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Dry fruits & their health benefits

सुकामेवा : तुमची मुलं दिवसभर शाळा, ट्युशन्स, प्रोजेक्ट या चक्रात अडकलेले असतात ?मग त्यांना अक्रोड , सुके अंजीर , किसमिस व जर्दाळू यासारखा सुकामेवा खायला द्या. परीक्षेला निघण्यापुर्वी तसेच छोटा खाऊचा डब्बा म्हणून मुठभर सुकामेवा खाणे मुलांच्या आरोग्यासाठी हितकारी आहे. सुक्यामेव्यात नैसर्गिक रुपातील साखर असल्याने त्यातुन मुलांना उर्जा मिळते.

Here are a few health benefits of dry fruits. Snack on them to stay healthy.

Written by Poorva Chavan |Updated : November 2, 2015 1:33 PM IST

Dry fruits are extremely useful for maintaining overall health and are beneficial in warding off certain diseases. They are rich in monounsaturated fatty acids which make them ideal for weight loss and help burn belly fat. Research has also shown that daily consumption of dry fruits cuts the death risk by 20%. They are also known to control hypertension and hence help beat stress.

Cashew nuts: Cashews have a wide range of health benefits including lowering hypertension and controlling diabetes due to their low glycaemic index. They are also rich in proteins and high in magnesium, which help in improving muscle strength.

Tip: Cashew nuts can be consumed raw or in roasted form and taste best when salted. They can also be made into a paste and used to make gravies for your vegetables and curries.

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Almonds: They not only aid in weight loss but also help in lowering cholesterol and lipids in the body. Their high fibre content and probiotic properties help maintain a healthy digestive system and are also known to rejuvenate the skin and promote hair growth. You may also like to read benefits of soaked almonds.

Tip: Almonds can be soaked in some water overnight, peeled and consumed the next day. They also make a very attractive garnish for desserts.

Pistachios: The health benefits of this dry fruit include maintaining hemoglobin levels and fighting the signs of ageing as it is high in vitamin E. Pistachios also help you maintain good eyesight and boost immunity. The vitamin A & E content impart anti-inflammatory properties to pistachios, which make them a natural substitute to treat minor inflammations.

Tip: Roasted and salted pistachios are a handy snack. You can add them to your fruit salads, ice creams and use them while baking muffins to add a crunch to your dessert. Here are some more tips on how to use them.

Walnuts: Walnuts are a powerhouse of nutrition. They are known to induce sleep and are great to improve sleeping pattern. Walnuts are also good to help you lose weight as they contain essential nutrients and provide satiety. Apart from that, pistachios help improve strength of hair, prevent hair loss, improve memory and keep dementia at bay. Known to help increase sperm quality, walnuts are great for diabetics as it does not increase one's blood sugar drastically and still helps maintain overall health.

Tip: Walnutscan be ground into a coarse powder and can be mixed with your breakfast cereal or oats as it imparts a very nutty taste. You can also use the ground walnuts to thicken gravies and give them a rich texture.

Raisins: The sugar content in raisins provides instant energy and helps lift your mood. Also, their high calcium content prevents osteoporosis and in general maintains good bone health. Raisins are also known to have anti-bacterial properties which help in fighting minor infections, prevent dental cavities and bad breath. Apart from this, they have cholesterol-lowering properties, making them ideal for weight loss. Also, the high fibre content of raisins make them an excellent snack to improve digestion. You may also like to read the other health benefits of raisins.

Tip: Raisins are also a go-to snack as they are easy to use. You can not only add them to your kheers or payasams but also to biryanis and pilafs, which gives them a very rich flavor.

Dates: Dates not only help in maintaining blood sugar levels but also aid in digestion. Their high iron content makes them an ideal supplement for combating anemia. Also, the high fibre content helps improve digestion and should be consumed daily to improve overall health.

Tip: Dates are a very handy fruit and can be eaten directly. You can also puree them and use them as a sweetener instead of using sugar.

Figs: The high fibre content in these dry fruits makes them ideal for consumption to treat constipation and Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) maintaining a healthy digestive system. These anti-oxidant rich nuts destroy the free radicals produced in the body and are also known to improve reproductive health and are a good dietary supplement to resolve any fertility issues. Owing to their high iron content they fight iron-deficiency anemia and also help regulate blood sugar levels and control diabetes.

Tip: Dried figs are an excellent snack and munching on them gives instant energy. You can eat them along with milk in the morning or add them to your porridge or oatmeal.

Dried apricots: Consuming these non-native fruits help reduce the risk of developing fatty liver disease. Their high vitamin A content also improves eyesight. Apricots not only help reduce the risk of Age-Related Macular Degeneration (ARMD) but also help cure it. Also, they help fight inflammation and improve digestion. Apart from fighting anemia they also reduce the risk of heart disease.

Tip: Poach apricots and mix them with your yogurt or ice creams just before eating. You can also include apricots in your diet with this healthy apricot shrikhand recipe and satisfy your sweet tooth.

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OsteoporosisImage source: Getty Images

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