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Nuts — can you eat too many?
Friday, 25 September · 2 min read

Packed with protein, fibre and key minerals like zinc and magnesium, it's unsurprising that the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends nuts as part of a healthy daily diet.

But before you reach for a large handful, bear one thing in mind: eating too many nuts can lead to weight gain.

That's because they're high in calories and packed with fats – as much as 80% of a nut can be fat. Fortunatley, most of these fats are good for the body.

Walnuts, almonds, pistachios and pecans contain 'good' unsaturated fat that can help lower your blood cholesterol levels. However, Brazil nuts, cashews and macadamia nuts are higher in 'bad' saturated fats that can raise cholesterol if eaten in high amounts.

Nuts can form part of a healthy, balanced diet, but you should limit your portion sizes to 1 serving — or 30g — of nuts per day. This is about a handful of nuts, or:

  • 10 brazils
  • 30 almonds
  • 20 hazelnuts
  • 15 pecans
  • 30 pistachios
  • 10 walnuts

Try to eat a variety of different nuts to get the full range of nutrients. but avoid those with added salt, sugar or other flavourings, when possible. Instead, focus on eating plain, raw or toasted nuts.

Nut allergies are common. If you eat nuts and have an allergic reaction, see a doctor.

Quote of the day

Came from a plant, eat it; was made in a plant, don’t.

Michael Pollan, author

Quick Quiz
True or false: Eating nuts regularly can lead to weight gain