions involved in learning and memory.”
Here’s our list of favorite nuts, ranked by their nutrient density. These varieties contain the most protein, fiber, B-vitamins, calcium, minerals, and vitamin E for the least amount of saturated fat:
Almonds. Our “Top Nut” award goes to the almond. Here are the main nutrients in one ounce of almonds (a medium-size handful):
5 grams of protein
14 grams of fat (90 percent unsaturated)
4 grams of fiber (the highest fiber content of any nut or seed), unblanched
80 milligrams of calcium
1.4 milligrams of zinc
1 milligram of iron
6.7 milligrams of vitamin E
some B-vitamins, minerals, and selenium
Filberts, (hazelnuts) because they are high in the amino acid tryptophan, are a good nut for sleep. Almonds and filberts have the most vitamin E (6.7 milligrams per ounce) – nearly 25 percent of the adult recommended dietary allowance.
Sleep Nuts } Eating a small handful of nuts as a before-bedtime snack may help you catch more Z’s. Some nuts and seeds, especially whole filberts and ground sesame seeds, have a high amount of the sleep-inducing amino acid tryptophan.
Walnuts have the greatest concentration of omega-3 fatty acids.
Chestnuts are lowest in fat, containing only about 10 percent as much fat as other nuts. What little fat is in the chestnut (1.3 grams per ounce) is nearly all the unsaturated type. Chestnuts also contain three grams of fiber per ounce, but they are relatively low in protein.
Soybean nuts and peanuts are not really nuts at all. They are legumes, and they come from plants rather than trees. Both are very nutritious. Soybean nuts, while less popular because of their less appealing taste, are actually the most nutritious nut. A quarter cup of soybean nuts contains a similar number of calories to other nuts, yet packs the following nutrients:
17 grams of protein
9 grams of fat (90 percent unsaturated)
3.5 grams of fiber
138 milligrams of folic acid (33 percent of the DV)
116 milligrams of calcium (10 percent of the DV)
2 milligrams of zinc (around 15 percent of the DV)
1.7 milligrams of iron (10 percent of the DV)
19 micrograms of selenium
When purchasing soybean nuts, avoid those that are roasted in “hydrogenated” or “partially hydrogenated” oils.