What’s the best time of the day to eat walnuts?

The best time to eat a handful of walnuts is between meals, on an empty stomach, as a healthy snack. Walnuts can keep us full for hours, without spiking blood sugar levels. Also, we can eat walnuts in the morning, before bed, or after exercise.

Eat walnuts as a healthy snack between meals

Certainly, the best time to eat a handful of walnuts (about 7 walnuts) is between meals. Walnuts can keep you full for a long time. They promote satiety, as they’re rich in protein and fiber.

Foods high in water, fiber, and protein are the most filling. Therefore, you can drink a glass of water with your walnuts, or eat them with a fruit. Most fruits are mostly water.[1]

Moreover, we can eat walnuts on an empty stomach. They don’t spike blood sugar levels. They have a very low glycemic index of 15. In fact, walnuts are mainly healthy fat, protein, and fiber. They have less than 3 g of sugars per 100g! They’re keto-friendly.

Furthermore, you could eat walnuts with bread or any other carbohydrate-rich food. Walnuts can reduce the postprandial glycemic response.[2]

Actually, walnut consumption may increase the risk of type 2 diabetes.[3]

Walnuts are good for weight loss

Walnuts are good for weight loss despite their high calorie content.

Reasonable amounts of walnut as part of a well-balanced diet can decrease body weight and Body Mass Index. First, fiber in walnuts increases satiety because it delays gastric emptying. Protein in walnuts can also keep us full for hours.

Furthermore, fiber, protein, and healthy fat in walnuts increase thermogenesis! In addition, incomplete mastication of walnuts leads to loss of energy via feces.[4]

So, people who follow a sedentary life can eat a handful of walnuts between meals to lose weight. Active people or athletes can eat 2 handfuls.

A great time to eat walnuts is before bed

Moreover, you can eat walnuts as a late night snack. Walnuts can help you sleep better at night. They’re packed with compounds, which relax the muscle and relieve stress. Most noteworthy, walnuts are among the richest common foods high in melatonin, which in known as the sleep hormone!

You should be very cautious with portion sizes, though. Overeating before bed can make you fat.

You can eat walnuts in the morning

Another great time to eat walnuts is in the morning. Walnuts provide steady levels of energy for hours.

Consuming walnuts at breakfast on an empty stomach prevents blood sugars spikes! Actually, as walnuts are low in net carbs, they can regulate glucose levels. Thus, consuming walnuts with other favorite carbohydrate-rich foods, such as cereals, at breakfast is good for you.

Also, walnuts have many antioxidant compounds, such as polyphenols and melatonin. Walnuts contain more than 20 mmol antioxidants per 100g.[5,6]

We should eat foods which increase the antioxidant capacity of the body first thing in the morning. Antioxidants help the body fight oxidative stress due to air pollution, sunlight radiation, or smoking.[7,8,9]

You can eat walnuts after exercise

Also, a great time to eat walnuts is after exercise. They’re rich in antioxidant phytochemicals, which have a beneficial effect on recovery from exercise-induced muscle damage.[10]

Strenuous workouts may lead to muscle damage, oxidative stress, and inflammation, which may be accompanied by muscle weakness and muscle soreness. Antioxidants in walnuts may attenuate these side effects.

In addition, walnut consumption may naturally increase steroid hormones, like testosterone. Even a small dose of 15 g of walnuts (4 walnuts) a day can be beneficial for athletes. These benefits are mainly due to the high amounts of omega-3s in walnuts.[11]

A handful of walnuts provides approximately 2.78 g of omega-3s. This dose is higher than the recommended daily intake!

Actually, there are only a few foods high in omega-3s. Walnuts, flaxseeds, chia seeds, and avocado are the best common plant-based sources of omega-3s.

What’s the worst time of the day to have walnuts?

On the contrary, the worst time of the day to eat walnuts is right before exercise. Walnuts are high in fiber, which takes time to be digested. Athletes should avoid consuming foods high in fiber right before a workout. Fiber may cause stomach discomfort, bloating, gas, or many other adverse effects.

How many walnuts can I eat a day?

A handful of walnuts (about 7 walnuts) a day is enough for most people. It’s enough to skyrocket the daily intake of omega-3s.

Also, walnuts are packed with minerals, such as iron, copper, calcium, zinc, magnesium, and many more.

But, we should consume reasonable amounts of walnuts. A handful of walnuts has 185 calories. High amounts can make us gain weight. Certainly, active people and athletes could consume up to 2 handfuls of walnuts a day, as part of a well-balanced diet, without gaining weight.

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