Written by Jack Boardman
Organic Nuts, Stock Up!!
Whether you’re seeking general health gains or aiming for serious mass muscle gains, this winter you need to find ways to stock up on your consumption of nuts.
Seen those idyllic snapshots on the front of Christmas cards of squirrels hoarding nuts for hibernation? Well, whether you’re hibernating this winter or after healthy natural sources of fuel, you might want to keep that image in mind.
When it comes to protein and health, nuts are friend to vegans, vegetarians, folk on Paleo diets and anyone seeking healthy, natural ways to increase their protein (except those with nut allergies, of course).
In particular, vegans face a slightly tougher challenge of getting the protein they need for exercise – but vegan bodybuilders will need to store away great amounts of protein, vitamins, fats and carbs. Vegan or not, nuts should be a go-to source of protein and health gains for everyone from body builders to people looking for a well-balanced diet.
Packed full of protein, nuts are also a great source of the good fats that you need – unsaturated fats and omega-3 fatty acids. As well as this they’re a top source of fibre, they contain plant sterols, which have powerful cholesterol-lowering properties. Furthermore, they are a good source of vitamin E, which is a fat soluble antioxidant and provides protection against toxins. Need another positive? Well, nuts are also a good source of l-arginine, which has been proven to improve blood flow in the arteries.
For further reading, take a look at our Top Ten Vegan Myths
If there’s one thing we know about at MyProtein it’s the benefits of protein consumption and all the many ways it is a bodybuilder’s best friend. Protein is the building blocks of muscle and there is a distinct correlation between the amount of protein you ingest and the amount of muscle you can gain.
For mass gainers, stock up! But if you’re calorie counting and keeping a strict diet or working for that lean muscle, you can still take advantage of the protein positives of nuts but take a second look at the fat intake that comes with each type of nut. For low calorie, high protein, stock up on almonds. Want the mass gain? Get your pistachios.
For the seasoned health-conscious person, knowledge of food groups and protein sources may be something you’re well versed in by now, but when it comes to variety you may be a little stumped.
As well as recipes and shakes including natural nut sources, nut butter in its many forms is the perfect way to add a little diversity to your between-workout snacks. Triple Nut Butter offers a unique blend of high protein nuts, including roasted peanuts, cashews and almonds all in one place. As a spread it can add variety to your routine go-to carbs like rice cakes, crackers, wholegrain toast and fruits. It can also be used with your protein shakes and when cooking hot food. A dollop in the blender will add everything you need from nuts but with a texture at home in a smoothie, and the same goes for the frying pan – stir fry anyone?