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ALMONDS (Prunus amygdalus)

 

Almonds

Almonds are a dry fruit (not a nut) useful for convalescence, coughs and colds, strengthening the nervous system and increasing sexual vitality. Almonds are high in monounsaturated fats, the same type of health-promoting fats as are found in olive oil, which have been associated with reduced risk of heart disease. Externally, sweet almond oil and pastes made from the crushed nuts can help dry skin conditions and a scrub made from crushed almond stones can treat acne.

Almonds ability to reduce heart disease risk may also be partly due to the antioxidant action of the vitamin E found in them, (LDL is the form of cholesterol that has been linked to atherosclerosis and heart disease. When almonds are substituted for more traditional fats in human feeding trials, LDL cholesterol can be reduced from eight to 12%.

Almond milk is a good alternative to those that have an intolerance to cow's milk.

In addition to healthy fats and vitamin E, a handful of almonds contains almost 98 mg of magnesium plus 257 mg of potassium.  Almonds promote cardiovascular health by providing 257 mg of potassium and only 0.3 mg of sodium, making almonds an especially good choice to in protecting against high blood pressure and atherosclerosis. They are also a good source of copper.

NOTE: Bitter almonds (as opposed to “sweet” almonds) are full of cyanide. Before consumption, bitter almonds must be processed to remove this poison. The apricot stone has a similar flavour and poison content. Heating destroys the poison and all almonds sold are now heat-treated to remove traces of poison and bacteria.

NOTE: Avoid almonds if suffering from osteoporosis.

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