Below are some quick and easy tips and suggestions on adding nuts to your diet:
- Add cashews or peanuts to your favorite stir-fry recipe.
- Toss roasted pine nuts into pesto or marinara sauce and serve with whole-wheat pasta.
- Add slivered almonds to yogurt as a crunchy treat.
- Top your favorite non-fat frozen yogurt with a serving of peanuts.
- Enjoy water chestnuts with your favorite Asian dish; peanuts to a Thai dish.
- Toss walnuts into a spinach and strawberry salad.
- Dish out pecan-crusted salmon your family is sure to love.
- Purchase trail mixes for a quick treat. Avoid one’s with added sodium, chocolate chips, coconut or those cooked in tropical oils.
- Create your own homemade trail mix: add your favorite nut(s) to whole-wheat Chex®, pretzel pieces, raisins, dates or other dried fruits. Package into snack-sized baggies and enjoy anytime.
- Chop up walnuts, almonds or pecans and mix into your favorite banana or zucchini bread recipe.
- Top minced or chopped pistachios onto nonfat vanilla pudding.
- Spread 2 Tbsp. natural peanut, almond or walnut butters onto celery sticks for a quick snack.
However you enjoy them, remember that adding nuts to your diet is one of many nutritional strategies aimed at reducing your risk of coronary heart disease. The best way to reduce your risk is to combine a high-fiber diet, rich in complex carbohydrates (whole grains, legumes, nuts and seeds) to a variety of fruits, vegetables and low-fat dairy each day to reap optimal heart-health benefits. Add to the equation a healthy body weight and regular physical activity and you can effectively reduce your risk of coronary heart disease.