People love almond meal because it’s a gluten-free flour, and it’s also a great choice for anyone on a low-carbohydrate diet. If you’re a following a paleo diet or looking to bake without grains, almond flour is pretty much a must-have in your pantry as well. This flour is made of almonds and only almonds, which are first blanched to remove the skin and then ground up to a very fine consistency.
As we know, almonds nutrition is highly impressive. The awesome thing about almond flour is that it’s simply ground-up almonds so it gives you all of the original almond’s health benefits. One cup of this flour contains about 90 almonds and provides more than 100 percent of the daily requirement for vitamin E. It’s super versatile and can be used in all kinds of baked foods. It packs a potent punch of nutrition, unlike a typical gluten-rich, overly processed flour that does nothing good for your health.
Science has shown that almonds are a natural powerhouse when it comes to heart health, blood sugar management and even some types of cancer. Studies have also found that the almonds that make up its namesake flour are even better than complex carbohydrates when it comes to losing weight and maintaining a slimmer waistline. Let’s check out this amazing flour works as a healthier flour option.
5 Health Benefits of Almond Flour
1. Boosts Heart Health
More than 65 percent of the fat in almond flour is monounsaturated, which is excellent for maintaining healthy cholesterol levels and good overall heart health. Additionally, scientists find that almond consumption can reduce the risk of coronary heart disease by keeping blood vessels healthy.
Study subjects consumed 50 grams of almonds daily for a month, and the results were highly positive for their heart health. Whether you’re eating whole almonds, almond flour or almond meal, this research out of the U.K. shows that eating almonds significantly increases the level of antioxidants in the bloodstream, improves blood flow and reduces blood pressure. All of these health markers are key to a properly functioning heart and can reduce the likelihood of heart disease.
2. Helps Discourage Cancer Formation
Researchers at the University of California conducted a study to evaluate the effect of almonds and almond meal on colon cancer cells. They found that whole almonds and almond fractions reduce aberrant crypt foci in an animal model of colon cancer. Aberrant crypt foci are clusters of abnormal tube-like glands in the lining of the colon and rectum and are some of the earliest colon changes that may lead to colon cancer.
According to the study’s authors, the results suggest that almond consumption can decrease the risk of colon cancer and almonds’ high healthy fat content is related to its anticancer ability. This research shows why almonds are among the best Decease – fighting foods around.
3. Aids in Managing Blood Sugar for Diabetics
A 2006 study published in the Journal of Nutrition found that for healthy individuals, almonds decrease postprandial glycemia (post-meal blood glucose levels), the presence of insulin in the blood and oxidative damage. Researchers gave subjects controlled meals based either around almonds, potatoes, rice or bread. They found that participants’ blood sugar and insulin decreased after eating the almond meal. Antioxidant levels in the blood also increased after the almond meal.
In general, almonds are a smart choice as part of a low glycemic, diabetic diet plan, which can help decrease the incidence of diabetes incidence as well as the risk of coronary heart disease.
4. Encourages Healthy Waistlines
A randomized, 24-week study published in the International Journal of Obesity and Related Metabolic Disorders evaluated the effects of almonds versus complex carbohydrates on 65 adults who were either overweight or obese. Half of the study participants consumed a low-calorie diet plus three ounces of almonds per day. The other half of the group ate a low-calorie diet plus their choice of complex carbohydrates each day. Both groups consumed the exact same amount of calories and protein.
When the study concluded, the almond-eaters showed a 62 percent greater reduction in weight, a 50 percent greater reduction in waist circumference and a 56 percent greater reduction in fat mass compared with the carb-consuming group. Researchers also concluded that their findings suggest that a low-calorie diet including almonds improves health issues (like obesity) associated with metabolic syndrome.
5. Improves Energy Levels
The combination of healthy fats, macronutrients and micronutrients make almond flour an excellent energy booster. Specifically, the flour contains energy creators like riboflavin, manganese and copper. The riboflavin (vitamin B2) in almonds plays an essential role in energy production, red blood cell creation, cellular function, growth and development.
It also contains the trace minerals manganese and copper. These two minerals are crucial co-factors of an enzyme called superoxide dismutase. This key enzyme deactivates free radicals in the mitochondria (power generators within our cells), which ensures that our energy keeps flowing. When you use almond flour as part of a generally healthy recipe, it doesn’t just taste good, but it can provide a steady source of fuel that also won’t make your blood sugar spike.