Almonds For Luck and Health

canstockphoto1398429 almonds

Almonds have a long history from Egyptian caravans to modern day.  They have been found in tombs and are written of in the bible.  In modern times they are excellent for preventing cancer and heart disease.   

Mythology 

Both the Greeks and the Portuguese have similar myths about the almond tree.  In the greek myth Phyllis the Queen was left at the altar by her lover.  After waiting for a time she came to believe that he had found another and died of a broken heart.  The God’s turned Phyllis into an almond tree without leaves or blossoms.  When her lover returned he found only a tree which he embraced.  When he embraced the tree it burst into bloom.  The almond tree became a symbol of hope and constancy in love. 

There is a long tradition of giving odd numbers of almonds for good luck.  It appears that there are good reasons for this belief.

Almond Medicine 

Just one ounce of almonds contains one eighth of our necessary daily protein.  Almonds are a balanced food and are even gluten free.  In addition to protein they contain magnesium, vitamin E and Copper.  They are currently being researched for their effects in lowering cholesterol and preventing cancer.

Heart Health 

A study at Aston University has found that almonds keep blood vessels healthy which reduces blood pressure.  They also significantly increase the antioxidant level in the bloodstream.  The study concluded that “it’s never to late to introduce them into your diet.” 

Almonds contain phytosterols which lower cholesterol by reducing the level of cholesterol absorbed from other foods.  Even Circulation, the online magazine of the American Heart Association cites a study showing a significant reduction in LDL levels from almond consumption. 

Cancer

According to Medical News Today a study at the University of California,Davis showed that almond consumption reduces the risk of colon cancer via an almond lipid associated component.  

At present most of the research into almonds benefits has been focused on colon cancer but there has been some speculation on its effects on breast cancer. 

Brain 

Almonds contain brain nutrients riboflavin and L-carnitine which increase brain activity.  They help build new neural pathways which in turn can help by decreasing the  occurrence of Alzheimer’s. 

Some other health benefits of eating almonds are:

  • Immune System Support
  • Bone Health
  • Skin Care
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Energy Boost

 More research needs to be done by independent researchers but it is clear that almonds are a superfood.  Try the Almond Smoothie recipe below! 

THIS BLOG IS NOT INTENDED TO REPLACE THE ADVICE OF YOUR DOCTOR. 

Almond Smoothie 

6 oz almond milk (unsweetened)

1 Tbsp Almond Butter

1 Tbsp cocoa powder

1 frozen banana chopped 

Combine ingredients in a Magic bullet/Nutri bullet or blender.  Blend until thick and creamy.  Enjoy.