Do Walnuts and Almonds Help to Burn Fat?

Walnuts and almonds are nutritious snacks that offer proven health benefits. But do they also help you burn fat? The answer is yes and no. You need to know a little about what makes up walnuts and almonds to fully understand their health benefits. Take a closer look at the fats found in walnuts and almonds to discover how they can help you lose weight.

They Suppress Appetite

Eating walnuts and almonds cannot help you burn body fat. You can’t eat an entire bag and expect to watch the pounds melt away. Eating large quantities of any type of nut would likely add pounds to your waistline. However, almonds and walnuts can help you burn away extra fat in between meals. When walnuts and almonds are digested, a chemical reaction happens in your small intestine that signals to your brain that you’re full. Only a small amount of walnuts or almonds are required to send the signal and trigger that full feeling in your stomach.

They Can Lower Cholesterol

Walnuts and almonds contain polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats, also known as the “good” fats. These fats are good because they help lower LDL cholesterol in your blood and deliver two essential fatty acids, omega-3 and omega-6. A recent study done by UC Irvine Pharmacologists found that cells in the small intestine turn the fats, or oleic acid, into a compound known as oleic acid ethanolamide, or OEA. OEA binds to receptors in the small intestine that signal to the brain that you are full. This means you eat less food, and your body can start to burn some of your stored energy instead.

Snack on Almonds and Walnuts

If you currently eat snacks that are high in saturated fat and sugar, you could benefit from eating almonds and walnuts instead. Saturated fat and sugar don't have the same appetite-suppressing qualities that almonds and walnuts have. So your brain doesn't receive the signal to stop eating until you've consumed far more calories than you need. To lose fat, you need to burn more calories than you eat during the day. If you can do that for an extended period of time, you will lose weight. Including walnuts and almonds in your diet can help you eat less food, making it easier to burn fat and maintain a healthy weight.

Tips and Considerations

Any fat, no matter what type, is calorie dense. That means that a small serving walnuts or almonds delivers many calories. For example, a 1-ounce serving of whole almonds packs 175 calories. Even though these nuts are a healthy snack, your body will store the excess calories as fat if you overindulge. You only need a small portion of almonds or walnuts to receive their nutritional benefits. Look up recipes that include small amounts of walnuts or almonds to go along with your favorite dishes.