Health

15 Health Benefits of Walnuts, According To Science (+8 Delicious Walnut Recipes)

Walnuts are single-seeded and rounded nuts that grow on trees. 

This superfood has numerous health benefits, and not only cures diseases but also helps improve our body function. (1)

Walnut Health Benefits

Here are 15 amazing benefits of walnuts according to science, and 8 delicious walnut recipes you can try.

1. Walnuts Help With Artery Function

Studies and tests have been done and shown that eating at least one serving of walnuts will improve artery function (3).

How this happens is that the walnuts will decrease your cholesterol to around 5% or lower (4).

Walnuts have also been known to improve the endothelial functions that are in the arm (5).

Endothelial dysfunction is the direct response to the risk of cardiovascular disease. When the risk factors of cardiovascular disease is corrected, then the endothelial dysfunction is reversed. (6)

A study was done where walnuts did improve endothelial dysfunction in women and men who had hypercholesterolemia. (7)

Pistachios have also been found to have these types of benefits as well. However, hazelnuts didn’t work out during the study. (8).

Bottom Line: If you eat one serving of walnuts with your breakfast, lunch, or dinner, then you can not only lower your cholesterol but also improve your artery functions. Improving your cholesterol and artery functions will also improve your endothelial functions. This will help decrease the chances of having endothelial dysfunctions.

2. Walnuts Reduce the Risk of Cardiovascular Disease

Eating a least one serving of walnuts can decrease cardiovascular disease around 50% (9).

Walnuts have this plant which is called, n-3 fatty ALA (a-linolenic acid). This plant helps reduce the risk of having cardiovascular disease. (10).

They also have Docosahexaenoic acids and eicosapentaenoic which are found in fatty fish, soy-fed farm animals and poultry which will reduce the risk of this disease (11).

Omega 3’s that are found in walnuts are said to help your heart by protecting it from heart rhythms that are dangerous and that can cause heart attacks. (12)

Bottom Line: Eating not only walnuts but also foods that have DHA and EPA in them will help decrease the risk of cardiovascular disease. Not only that, but also the plant, ALA will help reduce the risk of getting this disease. The omega 3’s in the walnuts can also help prevent heart attacks and heart rhythms that are dangerous to your body.

3. Walnuts Help with Aging

Aging comes with a lot of health risks that show up as we get older. These risks can include physical and mental risks.

The elderly is most at risk for neurodegenerative disorders. These disorders include macular degeneration and dementia (13).

Dementia is broad term that describes a range of symptoms. The most common disease is Alzheimer’s. This type of disease can count for 60 to 80% of people who have dementia. This disease is associated with memory loss and can cause a person to lose their ability to do everyday activities. (14)

Macular degeneration is an eye disease that’s incurable. This type of disease is known to affect more than 10 million Americans. It’s the leading eye disease over every other eye disease that’s known. (15)

A study has been done where patients went on with their regular diet, however they added walnuts. For 2 years they included walnuts in their diet and the results were that having a regular consumption of walnuts delayed age related diseases.(16)

Bottom Line: As we age, more health risks will come upon us. To help slow down these risks, adding walnuts with help decrease and slow down neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s and Macular Degeneration.

4. Walnuts Have Tocopherols That Might Help Men Dealing with Prostate Cancer

Tocopherols are in walnuts. If fact, walnuts are enriched with tocopherols which can possible help older men who might have prostate cancer or is at risk with prostate cancer. (17)

A study was conducted with men that had prostate and vascular health. They added walnuts to their everyday diet for 8 weeks. After the study was completed, the scientist agreed that walnuts could improve biomarkers of vascular and prostate health. (18)

Another study was conducted, men who were diagnosed with prostate cancer ate walnuts five or more times each week. The study showed that these men had a lower chance of dying from prostate cancer than men who didn’t eat walnuts. (19)

Bottom Line: Even when you have biomarkers of prostate and vascular health, changing your diet to include enriched walnuts with tocopherols can possibly help with your risk of having prostate cancer. Even when you have prostate cancer, eating walnuts will decrease your chances of dying.

