National Nut Day – 22nd October
National Nut Day is observed on the 22nd of October which celebrates this healthy, delicious, and nutritious snack. Not only are nuts super tasty, but they also provide a variety of nutrients, energy, and other benefits to humans and animals alike! Nuts can be eaten raw, used in cooking, or roasted as a snack, and they can even be used to make oils. Yes, there is a day to celebrate nuts.
Nuts are excellent sources of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, selenium, potassium, magnesium, folate, copper, and vitamins E and B2, among other nutrients. According to several dietary studies, people who regularly consume raw unsalted nuts are less likely to suffer coronary heart disease. Almonds and walnuts, for instance, can help lower LDL cholesterol levels.
A nut in botany is a simple dry fruit with one seed (rarely two) in which the ovary wall becomes very hard (stony or woody) at maturity, and where the seed remains attached or fused with the ovary wall. A nut in cuisine is a much less restrictive category than a nut in botany, as the term is applied to many seeds that are not botanically true nuts. Any large, oily kernels found within a shell and used in food are commonly called nuts.
National Nut Day History
Nuts have been consumed since 10,000 B.C. People have been busting nuts open with rocks and other tools for tens of thousands of years now! During the 18th and 19th centuries in Europe, chestnuts became especially popular. They have been ground into pastes and flours, pressed into oils, and blended with water to produce beverages.
A farmer-owned company in the U.K. called Liberation Foods, which sells fair trade nuts, designated October 22 in 2015 as National Nut Day. Liberation Foods was founded in 2007 when small-scale nut producers from around the world got together to bring their lovingly grown produce to the European Fairtrade market. This holiday was created to raise awareness for nuts while promoting a healthy lifestyle.
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National Nut Day Facts
Historians found primitive nutcrackers and nut shells that are believed to have originated some 78,000 years ago during a particular archaeological dig in Israel.
- The oldest nut tree? Depending on how picky you are, it’s the Juglans family of deciduous trees and their walnut offspring. Proven to fight against cancer, delay aging, and assist with weight loss as part of a balanced diet, walnuts are certainly worth trying.
- Cashew shells are toxic. Raw cashews contain urushiol, a resin that becomes poisonous when eaten. The substance can also cause burns and rashes if it comes into contact with the skin. As such, to ensure they are safe to eat, cashews must be roasted or steamed.
- Pistachios aren’t a nut – they are a seed.
- Almonds boast of certain prebiotic properties courtesy of the awesome bumblebee. Almond seeds can’t grow on their own. Pollination comes around courtesy of bees. A new line of self-pollinating almond trees has been utilized to keep production going.
- Peanuts are not nuts. They are Legumes, a member of the “Pea” family.
- Researchers believe the ancient Aztecs started mashing up peanuts hundreds of years ago. A more modern version of Peanut Butter began to surface during the 1890s.
- The center of seeds, like pumpkins and squash, is called a “nut”.
- Chocolate manufacturers buy 40% of the world’s almond supply
Things to do on this day
Celebrate this day by snacking on your favorite nuts during the day and learn about how your favorite crunchy treat is benefiting your health. You can use this day to become more aware of your food is coming from and how to incorporate them into your meal. Try to make some recipes with nuts you can find many recipes online. Use the hashtag #NationalNutDay to post on social media.
Try these tips to add more nuts to your diet:
- Choose nuts instead of your typical less-healthy crunchy snack.
- Add nuts to yogurt, salads, or hot cereals for the perfect crunch.
- Mix nuts into your favorite smoothie for a richer, creamier texture.
- Put nut butter on your morning toast instead of butter or margarine.
- Slivered almonds are a tasty addition to sautéed green beans.
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