Almonds are highly nutritious and contain healthy fats, fiber, protein, magnesium and vitamin E. It is not a nut, but a seed of a fruit from the tree- Prunus Dulcis, also called Almond tree. Almonds contain lots of. The health benefits of almonds include lower blood sugar levels, reduced blood pressure, Lowers inflammation and lower cholesterol levels. They’re high on protein so they keep you full for longer and they’re rich in manganese which helps strengthen bones and and also help muscle and nerve function.
Different types of Almonds available in India commonly
There are three prominent types of almonds available in India- Mamra, Gurbandi and California.
Choosing the right Almond-
Mamra– accounting for just 4% in the world, it has Carbohydrate content, more oil & therefore contains more calories than the other two. It has lesser protein content as compared to California almond. Mamra are cultivated organically without using chemicals, hence it is the first choice for people. It shows great results in growing kids.
California– These almonds are sweeter in taste because of chemical processing .It’s ideal for cooking and garnishing. They are the mostly consumed almonds , having almost 85% stake in Almond market. They are larger in size and are available in neatly packed conditions.
Gurbandi (Choti giri) – These almonds are also rich in nutrients like omega 3, vitamin E and phytochemicals, gives abundant energy and are rich in antioxidant.
Is the beneficial oil extracted out of the almonds we eat?
Oil cannot be extracted from almond without crushing it.
California almonds are chemically treated to kill microorganisms and preserve almonds for longer time. But this leads to 10–15 percent loss of nutrients. So you get around 85 percent of oil and other nutrients.
Where as Mamra variety of almond which are not chemically treated. So they have natural taste and 100 percent oil intact and hence are expensive.
Which Is Better Raw Or Soaked Almond?
For diabetic patients or weight loss, California almond is better as it contains less amount of carbohydrates and sugar. Before consuming California almond make sure it is soaked in water overnight. This helps in reducing chemicals used during processing.
Raw almond contains tannin on their skin so before consuming overnight soaked almond gives extra benefit in removing toxic chemicals including tannin and phytic acid.