5. Walnuts Are Linked to Bone Health

Walnuts contain essential fatty acids which means they can increase calcium deposition and absorption. (20)

Not only are they increasing calcium throughout the body, but also reducing urinary calcium through excretion. (21)

Walnuts also contains a supplement called boron. Boron plays a part in bone metabolism and also vitamin D activity. (22)

Copper and manganese are also in walnuts. Copper is an active enzyme that makes connective tissue proteins. Manganese is the synthesis that is connective tissue in bone and cartilage. Manganese in walnuts are also known to help prevent osteoporosis with the help of copper and calcium. (23) (24)

Osteoporosis is when the bones in the body become less dense and thinner. This makes the bones in the body easy to break or fracture. This can happen when the body has a copper deficiency. Walnuts have copper in them which can help the body collect the copper it needs to function and not be put in risk of osteoporosis. (25)

Copper also helps maintain the collagen and elastin. These are the structural components of the body. Without copper, the body can’t damage collagen which are the building blocks of the bones. (26)

Bottom Line: Boron, Copper, Manganese, and EFA (essential fatty acids) are all in Walnuts. These supplements gives us all that we need to help strengthen and protect our bones. Copper deficiency can lead to osteoporosis. Walnuts have plenty of copper in them to help give the body what it needs to protect the bones from osteoporosis. Copper also plays an important part in our bodies. Whether it’s to protect our bones or helps maintain collagen and elastin that are the building blocks for our bones.

6. Walnuts Consumed Can Help Control Your Diabetes

Eating walnuts won’t make you gain a significant amount of weight. (27)

Research has been conducted that at risk adults having diabetes type 2 can cut down that risk by adding walnuts to their everyday diet. (28)

Another study was conducted and the results were shown that walnuts did improve blood vessel functions and also lowered cholesterol levels. (29)

We already knew these results however, bad cholesterol levels and blood vessel functions are some of the risk factors that people have when they have type 2 diabetes. (30)

Bottom Line: If you’re at risk for type 2 diabetes or have type 2 diabetes, walnuts can help control your diabetes and you won’t have to worry about the walnuts making you gain weight. Some of the risk factors with type 2 diabetes are cholesterol levels that are high and blood vessels. Walnuts can help lower the cholesterol levels and the high blood vessels.

7. Walnuts Are Anti-inflammatory

Some adults experience inflammation in their body. It could be painful, annoying, etc. However, what if there was a food that you could eat to help your body not be inflamed anymore or decrease your inflammation?

Walnuts have these compounds in them called polyphenolic. They also have a substance called phytochemical. These compounds and substances can reduce inflammation in the body. (31)

Walnuts also have rare phytonutrients that are called flavonol morin, and tannin tellimagrandin. These also help with the inflammation that’s going on in the body. (32)

Not only does the walnuts help with anti-inflammatory properties, however it can also help with fighting wrinkles. This properties can also help with eczema, acne, and psoriasis. (33)

There are several different nuts that have these properties, however walnuts have the most omega 3’s that can help with these conditions. (34)

Bottom Line: Polyphenolic, phytochemical, flavonol, morin, and tannin tellimagrandin are all in walnuts that help the body decrease inflammation. Not only that, walnuts can also help you fight wrinkles, eczema, psoriasis, and acne. These are because walnuts have the highest omega 3’s in the nut family.

8. Walnuts Have Vitamins and Magnesium

Walnuts surprisingly have a high amount of vitamin E in them. In fact, gamma-tocopherol is the form of vitamin E that presents itself in walnuts. (35)

There have been studies that because of this type of vitamin E found in walnuts, this helps protect heart problems from men on their cardiovascular health. (36)

Vitamin E also helps protect our skin from harmful free radicals that are in nature. (37)

Not only does walnuts have vitamin E, but they also have vitamin B-6, riboflavin, niacin, folate, and pantothenic acid. (38)

.73 milligram of vitamin E is found in walnuts. That’s about 5% of the amount you’re supposed to have every day! (39)

The vitamins that walnuts have are; thiamin, vitamins B12, K, C, E, A, and B6, folate, niacin, riboflavin, and pantothenic acid. (40)

57 milligrams of magnesium is what’s in an ounce of walnuts. 251 milligrams of magnesium is in a cup of walnuts. 315 milligrams is what women need on a daily basis. 410 milligrams is what men need every day. (41)

Magnesium is what the body uses for hundreds of the biochemical reactions that are happening in our bodies. Magnesium also helps maintain muscle and nerve functions. (42)

Bottom Line: Walnuts have numerous vitamins, especially vitamin E. These vitamins help our body with in numerous ways. From protecting our skin to our heart. They also give us important vitamins that our body needs to function. Walnuts also have magnesium that we need on a daily basis. Magnesium helps muscle and nerve functions and uses biochemical reactions.

