Dry fruits are a staple snacking item in India, with a high nutritional value that varies with each kind. Read & know how dry fruits benefit your overall health!
Whether it is a festival or a random celebration, whether you are reaching out to someone with a care package or taking along a gift for a get-together, dry fruits can be the healthiest and most convenient of companions. In this blog, we talk all about dry fruits, their benefits, how to eat them, and the best dry fruits to choose from. Sit comfortably, grab a handful of your favourite dry fruits, and read about it.
What are Dry Fruits?
When talking about dry fruits, it is crucial to know what this term incorporates. Dry fruits or “dried fruits” are fruits that have been dried or dehydrated, such as raisins, dates, figs, apricots, etc. Although dry fruits are technically not the same as nuts, in the Indian context, the terms “dry fruits” and “nuts” are used interchangeably. Thus, nuts such as almonds, walnuts, cashews, etc., are also included when we talk about dry fruits.
Dry fruits are tasty, convenient to carry, and can be consumed by almost everyone. Although considered a “rich food”, dry fruits are tiny pops of nutrition that come with multiple benefits for you.
Dry Fruits: Nutritional Value
Whether you are watching your health strictly or not, dry fruits can be an excellent addition to your meals or a great snacking option. There is no dearth of nutrients in dry fruits. They come packed with healthy fats, protein, fibre, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that promote overall health. Here is the nutritional profile for 100 g of a few commonly available dry fruits, as per the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)
|Peanuts (100 g)
|Almonds (100 g)
|Walnuts (100 g)
|Cashews (100 g)
|Dates (Mejdool) (100 g)
Health Benefits of Dry Fruits
Some of the major health benefits of dry fruits include:
- Dry fruits are jam-packed with antioxidants such as polyphenols. Antioxidants can help combat oxidative stress by reducing the effects of free radicals that cause cell damage and increase the risk of developing chronic diseases.
- Several studies suggest that regular consumption of dry fruits or nuts can help lower the levels of triglycerides and LDL or “bad” cholesterol in your blood. Meanwhile, it can also increase the levels of HDL or “good” cholesterol in your blood.
- Dry fruits possess anti-inflammatory properties, meaning they can help protect you against several types of diseases. Chronic inflammation refers to your body’s excessive response to a perceived injury or the presence of unknown pathogens, which causes damage to your organs and increases the risk of disease.
- Though considered a high-calorie food, dry fruits may aid in weight loss due to their high fibre content. Fibre works by keeping you full for extended periods and promoting a feeling of fullness. The protein content of these nuts also helps induce satiety and reduce your overall calorie intake.
- Dry fruits are a great snacking option for Type 2 Diabetics. Besides being low in carbs and low on the glycemic index, they can also be an instant source of energy for diabetics. However, be mindful of the portion sizes.
Best Dry Fruits to Choose From
You can choose dry fruits that suit your palate and needs. Here are few of the best options to choose from:
1. True Elements Californian Almonds
These almonds are 100% natural and premium quality whole almonds. They have been handpicked and come with no residues. They are rich in Omega-3 fats and protein. A handful of these almonds can be a great snack to obtain an ample amount of vitamins and minerals. Almonds can help you manage weight and heart health. They promote hormonal balance and improve digestion. Enjoy these almonds with other healthy foods such as oatmeal, smoothies, salads, etc.
2. True Elements Chilean Walnuts
This nutritious pack of Chilean walnuts may be one of the healthiest snacking options you can find. These walnuts are good for all ages – kids and adults. Walnuts are rich in protein, antioxidants, and minerals such as zinc and selenium. They may help manage body weight, regulate your sleep cycle and promote brain development in kids. Snack on them, add them to your breakfast bowls or bake with them to enjoy their taste and benefits.
3. True Elements Goan Cashews
Cashews, commonly known as kajus in India, are one of those nuts that can be eaten as it is but can also be added to sweet and savoury dishes for that extra kick of flavour and nutrition. These crunchy and delicious cashews are 100% whole cashews that have been handpicked. They are rich in protein, healthy fats, magnesium, and selenium. Cashews are jam-packed with benefits from protecting your heart health to improving your skin. You can add them to your salad or cereal bowls, incorporate them in desserts or simply take a handful as a snack.
