Nuts and dry fruits are possibly the oldest and traditional superfoods which our mothers and grandmothers have diligently offered us for our good health. Packed with good fat, proteins, magnesium, iron, vitamin B and fiber, these nutritional powerhouses are a must in every diet, recommended by all experts . Yet you must have heard to take almonds, cashews, dates, pistachios and walnuts with caution, else too much of them can result in excessive body heat, giving rise to nasty pimples and rashes. How true is the claim or is it a myth? Let’s find out.
According to a common belief, overeating dry fruits can prove to be a risky affair for those with sensitive skin. It is believed that nuts are highly rich in proteins, which activates the oil glands, especially on the face. More secretion of oil means means more clogged pores, hence more pimples. Dates also have the reputation of increasing body heat.
According to Ayurveda, our body has three types of doshas – Vatta, Pitta and Kapha. For a healthy body, these three doshas need to be balanced. People who are of Pitta type, their body temperature may run slightly high and their hands and feet tend to be warm. Pitta people do not tolerate sunlight well.
According to Dr. Vasant Lad in the book The Complete Book of Ayurvedic Home Remedies, “almonds with skin and black walnuts” tend to aggravate the Pitta dosha.
Macrobiotic Nutritionist and Health Practitioner Shilpa Arora says, “Dry fruits are dense in nutrients. Dry fruits provide us with abundance of vitamins and minerals. Dates, nuts and oilseeds are heat producing foods hence they should be either soaked overnight or eaten in moderation. Your body absorbs nutrients much more effectively when portion are controlled.”
Bangalore-based nutritionist Dr. Anju Sood dismisses the idea, “Nutritionally the myth doesn’t stand true. Food’s temperature decides whether it raises your body heat or drops it. There is, however, a common belief in Ayurveda that nuts increase body temperature. I believe that in moderate quantities nothing can harm. They are high in proteins and good fat. It is advisable to eat about five soaked almonds a day or four to five cashews a day.”
So moderation is the key here. There is no reason why you should lose out on the essential vitamins and minerals of these nuts and dry fruits, however, make sure you don’t go overboard with these crunchy treats.