9. Walnuts Can Help With Sleep

There’s a way to help you fall asleep by adding some walnuts to your diet. Before going to bed, soak some walnuts in water and then eat them.

If you don’t like watery walnuts, you can also just put walnuts in your dinner or put them on top of your dinner as a topping. (43)

The reason why walnuts can help you sleep is this little thing in walnuts called, Melatonin. (44)

Melatonin is a hormone that help regulate and induce sleep. However, this hormone is only available in bio-available walnut form. (45)

Walnuts and cashews have the highest amounts of tryptophan. (46)

Tryptophan is used in the body by changing it to niacin. This is a vitamin B that the body uses to create serotonin. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter which is associated with melatonin and sleep levels. (47)

Bottom Line: There is a hormone that’s called Melatonin. This hormone is only in bio-available walnut form. However, if you add it to your dinner, you can get the sleep that you need and deserve. Walnuts also has the highest amounts of tryptophan. This is a B vitamin that uses serotonin which is with melatonin that helps people get some sleep.

10. Walnuts Can Help Boost Your Mood

We’ve all experienced a time where we were moody and didn’t want to associate with anyone. Even children can become moody and sometimes, it’s not the obvious reasons.

A study has been conducted that sometimes we become moody, annoyed with everything is because we’re lacking omega-3 fatty acids. (48)

Walnuts have omega 3- fatty acids that can help with the moods. (49)

Even children can have walnuts and might improve their mood. Try adding walnuts to children's everyday diet and you might see a difference with their mood changes. (50)

There have even been talk that adults dealing with stress and depression should eat walnuts because it can help with the body battling depression and stress. (51)

Walnuts have 2738 kJ of energy in them. That’s about 25% of energy coming from walnuts and other type of nuts. (52)

For breakfast, I actually eat a bar that contains all types of nuts and proteins to help me start my day. I can tell when I don’t eat my breakfast bar and when I do because of my level of energy.

Bottom Line: Our bodies need Omega 3’s. Walnuts have these and can even help boost your mood. They can also help adults with depression and stress. Children that are having tantrums, etc. can eat walnuts and their moods can improve if their bodies are lacking omega 3’s. Walnuts also have about 25% of energy in them giving you and your children the boost you might need.

11. Walnuts Are Great for Hair

Walnuts have vitamin B7 in it which makes a great hair strengthener! (53)

Not only does walnuts strengthen hair, but it can also reduce hair falling out and help with hair growth. (54)

Because walnuts have these benefits for hair, most hair care products have walnut extracts in them. Such as shampoos and conditioners. (55)

A lot of factors can cause damage to your hair. Lifestyles are crazy, eating habits aren’t great, etc. Adding walnuts into your daily diet can help reverse these problems with your hair. Either consuming them or using walnut oil, shampoo, etc. (56)

We all have a fear of losing our hair. Studies have been conducted and that if you use walnut oil on a daily basis then it can hold balding problems at bay. (57)

Walnut oil can also help with dandruff by keeping the scalp hydrated and moisturized. Because of this, dermatitis isn’t a problem and is kept at bay. Another thing that walnut oil keeps at bay is antifungal infections such as ringworm. If you keep your scalp healthy, you won’t have to worry about infections, dandruff, etc. and will also have healthy hair. (58)

Walnuts can also help with coloring your hair. Because walnuts have proteins in them, they can help with the color of your hair and also accentuate the highlights of the hair. (59)

Bottom Line: Walnut oil and also regular walnuts can strengthen your hair. They can also help keep it shiny and healthy which will lead to less dandruff. This also means that walnut oil can keep antifungal infections and dermatitis away. Walnuts can also keep balding problems away and accentuate the highlights in your hair.