4. Nutrifun Whole Cashew
These whole cashews are a combination of taste and health. They are rich in antioxidants and can aid in losing weight and improving heart health. You can have them as a snack with your daily cup of tea or add them while preparing your choice of sweet and savoury dishes – whether it is curries, pulaos, puddings, or milkshakes.
5. Nutrifun Almond Regular
These almonds can quickly satisfy your taste buds with their nutty and crunchy goodness. They are filled with antioxidants and vitamin E. You can munch on them between meals or add them to salads, breakfast bowls, and desserts. Grab a handful and reap benefits such as help with weight loss and better heart health.
How to Eat Dry Fruits?
Here are some simple ways to include dry fruits in your diet:
- Eat them in the morning or as a mid-afternoon or evening snack instead of processed or refined foods such as namkeen.
- Mix different types into desserts such as dry fruit ladoos.
- Make homemade protein bars with dry fruits to eat before or after a workout.
- Add them as toppings or crunchy additions to other dishes.
And now if you’re wondering, “How much dry fruits to eat in a day?” the answer is to limit your consumption to a serving of 28 g of mixed dry fruits per day to reap the benefits and not go overboard!
Don’t Have Time To Read?
- Dry fruits are traditionally fruits that have been dried or dehydrated such as raisins, dates, apricots, etc. However, in India, the term dry fruits also includes nuts such as almonds, walnuts, cashews, etc.
- Dry fruits or nuts are nutritionally dense, with healthy fats, protein, fibre, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that promote overall health.
- Some of the major benefits of eating dry fruits include reduced risk of developing chronic diseases, lower levels of triglycerides and LDL or “bad” cholesterol in your blood, reduced inflammation, weight loss, improved heart health, and better management of diabetes.
- Simple ways to include dry fruits in your diet are as a mid-afternoon or evening snack, a dessert in the form of dry fruit ladoos, homemade protein bars before or after a workout or as toppings or additions to other dishes.
- Use the Phable Care App to consult India’s leading nutritionists and dieticians to get real-time remote care from the comfort of your home. Check out our store to order tasty treats, breakfast foods, health juices, snacks and more!
Friendly Asked Questions
You can have a serving of mixed dry fruits daily for reaping the most health benefits. One serving or 28 g of mixed dry fruits including 1-2 pieces each of almonds, cashews, walnuts, dates peanuts, etc. can be taken with a cup of milk or tea.
The best time to eat dry fruits to reap their maximum benefits is either in the morning after soaking them overnight or as a snack in between meals.
Although dry fruits are safe for consumption by most people, if you have a health issue such as digestive problems, diabetes, high blood pressure etc, it is better to consult a doctor about your intake of dry fruits.
Yes, you can eat dry fruits every day. However, they are calorie-rich foods so you should watch your portion size. Try to include a variety of dry fruits and not the same one into your diet every day.
Some of the dry fruits that have a very high protein content are walnuts, almonds, cashews, peanuts, and pistachios.
Yes, you can eat dry fruits on an empty stomach. There are no restrictions on the timing of the consumption of dry fruits.
You can eat a handful, meaning 5 to 8 almonds per day to reap its benefits. It is best to limit overconsumption of any food and the same goes for dry fruits like almonds, which are calorie-rich foods.
Yes, dried fruits are healthy as they are made from drying or dehydrating fruits and often have a more concentrated nutrient content when compared to fresh fruits. Dry fruits benefit your health as they are a rich source of nutrients such as protein, fibre, healthy fats, and antioxidants.
Dry fruits are extremely beneficial for your overall health. Some of the health benefits of consuming dry fruits on a regular basis include a reduced risk of developing chronic diseases, lower levels of triglycerides and LDL or “bad” cholesterol in your blood, reduced inflammation, weight loss, improved heart health, and better management of diabetes.