Answered: What is The Healthiest Nut and Seed To Eat?

By on January 31, 2018
flaxseeds in a small serving bowl with a wooden spoon and a side of flaxseed oil

Wow, after all this time I have been wondering what the healthiest nuts and seeds are, I have finally taken the time to do my own research to find out. I have always been conscious of eating the best and healthiest foods so for that reason I very rarely trust my health in the hands of others and would rather do the research myself.

 

I wanted to share it on the health body blog because I also wanted to share my findings with everyone who’s interested in knowing the same thing. Allow me to save you the time because I have shared all of my data collected below.

 

My research has been conducted using the USDA, which I believe at this time is the best source to find out nutritional information.

 

And please if you have found this piece interesting and informative please share it with as many people as you know that would also appreciate knowing this information.

 

Enjoy and if you want to know tasty ways to incorporate more of these amazingly healthy nuts and seeds come check out my newest recipe book called The Healthy Body Way. It’s full of quick, easy, and delicious recipes of some of the healthiest, anti-inflammatory, and energizing foods you can eat.

Nutritional Information Table For Nuts and Seeds

 

WalnutsMacadamia NutsBrazil Nuts CashewsAlmonds
Calories 654718656553 576
Total Fat65g76g66g44g49g
Saturated Fat6g12g15g8g3.7g
Polyunsaturated Fat47g1.5g21g8g12g
Monounsaturated Fat9g59g25g24g31g
Total Carbs14g14g12g30g22g
Dietary Fiber7g9g8g3.3g12g
Sugar2.6g4.6g2.3g6g3.9g
Protein 15g8g14g18g21g
Potassium 12%10%18%18%20%
Magnesium 39%32%94%73%67%
Vitamin B-625%15%5%20%5%
Iron 16%20%13%37%20%
Vitamin C2%2%1%0%0%
Calcium 9%8%16%3%26%
Vitamin A 0%0%0%0%0%
Omega 3 Fats9.2g0.3%0.1%0.5%0%
Omega 6 Fats 38.5 g1.6g24g8.6g14.5g
Omega 6:3 Ratio 4:16:3125:1

 

PecansHazelnutsPistachio NutsPeanutsPine Nuts
Calories 690628562567673
Total Fat72g61g45g49g68g
Saturated Fat6g4.5g6g7g4.9g
Polyunsaturated Fat22g8g14g16g34g
Monounsaturated Fat41g46g24g24g19g
Total Carbs14g17g28g16g13g
Dietary Fiber10g10g10g9g3.7g
Sugar4g4.3g8g4g3.6g
Protein 9g15g20g26g14g
Potassium 11%19%29%20%17%
Magnesium 30%40%30%42%62%
Vitamin B-610%30%85%15%5%
Iron 13%26%21%25%30%
Vitamin C1%10%9%0%1%
Calcium 7%11%10%9%1%
Vitamin A 0%0%8%0%0%
Omega 3 Fats1g0.1%0.5%0g0.2%
Omega 6 Fats 22.8g 9g13.6g  16g38.6g
Omega 6:3 Ratio 23:190:114:139:1

Pumpkin SeedsSunflower SeedsFlax SeedsChia SeedsHemp SeedsSesame Seeds
Calories 446584534486553573
Total Fat19g51g42g31g49g50g
Saturated Fat3.7g4.5g3.7g3.3g4.6g7g
Polyunsaturated Fat9g23g29g24g38g22g
Monounsaturated Fat6g19g8g2.3g5.4g19g
Total Carbs54g20g29g42g8.7g23g
Dietary Fiber18g9g27g34g4g12g
Sugar2.6g1.6g1.5g0.3g
Protein 19g21g18g17g 32g18g
Potassium 26%18%23%11%26%13%
Magnesium 65%81%98%83%175%87%
Vitamin B-60%65%25%30%40%
Iron 18%29%31%42%44%81%
Vitamin C0%2%1%2%1%0%
Calcium 5%7%25%63%7%97%
Vitamin A 1%1%0%0%0%0%
Omega 3 Fats0.35g0.4%6.4g (54%)58%17.4%0.35g
Omega 6 Fats 30.7g41%1.4g (14%)19%57.5%25g
Omega 6:3 Ratio 88:1102:10.2:10.3:13:171:1

The Healthiest Nuts and Seeds:

From the information I have gathered this is the summary of it all:

 

Best Anti-Inflammatory Nut and Seed:

  1. Flax Seeds
  2. Chia Seeds
  3. Hemp Seeds
  4. Walnuts
  5. Macadamia Nuts

Healthiest Nuts and Seed:

  1. Flax Seeds
  2. Chia Seeds
  3. Hemp Seeds
  4. Walnuts
  5. Macadamia Nuts
  6. Brazil nuts contain higher levels of omega 6, which may cause inflammation in excess, however, Brazil nuts also contain loads of Selenium, which is super good for you.

Nuts and Seeds Lowest in Sugar: 

  1. Sesame Seeds
  2. Flax Seeds
  3. Hemp Seeds
  4. Brazil Nuts
  5. Walnuts
  6. Sunflower Seeds

Nuts and Seeds lowest in Calories: 

  1. Pumpkin seeds
  2. Chia Seeds
  3. Cashews
  4. Almonds
  5. Pistachio Nuts

Nuts and Seeds Lowest in Carbs: 

  1. Flax Seeds
  2. Hemp Seeds
  3. Chia Seeds
  4. Sesame Seeds
  5. Sunflower seeds
  6. Pecans
  7. Brazil nuts
  8. Macadamia nuts
  9. Walnuts
  10. Hazelnuts
  11. Almonds
  12. Pine nuts

 

 

Bottom line:

Most nuts and seeds are relatively balanced in their nutritional profile just be aware that macadamia nuts are highest in calorie. Most nuts are high in omega 6 fatty acids, which in excess may cause inflammation. In a standard American diet, your goal would be to reduce the amount of omega 6 fats you’re consuming, and for this reason, I would recommend sticking to the nuts and seeds, which are the lowest in omega 6’s or have the best omega fat ratio. These nuts and seeds are flax seeds, chia seeds, hemp seeds, walnuts, and macadamia nuts. If you follow a whole food plant-based diet or paleo diet, then you’re body will be balanced enough I imagine consuming an ounce or two of nuts per day no matter which ones!

If you’re like me, then I would recommend adding more flax seeds, chia seeds, hemp seeds, walnuts, and macadamia nuts into your diet. The easiest way would be to add flaxseeds or chia seeds to your warming porridge or your green smoothie bowl. I would also sprinkle some over your delicious lunch salad and practice baking with them as well. Additionally, I would snack on a chia seed pudding or enjoy a handful of walnuts or macadamia nuts!

So many amazing delicious options. I’m starting to get super excited!

I hope you enjoyed this article and if you have any questions please message me anytime!

 

About Elizabeth Marks

Having been overweight and unhealthy her whole childhood, Elizabeth turned things around 6 years ago and hasn't looked back. Her passion for health and weight loss is only second to her immense knowledge and creativity for delicious low calorie cooking. A Marathon runner, Entrepreneur, Soccer Lover and fan of all things Diamond.