12. Walnuts Can Help Decrease Pancreatic and Ovarian Cancer Risks

A study was conducted and found that women who have consumed walnuts and other nuts decreased the risk of having pancreatic cancer. Walnuts also decrease independent factors that can lead to pancreatic cancer in women. (60)

Women that consumed an ounce of nuts two or more time each week showed that risk of the pancreatic cancer reduced more than the women who didn’t consume walnuts or any type of nut. (61)

A research has shown that women who ate walnuts two or more times had a 35% lower chance of pancreatic cancer. (62)

Not only does the walnuts help decrease pancreatic cancer, but it also helps prevents pseudocysts. Pseudocyst is when the pancreas becomes injured the ducts will start closing and then become blocked. Because of this, a sac becomes filled up with fluid which is how pseudocyst starts. (63) (64)

A study that happened in 2010 showed that women that ate walnuts and other nuts helped prevent ovarian cancer that was borderline. It means that these foods helped prevent slow growing tumors that are less dangerous than high growing tumors. However, walnuts and other types of nuts weren’t able to help with high aggressive ovarian cancers. (65)

Bottom Line: Eating an ounce about two times each week will help women decrease pancreatic cancer risks by 35% and also will decrease pseudocyst, which happens when the pancreas becomes injured. Not only will walnuts help with pancreatic cancer, it can also help with ovarian cancers. However, walnuts can only help protect the body from low growth tumors and not high aggressive ovarian cancers and high growing tumors.

13. Walnuts Help Increase Sperm Count

After everything that walnuts can do for us, why couldn’t it help men with their sperm? Researchers have said that men eating about 2.5 ounces per day of walnuts can increase sperm count and improve semen. (66)

According to UCLA who conducted a study stated, that consuming 75 grams per day will improve motility, vitality, and morphology of the sperm in men. These studies have said it will help in men that are healthy that’s aged 21 to 35 years. (67)

Morphology, is the percentage of semen that are normally shaped. Motility, is the percentage of semen that are swimming forward. Vitality, is the percentage of how many of the semen is actually alive. (68)

Walnuts have high levels of omega-3. Omega-3’s plays a very special role in helping sperm membranes functions. Not only does it help with membrane functions but it also helps the sperm maturation. (69)

Getting pregnant can sometimes not happen due to the sperm not working. Studies are being done to see if eating walnuts can help a couple get pregnant. The studies aren’t yet finished however the studies did show that consuming walnuts can help increase the sperm swimming. (70)

Bottom Line: Although studies haven’t been done yet to see if walnuts can help with reproducing. Studies have stated that men can eat about 2.5 ounces every day and it will increase sperm and also improve the semen. Not only that, but men can also eat 75 grams of walnuts a day to help improve the vitality, motility, and morphology of the sperm.

14. Walnuts Are Great for Mothers-to-be

Women who are pregnant that have a rich diet in fatty acids like walnuts, can help the baby not develop food allergies. Researchers have said that a mother’s diet of certain polyunsaturated fatty acids (which are found in walnuts) can change how the gut develops. (71)

How this happens is that the fatty acids are supposed to improve the gut immune cells which responds to foreign and bacteria substances. This can help the baby not have allergies or decrease their suffering from allergies. (72)

We know walnuts have Omega 3’s in them. However, these omega 3’s helps develop brain and eye development when your child is still in your womb. We also know that walnut contains copper. This also helps with development in the growth department. (73)

Women who have been diagnosed with postpartum depression has even been told to consume walnuts regularly to help with the imbalance of chemicals going on in the brain and with the hormones. (74)

However, just because walnuts are good for you, you won’t want to consume too much during your pregnancy. There are several risks factors that could happen if you consume more than you should. Such as hemorrhaging during labor, it can lead to anemia, and if you were mildly allergic before pregnancy, those symptoms can increase due to pregnancy. (75)

Bottom Line: Walnuts can help women that are pregnant by helping brain, eye, and growth development. It can also help the baby not have allergies or decrease their allergies. Walnuts can also help women that’s dealing with postpartum depression. However, during your pregnancy you don’t want to consume a lot of walnuts due to risks. I suggest talking to your doctor before you start consuming walnuts just as a precaution.

