Walnuts provide healthy fats, fiber, vitamins and minerals — and that’s just the beginning of how they may support your health. At average they contain about 65% fat by weight and are also richer than most other nuts in polyunsaturated fats. The most abundant one is an omega-6 fatty acid called linoleic acid and a relatively high percentage of the healthy omega-3 fat alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). In fact, walnuts are the only nuts that contain significant amounts of ALA. This makes up around 8–14% of the total fat content. Let’s not forget about arachidonic acids in them as well. The inclusion of these nuts in any diet can help prevent coronary heart diseases by favoring a healthy lipid supply.

Some other notable plant compounds in walnuts include:

1. Ellagic acid. This antioxidant is found in high amounts in walnuts, along with other related compounds like ellagitannins. Ellagic acid may reduce your risk of heart disease and cancer.
2. Catechin. Catechin is a flavonoid antioxidant that may have various health benefits, including promoting heart health.
3. Melatonin. This neurohormone helps regulate your body clock. It’s also a powerful antioxidant that may reduce your risk of heart disease.
4. Phytic acid. Phytic acid, or phytate, is a beneficial antioxidant, though it can reduce the absorption of iron and zinc from the same meal — an effect that’s only of concern for those following imbalanced diets.

Weight control and management

Walnuts are a rich source of protein and fiber. They are calorie dense, but studies suggest that the energy absorbed from them is 21% lower than would be expected based on their nutrients. Additionally, they may even help you control appetite and hunger.

Heart health, blood pressure and cholesterol

Walnuts contain essential Omega-3 fatty acids, amino acids, alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), and more such nutrients that lead to the prevention of coronary heart disease. What’s more, ALA is a precursor for the long-chain omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA, which have been linked to numerous health benefits. Fresh raw walnuts are rich in amino acid l-arginine, and monounsaturated fatty acids (72%) like oleic acid. Walnuts are significantly higher in omega-3 fat than any other nut, providing 2.5 grams per 28 gram serving.
The adequate intake of ALA is 1.6 grams for men and 1.1 grams per day and women respectively. Observational studies have shown that each gram of ALA you eat per day lowers your risk of dying from heart disease by 10%.

High blood pressure is a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke. Studies suggest that eating walnuts may help lower blood pressure, including in people with high blood pressure and in healthy people when under stress. This is important, as small differences in blood pressure are thought to have a big impact on your risk of heart disease death
Small study in healthy adults showed that eating a walnut-rich meal prevented oxidative damage of LDL cholesterol after consumption, whereas a refined-fat meal didn’t. That’s beneficial because oxidized LDL is prone to build up in your arteries, causing atherosclerosis. Elevated levels of LDL cholesterol and triglycerides have long been linked to an increased heart disease risk. Regularly eating walnuts has been consistently shown to decrease cholesterol levels. ALA omega-3 fat, magnesium and the amino acid arginine in walnuts may also decrease inflammation and is beneficial for your heart and blood pressure.

Brain function and cognition

The Omega-3 in walnuts help improve focus and memory and lead to an overall healthy functioning brain. Studies found that the nutrients in walnuts, including polyunsaturated fat, polyphenols and vitamin E, may help reduce oxidative damage and inflammation in your brain. Inflammation is at the root of many diseases, including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease and cancer, and can be caused by oxidative stress. Other studies in older adults have shown that eating walnuts improves brain function, including faster processing speed, more mental flexibility and better memory.

Sleep regulation

Eating walnuts an hour or so before bedtime could actually help you fall asleep faster. These super nuts contain a certain amount of melatonin is is a hormone that acts as an antioxidant and controls your body’s internal clock and women’s menstrual cycles. It may also improve immune function and have an effect on the aging process. That said it regulates your circadian rhythm (sleep cycle) and helps you drift into a good night’s sleep. They were found to contain about 3.5 nanograms of melatonin per gram.

Digestion and gut health

A rich source of dietary fiber, walnuts ensure good digestive health and bowel function. They also promote gut health by supporting the good bacteria in your gut. Eating walnuts not only nourishes you but also the beneficial bacteria that live in your gut. This promotes the health of your gut and may help reduce disease risk. Beneficial bacteria in your gut convert ellagitannins to compounds called urolithins, which have been found to protect against inflammation.

Cancer prevention

Animal and human observational studies suggest that eating walnuts may reduce your risk of certain cancers, including breast, prostate and colorectal cancers. As noted earlier, walnuts are rich in the polyphenol ellagitannins. Certain gut microbes can convert these to compounds called urolithins.
Urolithins can have anti-inflammatory properties in your gut, which may be one way that eating walnuts helps protect against colorectal cancer. Urolithins’ anti-inflammatory actions could also help protect against other cancers. Urolithins have hormone-like properties that enable them to block hormone receptors in your body. This may help reduce your risk of hormone-related cancers, specifically breast and prostate cancers.

Muscle recovery

This way said all above together combined can aid in muscle recovery and help in muscle building as well as improvements in your endurance and athletic performance.

Skin, hair, and nails

Walnuts contain high levels of vitamin B biotin and vitamin E. These delay ageing in your skin, promote hair growth, and help improve the overall quality of hair and nails.

Sperm and fertility

Eating walnuts may help support sperm health and male fertility. Some studies show significant improvements in sperm quality and mobility.


  1. https://www.scoopwhoop.com/walnut-superfood/
  2. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/benefits-of-walnuts#section14
  3. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/foods/walnuts#bottom-line
  4. https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/seed-and-nut/health-benefits-of-walnuts.html
  5. https://healthyeating.sfgate.com/walnuts-melatonin-3811.html

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