There are primarily two alternatives when choosing nuts: raw and roasted. Protein and carbohydrate content are comparable in both forms.
Raw nuts are higher in fibre compared to roasted nuts. Fibre promotes digestive health, helps lower cholesterol levels, and keeps you feeling full longer.
Raw nuts preserve more of their naturally occurring nutrients, such as antioxidants and vitamin E, and these nutrients have various health benefits.
Raw nuts also contain fewer calories, less fat, and less sodium compared to roasted nuts.
Raw nuts have less flavour, aroma, and crunch compared to roasted nuts. They may also undergo exposure to PPO during pasteurisation, which can result in the formation of harmful free radicals.
Raw nuts contain natural compounds that reduce their digestibility, potentially causing bloating and stomach upset.
Roasted nuts have more calories and fat per gram compared to raw nuts.
Roasting increases the fat and caloric content of most nuts, except for pistachios. Frying can increase the fatty acid content of almonds but not pistachios or cashews.
Roasted nuts have an enhanced flavour and overall sensory experience. The dry-heating process of roasting also makes the nuts easier to digest for some individuals.
Roasting the nuts reduces the risk of exposure to harmful bacteria like Salmonella and E. coli.
Roasted nuts can also contain trace amounts of trans fats and have a high sodium content, which can be unhealthy in excess.
Roasted nuts have an increased risk of oxidation and free radical exposure during storage, which can affect their nutritional value. When consumed in large quantities, it can also expose individuals to the carcinogen "acrylamide".
Both raw and roasted nuts are good sources of beneficial nutrients such as Vitamin E, manganese, and omega-3 and 6 fatty acids. However, the method of processing can affect the nutrient content and potential health risks of each type.
Incorporating nuts into a balanced diet can provide numerous health benefits, but it is essential to consume them in appropriate portions to avoid overconsumption of calories and fat.