Roasted chestnuts commonly spark thoughts of the holiday season and sitting by an open fire. These tree nuts are more than just the topic of song lyrics. Chestnuts are lower in fat than similar nuts such as pecans and walnuts — good news if you have been advised by your doctor to watch your intake. Chestnuts have a pleasing taste and are packed with nutrients.
Chestnuts have a high fiber content. Dietary fiber comes in the form of soluble and insoluble. Soluble gets absorbed in water and forms a gel-like consistency in the intestines. This type helps reduce cholesterol and stabilizes blood sugar levels. Insoluble fiber creates bulk in the stool and helps it pass through the system quickly. This helps reduce the risk for constipation and intestinal complications like diverticulosis — a condition where small pockets on the intestinal wall lining become inflamed. A 3-ounce serving of roasted chestnuts contains 4 grams of fiber. Nuts have predominately insoluble fiber.
Stable Energy Levels
Most nuts are low in carbohydrates, which is why they often are part of low-carb diet plans. Chestnuts, however, have a high amount of carbs. They contain 45 grams per 3-ounce serving. Carbs are needed for short- and long-term energy, and they help with nervous system function. The carbs that come from chestnuts are complex. Unlike simple carbs, complex carbs are digested slowly, which gives you even energy levels. Simple carbs tend to give you a fast spike of energy followed by a fast dip.
Support for Brain Function
The fat-soluble B vitamins help produce red blood cells, break down protein, carbs and fats for energy, promote healthy skin and enhance brain function. Chestnuts have a generous blend of B vitamins in moderately high amounts. A 3-ounce serving contains 21 percent of the recommended daily value of B-6, 15 percent of folate, 14 percent of thiamine and 9 percent of riboflavin. Eat roasted chestnuts as appetizers with a leafy green salad and lean meat for a vitamin B-packed meal.
Packed with Manganese
Chestnuts have a high content of the trace mineral manganese — an antioxidant, which soaks up free radicals in the system and reduces the risk for cancer and heart disease. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, manganese also plays a key role in the aging process. A 3-ounce serving of chestnuts contains just over 1 microgram of manganese, which is 50 percent of the recommended daily intake. Manganese also helps with connective tissue production and blood clotting. Add chopped chestnuts to a bowl of oatmeal for a manganese-packed breakfast.
Copper is a trace mineral that enhances bone strength, helps with red blood cell formation and nerve function, and boosts the immune system. A trace mineral is only needed in a small amount by the body. Chestnuts contain 22 percent of the recommended daily value of copper per 3-ounce serving. Pair roasted chestnuts with dried prunes for a snack high in copper.
Creative Serving Ideas
Roasted chestnuts aren’t just for snacking. For added crunch and nutrients in salads, top your leafy greens or melon cubes with chopped roasted chestnuts. You can also stir them into vegetables as you sauté them. For a healthy crunch with your salmon, toss marinated filets with roasted chestnuts before grilling or baking it. For a more crumb-like texture, blend them in a food processor beforehand.
- SkipThePie.org: Nutritional Info: Nuts, Chestnuts, European, Roasted
- MedlinePlus: Vitamins
- Cooperative Extension: University of Delaware: Trace Minerals
Important Notice: This article was originally published at https://healthyeating.sfgate.com by where all credits are due.
The watching, interacting, and participation of any kind with anything on this page does not constitute or initiate a doctor-patient relationship with Dr. Farrah®. None of the statements here have been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The products of Dr. Farrah® are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. The information being provided should only be considered for education and entertainment purposes only. If you feel that anything you see or hear may be of value to you on this page or on any other medium of any kind associated with, showing, or quoting anything relating to Dr. Farrah® in any way at any time, you are encouraged to and agree to consult with a licensed healthcare professional in your area to discuss it. If you feel that you’re having a healthcare emergency, seek medical attention immediately. The views expressed here are simply either the views and opinions of Dr. Farrah® or others appearing and are protected under the first amendment.
Dr. Farrah® is a highly experienced Licensed Medical Doctor certified in evidence-based clinical nutrition, not some enthusiast, formulator, or medium promoting the wild and unrestrained use of nutrition products for health issues without clinical experience and scientific evidence of therapeutic benefit. Dr. Farrah® has personally and keenly studied everything she recommends, and more importantly, she’s closely observed the reactions and results in a clinical setting countless times over the course of her career involving the treatment of over 150,000 patients.
Dr. Farrah® promotes evidence-based natural approaches to health, which means integrating her individual scientific and clinical expertise with the best available external clinical evidence from systematic research. By individual clinical expertise, I refer to the proficiency and judgment that individual clinicians acquire through clinical experience and clinical practice.
Dr. Farrah® does not make any representation or warranties with respect to the accuracy, applicability, fitness, or completeness of any multimedia content provided. Dr. Farrah® does not warrant the performance, effectiveness, or applicability of any sites listed, linked, or referenced to, in, or by any multimedia content.
To be clear, the multimedia content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health providers with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read or seen in any website, video, image, or media of any kind. Dr. Farrah® hereby disclaims any and all liability to any party for any direct, indirect, implied, punitive, special, incidental, or other consequential damages arising directly or indirectly from any use of the content, which is provided as is, and without warranties.