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Health Benefits of Macadamia Nuts

author avatar Dr. Eric Berg 03/05/2021

Macadamia nuts are exceptionally healthy and keto-friendly nuts. They are a rich source of nutrients and health-promoting fats that reduce inflammation and help you lose weight. 


Let's look at the health benefits of macadamia nuts and why you should regularly include them in your Healthy Keto® diet.

Macadamia nuts in wooden bowl

What are macadamia nuts?


Macadamia nuts are tree nuts harvested from the tree species Macadamia integrifolia. While macadamia trees are native to Australia, most macadamia nuts are now grown in Hawaii. 


Macadamia nuts are one of the most expensive nuts in the world. It takes years for a macadamia tree to mature, and harvest is labor intensive and requires hand-picking ripe, whole macadamia nuts. 


Macadamia nuts have a rich, buttery flavor with hints of sweetness and a creamy texture. They can be eaten raw, dry roasted, or salted and are a perfect ingredient for many keto recipes. 


Like most nuts, macadamia nuts are exceptionally healthy. They are rich in nutrients and heart-healthy fats, and research suggests that regularly consuming nuts reduces your risk of developing diseases, including heart disease, metabolic syndrome, and obesity. 


Watch the video below to learn more about the excellent health benefits of macadamia nuts. 

Are macadamia nuts keto-friendly?


Macadamia nuts are keto-friendly and a tasty addition to your diet. They are low in carbs and high in heart-healthy monounsaturated fats.


Consuming macadamia nuts is great for your health. However, macadamia nuts are high in calories, and excessive amounts can quickly exceed your energy needs resulting in weight gain. 


Overeating nuts is one of the most common weight loss mistakes.


Macadamia nut nutrition facts  


Macadamia nuts are on the Keto Food List because they contain high amounts of healthy fat and dietary fiber and are low in net carbs.


One cup of macadamia nuts contains the following:

 

  • 962 calories

  • 97 g total fat

    • 79 g monounsaturated fat

    • 2 g polyunsaturated fat

    • 16 g saturated fat

  • 19 g total carbs

    • 12 g fiber

    • 7 g net carbs

  • 11 g protein


Macadamia nuts are rich in essential nutrients, including fat-soluble vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that support a healthy body. 


Macadamia nuts are an excellent source of:


bowl-macadamia-nut-oil-nuts

Eight benefits of macadamia nuts


Macadamia nuts are rich in essential nutrients, fiber, and healthy fats. They are nutritious and have a high-fat-to-low-carb ratio, making them an ideal keto-friendly nut with many health benefits. 


Here are eight reasons why you should eat macadamia nuts regularly.


1. Rich in omega-7 fats 

Macadamia nuts are one of the few dietary sources of palmitoleic acid, an unsaturated omega-7 fatty acid with significant health benefits.


Scientific studies confirm that consuming foods high in palmitoleic acid supports healthy cholesterol levels, reduces inflammation, and can lower your risk of diabetes.


2. Nutritional powerhouse 

Macadamia nuts are a rich source of vitamins and minerals, including vitamins E and B1, copper, calcium, iron, magnesium, and manganese. 


Vitamin E is a potent antioxidant and protects your cells from oxidative damage linked to cancer development and premature aging. 


Copper, magnesium, and manganese are essential minerals that support your health. They promote healthy brain function, support your immune system and play crucial roles in energy metabolism.


3. Support healthy cholesterol 

Macadamias support healthy cholesterol levels. High amounts of monounsaturated fats in macadamia nuts raise levels of heart-healthy HDL cholesterol linked to lowering risk factors of heart diseases, including arterial plaque formation and inflammation. 


4. Control blood sugar 

Regularly eating macadamia nuts is linked to a lower risk of high blood sugar and diabetes. Monounsaturated fats and minerals, including magnesium and manganese, promote insulin sensitivity.


Insulin sensitivity determines how effectively your body can regulate blood sugar balance. Balanced insulin and healthy blood sugar levels reduce your risk of weight gain, inflammation, diabetes, and metabolic syndrome. 


Palmitoleic acid in macadamia nuts also stimulates your pancreas to produce insulin. This promotes healthy blood sugar regulation, and palmitoleic acid’s anti-inflammatory properties counteract inflammation caused by elevated blood glucose. 

heart-healthy nuts

4. Reduce inflammation

Macadamia nuts have a unique nutritional profile. High amounts of healthy fats, in combination with antioxidants and essential nutrients, help your body to reduce inflammation. 


Antioxidants, including vitamin E and flavonoids in macadamia nuts, protect you from the harmful effects of free radicals. 


Free radicals are metabolic by-products that can damage your cells and tissues, triggering inflammation and increasing your risk of heart disease and Alzheimer's. 