15. Walnuts Keeps Breast Cancer Away or Decreases the Tumors

Research has been done and showed that mice eating 2 ounces of walnuts a day reduced the tumor growth. The research also showed that the mice that had walnuts in their diet had their tumors and sizes of them smaller than that of mice that didn’t have walnuts. (76)

Research has stated that the reason why walnuts can combat this disease is the antioxidants, phytosterols, and omega 3’s. Phytosterols especially helps fight breast cancer because it’s bind to receptors that are called estrogen receptors. Because phytosterols are bound to these receptors, it’s said that it can slow the growth of breast cancer cells. This is because it’s also said that estrogen can sometimes help the cancer cells or tumors grow. (77)

The research was done that mice eating walnuts every day helped tumor growth reduce. The study is showing that the walnuts delayed tumor growth by 3 weeks! According to this study, that means in humans the delayed tumor growth could be up to 9 years! (78)

A study was also done where girls who ate peanut, walnuts, etc. showed that they had a 40% lower chance of getting breast cancer when they become adults than girls who didn’t eat any type of nuts in their diet. (79)

Women can also get benign breast conditions that can lead to breast cancer. Benign breast conditions are a type of non-cancerous conditions that can lead to breast cancer. However, there are many different types of benign breast conditions. Some could lead to breast cancer while others won’t. Some will need treatment while others you won’t need treatment at all. Walnuts can help lower these chances in adults and even in young girls. (80) (81)

Bottom Line: Consuming walnuts can help reduce breast cancer tumors and actually delay the tumors from growing. Studies have shown that you should consume about 2 ounces of walnuts a day whether you have breast cancer or you just want to be on the safe side and take care of your body. Young girls can also start including walnuts into their diet to help protect them from breast cancer or benign breast conditions.

16. Extra Benefits

  1. Walnuts Can Reduce Cholecystectomy

Walnut consumption has been linked to reduced cholecystectomy. Cholecystectomy is when you have an operation to remove your gallbladder. Consuming walnuts will help reduce these risks. (82)

In fact, there have been several million people that have been reported and documented over 20 years. These reports have been over women that eat over 5 ounces walnuts and other nuts each week. Because of their diet, they were able to lower this risk of getting a cholecystectomy over women who didn’t eat any walnuts or ate less than an ounce. (83)

High cholesterol can lead to a lot of serious complications. One of them is having to remove your gallbladder. Walnuts have polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fat in them. These help control cholesterol levels and also prevents gallbladder surgery. (84)

Bottom Line: Walnuts can reduce cholecystectomy, which is when you have to have surgery to remove your gallbladder. Research has been shown that women who ate 5 ounces or more walnuts lowered their risk of getting this operation then over women who didn’t have walnuts or any type of nut in their diet. One of the risk of having cholecystectomy is having high cholesterol. Fortunately, walnuts also help with decreasing high cholesterol.

2. Walnuts Help People With Epilepsy

Another benefit is that walnuts can help people who have epilepsy. Epilepsy is a condition that has a wide range of different types of seizures. It can affect anybody any age. It’s the same thing as when someone says they have a seizure disorder. (85)

Epilepsy affects about 4% of individuals throughout their lifetime. Antiepileptic drugs are available however, it only helps with the symptoms but not the cause. (86)

People who have epilepsy have been known to have lower blood manganese than people who don’t have epilepsy. Because walnuts have manganese in them, people who have epilepsy can consume walnuts to help add manganese they don’t have in their bodies already. However, there are more research that needs to be done due to if there’s a connection with epilepsy and lower levels of manganese or, if it’s genetic. (87)

Walnut kernels are said to have phenolic compounds which are high in contractions. These have effects that benefit the human health which can possibly help with epilepsy. This is because of the anti-atherogenic and antioxidant properties the walnut kernels have in them. Research has stated that the walnut kernels does protect the neurons from oxidative stress that’s caused by the seizures. (88)

Bottom Line: Epilepsy is a condition that is different types of seizure disorders which can affect anybody at any age in their life. Studies have shown that people with epilepsy have low blood manganese. Walnuts have manganese in them which can help people with epilepsy. However, more research needs to be done if the lower manganese is from epilepsy or it’s a genetic issue. Walnut kernels can protect the neurons from stress which causes seizures. Walnut kernels also have anti-atherogenic and antioxidant properties that helps people with epilepsy.

