As improbable as this may sound, almond butter can help you lost weight. You probably want to read that sentence a second time, looking for the missing "not." It may be very hard to imagine something as creamy and delicious as almond butter becoming part of your healthy eating regimen, but almond butter actually has many healthy characteristics.
One careful consideration you need to make in any type of diet is to balance the trade-off between eating fewer calories and gaining more nutrition. You know the stories too well of women who diet and lose weight but also lose sight of nutrition, weaken, and fall ill or "crash" and gain the weight back.
Including a nutrient-dense food like almond butter is a way to protect yourself from something like that happening to you. With almond butter, you are getting the strengthening vitamins, minerals and "good" fats that you need. Also, calorie for calorie, you are making sure you are not wasting calories on non-nutritious foods such as gummy bears. Instead, you are spending calories wisely. Almonds give you lasting energy to get through the day.
Just one 100-calorie tablespoon's total fat is 9-10 grams, and sodium is minimal. Spoon by spoon, almond butter is high in riboflavin, folate, vitamin E, and niacin and low in cholesterol. Almond butter is a good source of magnesium and manganese. This butter also has phosphorous and riboflavin and is a good source of protein.
You need not worry about those 9-10 grams of fat. While 10 seems high, they are grams of "good" fat. Almond butter is low in saturated fats, which raise levels of cholesterol, and high in monounsaturated fats, which lower cholesterol.
Almond butter also has omega 3 fatty acids. The American Heart Association notes that a diet high in omega 3 fatty acids have many benefits for heart health. Omega 3 fatty acids can lower cholesterol and Low Density Lipoproteins (LDL). Omega 3 fatty acids can also reduce the chance of blood clots and in turn reduce your risk of stroke. Omega 3 fatty acids help support bone strength too.
Almond butter may decrease after-meal blood sugar spikes. That can help you resist late-night candy cravings or overindulgence in rich desserts.
There are dozens of recipes that make good use of almond butter. Here are three low-calorie ways to enjoy its high nutritive value. Of course, nobody will arrest you if you take the simple route and eat a tablespoon's worth straight out of the jar.
- Using one tablespoon or less, spread some almond butter on one slice of whole-wheat toast or a plain bagel.
- Fill a celery stick with a teaspoon or so of almond butter.
- Spread on some almond butter between two rice cakes
Remember to watch those portions. You may find you can have a satisfying snack with one, not two, tablespoons of almond butter.
One tablespoon (99-100 calories) of almond butter may be enough for open-face sandwich spreads and celery-dipping. You may even find a brand of almond butter that defines a serving as two tablespoons (190-200 calories) which is quite ample.