5. Promote weight loss

Macadamia nuts are rich in healthy fats and dietary fiber, which promote satiety and curb hunger. Regularly consuming nuts helps weight loss and supports weight maintenance. 


6. Support heart health 

Studies show that a diet high in tree nuts lowers your overall risk of heart disease. 


Heart-healthy fats and antioxidants in macadamia nuts promote healthy cholesterol levels and reduce inflammation. This helps your cardiovascular health and lowers the risk of high blood pressure, stroke, and heart attacks.  

 

7. Improve digestive health 

Macadamia nuts are beneficial for your digestive health. They contain high amounts of soluble fiber, a type of dietary fiber that forms a gel in your digestive tract. 


Soluble fiber slows digestion, increases mineral absorption, and helps your body to eliminate toxins and waste products.


Soluble fiber also provides the fuel for the beneficial bacteria residing in your colon. This supports the growth and proliferation of your intestinal microflora, helps a robust immune system, is linked to improved moods, and lowers your risk of colon cancer. 


8. Promote brain health 

Tree nuts, including macadamia nuts, are linked to healthy brain function and cognition. 


It's believed that the combination of healthy fatty acids, essential minerals, and antioxidants in tree nuts protects the brain tissue from harmful oxidation and promotes healthy neurons and blood vessels.


Frequent consumption of tree nuts appears to lower your risk of depression, increase learning capacity, and support memory function. 



How to store macadamia nuts


The monounsaturated fats in macadamia nuts can quickly become rancid, and it's best to store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator. 


You can also store macadamia nuts in the freezer to keep them fresh for up to six months. 


If macadamia nuts show signs of mold, appear dry, or taste bitter, it's time to throw them out.

Macadamia nuts on tree

Key takeaways


Macadamia nuts are keto-friendly and nutritious tree nuts that support your health and well-being, reduce your risk of heart disease, and help you maintain a healthy waistline.


Macadamias are one of the few foods containing palmitoleic acid, a heart-healthy omega-7 fatty acid that promotes blood sugar control, weight loss, and a healthy cardiovascular system. 


Regularly consuming macadamia nuts is a healthy choice, but remember that macadamias are calorie-dense, and eating too many can quickly exceed your energy requirements and cause weight gain.  



FAQ


1. Are macadamia nuts healthy?

Yes, macadamia nuts are very healthy. Regularly eating macadamia nuts is linked to a lower risk of diseases, including heart disease, Alzheimer's disease, diabetes, and metabolic syndrome. 


Heart-healthy fats and essential nutrients in macadamia nuts promote healthy blood sugar and cholesterol levels, reduce inflammation, and help maintain a healthy weight. 


2. How many carbs are in macadamia nuts?

One cup of macadamia nuts contains 7 grams of net carbs. 


Macadamia nuts contain more carbs than other nuts but provide a lot of fat. The high amounts of fat buffer the carb’s impact on your blood sugar and insulin levels, making macadamia nuts an excellent keto-friendly choice. 


3. Can I have macadamia nuts on keto?

Yes, macadamias are keto-friendly nuts. They are high-fat, low-carb, and rank among the most nutritious, keto-approved nuts. 


4. Can I eat macadamia nuts every day?

You can eat macadamia nuts daily as part of your Healthy Keto diet. But do remember that macadamia nuts are calorie-dense and can quickly lead to weight gain if consumed in excess.  


5. How many macadamia nuts can I eat a day?

Around 1/4 cup of macadamia nuts daily is ideal to benefit from macadamia nut’s health-promoting properties without the risk of weight gain.


6. Which is healthier, almonds or macadamia nuts?

Both macadamias and almonds are nutritious nuts and rich sources of calcium, iron, and fiber. 


Almonds provide heart-healthy fats and essential nutrients, including folate and vitamin B2. However, macadamia nuts are the only nuts that contain palmitoleic acid. This heart-healthy omega-7 fatty acid is linked to a reduced risk of diabetes and heart disease and promotes weight loss and healthy blood sugar levels.


7. What is the best type of nut to have on keto?

The best nuts on keto are pecans, Brazil nuts, macadamia nuts, and walnuts. These varieties are rich in healthy fats and essential nutrients and low in carbs, making them safe on keto.


8. How do I store macadamia nuts? 

Store macadamia nuts in an airtight container in the refrigerator to prevent them from going rancid. You can also keep them in the freezer for up to six months.


9. Are macadamia nuts toxic for my pets?

Yes, macadamia nuts are toxic for dogs and cats. Macadamia nut ingestion can cause serious adverse health effects for your pets, including muscle weakness and paralysis of the hind legs.

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