These smooth textured, mild flavoured nuts are without doubt one of my favourites. They can be used in a variety of recipes and in my opinion, their nutritional profile trumps that of most other nuts.
Macadamia nuts have been shown to reduce LDL cholesterol (the bad cholesterol)1, oxidative stress, inflammation and thrombosis2. All of this despite having a higher fat content than most nuts…just another example of how increased intake of fat doesn’t necessarily mean increased body fat; choose your fats wisely.
These creamy nuts also provide a range of benefits such as iron, necessary for the immune system and cognitive development3, monounsaturated fats, suggested to help lower risk of cardiovascular disease4, and thiamin (or vitamin B1), which benefits metabolism and brain function5.
In my previous post, I outlined why I don’t frequently eat large amounts of nuts. An issue I have with nuts are their high levels of omega 6 fatty acids. As I have some inflammation in my body from various ailments, it is important to balance my intake of omega 3 and omega 6 as equally as possible in the hope of reducing the inflammation. However, macadamia nuts have a favourable balance of omega 3:omega 6; a lower ratio has been shown to suppress inflammation6, making them an optimal choice.
Following a ketogenic diet, I keep an eye on my carb intake. As macadamia nuts have only 5g net carbs per 100g, they are better suited to me.
Tips for buying, eating and storing macadamia nuts:
- Choose organic
When buying nuts you want to buy the highest quality possible to limit mould and toxin consumption.
- Buy in bulk
This is often the best way to save money when buying nuts as chain health food shops and supermarkets can add a huge mark up to their small bags.
- Portion control
If you do buy in bulk, try to resist the urge of splitting open the bag and diving straight in. It’s easy to lose sight of how much you’re eating when you have a 2.5 kg nuts in front of you. I made this mistake with my first bulk order and was left with a foggy brain, headaches and a bloated stomach.
- Shop around
It’s worth scouring the internet and comparing prices offered by various websites. Try your local, independent health food shop, they often have lower prices on many items.
- Get in an arm workout and crack them yourself
As macadamia nuts can go rancid easily due to their high content of unstable fats, ideally you want to buy them in the shell and crack them at home. However, you might not fancy this after ‘arm-day’ at the gym. Their shell cannot be cracked with your typical nut cracker, so you will have to invest in a super-strength one which can be found online.
- Store in a cool, dark place
Macadamia nuts in their shells are less likely to go rancid than those exposed. But, both shelled and unshelled should be kept in airtight containers, in a dark, cool place. Typically, I store them in the fridge but you can also store them in the freezer.