Crazy for Walnuts

walnut-love

California Walnuts 

More than 99% of the walnuts in U.S. are grown in the fertile soils of California's Central Valley. Internationally, California walnuts supply three-quarters of the world's walnut trade. In 2015, walnuts were the 5th most valuable agricultural commodity grown in Yolo County, the harvest valued at more than 36 million dollars.

Walnuts Are Good For Your Health

Unique among nuts, walnuts contain the highest amount of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), the plant-based omega-3 essential fatty acid, required by the human body. Walnuts are one of the best plant food sources of omega-3s, a one-ounce serving of walnuts provides 2.5 grams of ALA. A growing body of scientific evidence is beginning to uncover a variety of benefits that ALA/omega-3s may provide to our bodies. In addition to essential ALA/omega-3 fatty acids, an ounce of walnuts offers 4 grams of protein and 2 grams of fiber. Walnuts are also a good source of magnesium (44 mg/oz) and phosphorus (98 mg/oz) – both important minerals involved in the body's processes.

Eating Walnuts May Prevent Colon Cancer

Researchers from University of Connecticut Health and The Jackson Laboratory for Genomic Medicine recently found that eating walnuts may change gut bacteria in a way that suppresses colon cancer.

Reporting in the journal of Cancer Prevention Research, the researchers discovered that mice that ate 7% to 10.5% of their total calories as walnuts developed fewer colon cancers. For humans, that is about an ounce of walnuts a day. Read more about the study here.

Eating Walnuts May Lower Cholesterol

Another study reported that incorporating daily doses of walnuts to the diet of older adults for 1 year resulted in significant LDL-cholesterol reduction without adverse effects on body weight. Read more about that study in the official Journal of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology.

Will Eating Walnuts Improve the Aging Process?

The Department of Nutrition at Loma Linda University is conducting research on the effects of eating walnuts and aging. You can learn more here

Keep Walnuts Fresh

You can maintain the fresh taste of California walnuts by keeping them cold. When you bring walnuts home from the store, the best place to store them is in your refrigerator or freezer, depending on when you're going to use them. If you're going to use the walnuts right away, place them in your refrigerator. If you'll be storing them for a month or longer, store them in your freezer.

Walnuts go rancid when exposed to warm temperatures for long periods of time. Heat causes the fat in walnuts to change structure, which creates off odors and flavors. Fresh walnuts smell mildly nutty and taste sweet. If your walnuts smell like paint thinner, you know they're rancid. And if they're rancid, you should throw them away!

Holiday Walnut Recipes

Maple Chile Walnuts 

Cranberry, Cherry & Walnut Marmalade

Walnut Snowball Cookies

Holiday Walnut Torte