Here is What You Should Know About Almond Flour
Almond flour is a well-known replacement for traditional wheat flour. It’s low in carbohydrates, filled with nutrients and possess a little sweeter taste. Almond flour may additionally provide much more health benefits compared to traditional wheat flour, like reducing “bad” LDL cholesterol and insulin resistance. This short article explores the health benefits of almond flour and whether it’s a healthier alternative to other types of flour.
What Is Almond Flour?
Almond flour is made from ground almonds. The method involves blanching almonds in boiling water to eliminate the skins, then grinding and sifting them into a nice flour.
Almond flour is not like an almond meal, even though their names are frequently used interchangeably. Almond meal is manufactured by grinding almonds with their skins intact, which results in a coarser flour. This difference is very important in recipes in which texture makes a big difference.
Almond Flour Is Incredibly Nutritious
Almond flour is abundant with nutrients. 1 ounce (28 grams) contains:
• Calories – 163
• Fat – 14.2 grams (9 of which are monounsaturated)
• Protein – 6.1 grams
• Carbs – 5.6 grams
• Dietary fiber – 3 grams
• Vitamin E – 5% of the RDI
• Manganese – 31% of the RDI
• Magnesium – 19% of the RDI
• Copper 16% of the RDI
• Phosphorus 13% of the RDI
Almond flour is especially high in vitamin E, a group of fat-soluble compounds that work as antioxidants within the body.
They prevent damage from dangerous molecules known as free radicals, which speed up aging and raise your risk of heart disease and cancer. As a matter of fact, several studies have associated higher vitamin E intakes to lower rates of heart disease and Alzheimer’s.
Magnesium is yet another nutrient that’s contained in almond flour. It’s included in many processes in your body and even may provide many benefits, such as improved blood sugar control, reduced insulin resistance, and lower blood pressure.
Almond Flour Is Better for Your Blood Sugar
Foods made out of refined wheat are full of carbs but low in fat and fiber. This could trigger high spikes in blood sugar levels, followed by quick drops, which can make you tired, hungry and craving foods high in sugar and calories. On the other hand, almond flour is low in carbs but high in healthy fats and fiber. These characteristics provide a low glycemic index, which means it releases sugar gradually into your blood to give a sustained source of energy.
As pointed out above, almond flour has an incredibly high amount of magnesium — a mineral that plays numerous roles within your body, including controlling blood sugar. It’s estimated that between 25–38% of individuals with type 2 diabetes have a lack of magnesium, and fixing it through diet or supplements might considerably reduce blood sugar and improve insulin function. Actually, almond flour’s capability to improve insulin function may additionally affect people without type 2 diabetes who have either low magnesium levels or usual magnesium levels but are overweight. This might mean that almonds’ low glycemic qualities and high magnesium content can help control blood sugar in individuals with or without type 2 diabetes.
Almond Flour Is Gluten-Free
Wheat flours possess a protein known as gluten. It helps dough stay flexible and capture air during baking so that it rises and becomes fluffy.
Those who have celiac disease or perhaps a wheat intolerance cannot eat foods with gluten mainly because their body mistakes it as harmful.
For these people, the body generates an autoimmune response to remove gluten from the body. This response results in harm to the lining of the gut and can trigger symptoms like bloating, diarrhea, weight loss, skin rashes, and tiredness. Luckily , almond flour is both wheat-free and gluten-free, which makes it a fantastic alternative for baking for individuals who can’t tolerate wheat or gluten.
However, it’s always important to double check the packaging of almond flour you purchase. While almonds are naturally gluten-free, certain products could be contaminated with gluten.
Heart disease is the major reason for death around the world. It’s widely known that high blood pressure and LDL cholesterol levels (or the bad cholesterol) are risk markers for heart disease. Fortunately, foods you eat can have a significant effect on your blood pressure and LDL cholesterol, with many studies revealing that almonds can be very beneficial for both.
Analysis of 5 studies including 142 people discovered that people who enjoyed more almonds experienced an average decrease of 5.79 mg/dl in LDL cholesterol.
While this finding is encouraging, it might have been on account of other factors than simply eating more almonds.
For example, participants in the 5 studies do not stick to the same diet. Therefore, weight loss, which is also associated with lower LDL cholesterol, could have varied across the studies.
Moreover, magnesium deficiencies have been related to high blood pressure in both experimental and observational studies, and almonds are a fantastic source of magnesium. Despite the fact that several studies show that improving these deficiencies could help decrease blood pressure, they aren’t consistent. More research is required in this field to make stronger conclusions.
How to Use Almond Flour in Baking and Cooking
Almond flour is simple to bake with. In many baking recipes, you may simply replace regular wheat flour with almond flour. It could possibly also be used instead of bread crumbs to coat meats like fish, chicken, and beef.
The problem with using almond flour over wheat flour is usually that baked goods are definitely more flat and dense. This is because the gluten in wheat flour assist dough to stretch and traps much more air, which helps baked goods rise.
Almond flour is furthermore higher in calories compared to wheat flour, containing 163 calories in a single ounce ( 28 grams ), while wheat flour has 102 calories.
How Does It Compare to Alternatives?
Plenty of people use almond flour rather than popular alternatives like wheat and coconut flour. Below is information about how it compares.
Almond flour is significantly lower in carbs than wheat flours, but higher in fat. Like it or not, this means almond flour is higher in calories. Nevertheless, it makes up for this by being very nutritious. 1 ounce of almond flour offers you plenty of your daily values for vitamin E, manganese, magnesium, and fiber.
Almond flour is also gluten-free, while wheat flours are not , so it’s an outstanding option for those who have celiac disease or a wheat intolerance. In baking , almond flour could replace wheat flour at a 1:1 ratio, even though baked products made out of it are flatter and denser simply because they lack gluten.
Phytic acid, an antinutrient, is furthermore higher in wheat flours compared to almond flour, which contributes to the poorer absorption of nutrients from foods. It binds to nutrients like calcium, magnesium, zinc, and iron, and decreases the extent to which they can be absorbed by your gut.
Despite that almonds naturally possess a high phytic acid content in their skin, almond flour does not possess, because it loses its skin in the blanching process.
Like wheat flours, coconut flour contains more carbs and less fat compared to almond flour. Moreover it has lesser calories per ounce than almond flour, however, almond flour contains much more vitamins and minerals.
Both almond flour and coconut flour are gluten-free, however, coconut flour is a bit more difficult to bake with, because it soaks in moisture very well and can make the texture of baked goods dry and crumbly. And that means you might need to add more liquid to recipes when using coconut flour. Coconut flour is furthermore higher in phytic acid than almond flour, which can reduce how many nutrients your body can take in from foods that contain it.
Almond flour is an excellent alternative to wheat-based flours. It’s amazingly nutritious and gives you many potential health benefits, like a reduced risk of heart disease and improved blood sugar control.
Almond flour is furthermore gluten-free, making it an outstanding option for anyone with celiac disease or a wheat intolerance. In case you’re trying to find a low-carb flour that’s abundant with nutrients, almond flour is a smart choice.