Below are 8 delicious walnut recipes that you can make for you and for you family.

8 Delicious Walnut Recipes

Walnut Cookies

Ingredients

1 cup chopped walnuts

¼ cup sugar

1 egg white

Directions

On HIGH, start beating the egg white.

Then add the sugar to the egg white.

Beat again until it turns stiff.

Fold the walnuts in.

Once done, add the cookie dough balls onto a greased cookie sheet.

At 250 degrees, bake for about 35 to 40 minutes.

Check the cookies with a toothpick to make sure they’re done.

Let cool before serving. Or eat them while they’re still warm but not too hot. (89)

Angel Walnut Cake

Ingredients

1 ½ cups powdered sugar

7 egg whites

1 ½ cups of walnuts

Directions

Beat egg whites until they are stiff.

After that, add in the walnuts and sugar.

Grease a cake pan and add the mixture.

Put the cake pan into the oven at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes.

Make sure the cake is fully done. Check in the middle with a toothpick.

Make sure the cake is cool before you start frosting.

Angel Walnut Frosting

Ingredients

1 cup of walnuts, chopped

1 cup of sugar

5 tablespoons of milk

5 tablespoons of butter

Directions

Melt the butter in a saucepan.

When the butter is melted, add the sugar and milk.

Bring to a boil and stir until it’s slightly thick.

Add ½ of the walnuts, fold.

Make sure the cake is cooled down before frosting.

Then frost the cake.

After the cake is frosted, sprinkle the rest of the walnuts on top of the cake.

Chocolate Walnut Candies

Ingredients

½ cup walnuts that are chopped

2 (1 ounce) unsweetened chocolate squares

1 (14 ounce) sweetened condensed milk in a can

Directions

Take the chocolate and melt them in a saucepan.

After melted, take the chocolate off the heat and stir in the milk and walnuts.

Drop the mixture using a spoon on an ungreased cookie sheet.

Turn the oven on to 350 degrees. You might want to do this before you start.

After it’s preheated, turn the oven off and place the cookie sheet in the oven while it’s cooling down.

Leave them in there for about 15 minutes.

While the candies are still warm, remove them from the sheet.

Let cool before eating.

Walnut Chocolate Fudge

Ingredients

1 cup of chopped walnuts

¼ cup butter

1 (14 ounce) milk that’s sweetened and condensed

3 cups either white or regular chocolate chips

Directions

Add chocolate, butter, and the milk together and then melt it.

After everything is melted and mixed, add the walnuts.

Grease an 8x8 baking dish that’s lined with parchment paper.

Pour the mixture into the baking dish and then refrigerate for about an hour.

Once it’s set, remove the fudge by lifting up on the parchment paper.

Cut into it however you want! (93)

Walnut Salad

Ingredients

1 (6 ounce) container of plain yogurt

4 large apples, chopped

2 cups of walnuts, chopped

Directions

In a bowl, add yogurt, apples, and 1 cup of the walnuts.

Stir well.

Put salad into a serving bowl and sprinkle the rest of the walnuts on top.

Make sure you keep the salad chill and cool while serving. (94)

Walnut Muffins

Ingredients

1 teaspoon vanilla

⅓ Cup sugar

2 cups flour

⅓ Cup brown sugar

½ teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons baking powder

⅔ Cup milk

1 stick of butter

1 cup walnuts

2 eggs

Directions

Combine in a mixing bowl both sugars, flour, salt, and baking powder.

Take another mixing bowl and add the eggs, milk, butter, and vanilla.

Put both bowls together and mix well.

After that, add walnuts and mix that well again.

Oven should be on 400 degrees.

Add 12 lined muffin cups.

Pour the batter into the muffin cups.

Bake for about 20 minutes.

Let the pan cool and then remove the cups from the pan. (95)

Simple Walnut Recipe

Ingredients

1 cup of maple syrup

⅛ Teaspoon salt

2 cups walnuts

Directions

Cut the walnuts into halves.

Add the maple syrup, salt, and the walnut halves into a skillet on medium-high.

Stir frequently until the nuts are all toasted how you like it.

Let cool before serving. (96)

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