At Private Home Care, we are nuts about healthy ingredients in trail mix! Trail mix can be a very healthy snack. Traditional trail mixes are loaded with nuts, seeds, and dried fruit.
Nuts are winners with our favorite words – Antioxidants and the Mediterranean Diet! Why we love nuts:
-High in monounsaturated fats (most nut types) and polyunsaturated fats (mainly walnuts).
-Nuts may significantly lower your risk of heart attack and stroke. Eating nuts decreases “bad” LDL particle size and triglycerides while boosting “good” HDL cholesterol, which improves artery function.
-Low in saturated fats-Beneficial for Type 2 Diabetes and Metabolic Syndrome: Nuts are low in carbs and do not raise (or spike) sugar levels very much, rather they help regulate blood sugar. This means that by substituting nuts for higher-carb foods, it may lead to reduced blood sugar levels.
-Good sources of dietary protein, also a good alternative to animal proteins. Some nuts are also high in amino acid arginine, which keeps blood vessels healthy
-Free of dietary cholesterol
-High in dietary fiber. This means that eating nuts can reduce disease risk, aid in weight loss by helping keep you full, decrease calorie absorption, and improve gut health.-Rich in antioxidants, including the polyphenols in nuts, which can combat oxidative stress by neutralizing free radicals — unstable molecules that may cause cell damage and increase disease risk. This is because nuts are rich in phytochemicals. One study found that walnuts have a greater capacity to fight free radicals than fish.
-Rich in vitamins E, B6, niacin and folate; and they provide minerals such as magnesium, zinc, plant iron, calcium, copper, selenium, phosphorus and potassium.
-Great food for a low carb diet
-Eating nuts may help reduce inflammation! Nuts have strong anti-inflammatory properties. Inflammation is your body’s way of defending itself from injury, bacteria, and other potentially harmful pathogens. However, chronic, long-term inflammation can cause damage to organs and increase disease risk. Research suggests that eating nuts may reduce inflammation and promote healthy aging!
Private Home Care also loves the nutritious seeds included in trail mix! Here are health benefits of eating superfood seas:
Essential Fats: All seeds are high in essential fats like omega-3, which is excellent for heart and brain function and often lacking in most diets. Hemp seed also has a perfect balance of omega 6 -to- omega 3, which is considered to be optimal by health experts.
Protein and essential amino acids: Seeds are generally an excellent source of protein. Quinoa, amaranth, chia and hemp seeds are particularly noteworthy since they offer complete proteins, meaning that they contain all 9 essential fats required for optimal health. Using a balance of different seeds in your diet will also ensure a great supply of protein.
Nutrient dense: As well as protein, seeds are jam-packed with nutrients. Eating a variety of different seeds, over the course of your week, will ensure that you receive a healthy dose of phosphorus, magnesium, selenium, manganese, zinc, iron, copper, B vitamins, vitamin K and antioxidant rich vitamin E (and more). All of these nutrients are essential for supporting health on multiple levels.
Excellent source of fiber: Like most plant based foods, seeds are naturally full of fiber. Fiber is good for blood sugar control, helping to slow the breakdown of carbohydrates and absorption of sugar. It is also great for promoting healthy bowel movement, heart health and weight-loss management.
Lower cholesterol and blood pressure: Seeds (to varying degrees) possess important cholesterol-fighting fiber known as lignans. Flax, chia and sesame seeds contain exceptionally beneficial levels – more than most other foods. Studies also show that this beneficial action from seeds can in turn lower blood pressure.
Antioxidant Rich Seeds: All seeds have a beneficial level of antioxidants, whilst some seeds are absolute powerhouses full of the stuff. Flax is one of the highest rated antioxidants amongst plant foods, coming up top for polyphenols, which are superstars in the antioxidant world.
Here are the health benefits of standout seeds that are often found in trail mix:
Sunflower seeds: Sunflower seeds are an excellent source of folate which is essential before and during pregnancy. Like other nuts and seeds they also contain Vitamin E – an antioxidant which can help to support immune function and maintain healthy skin and hair. Sunflower seeds contain high levels of both monounsaturated and omega-6 fats, and may help reduce inflammation and cholesterol levels.
Pumpkin seeds: Pumpkin seeds are a source of B vitamins, including folate. They are also packed with the nutrients and minerals of iron (helps to make red blood cells), magnesium (helps to turn the food we eat into energy and keep our bones healthy), zinc (helps to make new cells and enzymes, process carbohydrate, fat and protein in food, and the healing of wounds) and protein. Pumpkin seeds are also a good source of monounsaturated and omega-6 fats, and may help improve heart health and symptoms of urinary disorders.
Sesame seeds: Sesame seeds are packed full of calcium and are therefore perfect for people trying to protect their bone health. They are a great source of lignans, which may help improve sex hormone status for estrogen. Sesame seeds may also help reduce inflammation and oxidative stress.