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Nuts have featured heavily in many diets as the years have gone on, offering a quick energy boost and being hailed as a significantly healthier snack than some alternatives.  This is fine however a snack portion and really going at the nuts are two different things.

Have you ever, after a nut binge, found that your digestive system seems to be sluggish (at best), and that perhaps your stomach seems upset with you? There are scientific reasons to explain that and to show why limiting your nut intake could be a good thing.

Did you know that typically nuts contain a high level of omega 6 fats as well as the compound phytates and that these combined typically are not overly gut friendly. Too much and your digestive system will start to suffer as phytates bind dietary minerals including iron, zinc, calcium and more, essentially slowing down their adsorption rate, 

Omega 6 fatty acids are one of the essential fatty acidsand are called essential because our bodies don't naturally make our own and therefore need to source this fatty acid from food. While fatty acids such as these are essential to gain the maximum benefit and lose the downsides you need to be looking at a balance. A fairly equal balance between Omega 3 and Omega 6 is key here and yet currently the average intake ratio between Omega 3 and Omega 6 sees Omega 6 intake being approximately 30:1 and Omega 3 10:1.

This imbalance comes down to what a typical Western diet looks like and this is where we, as those in control of what we ingest can make powerful changes. Obviously if you are faced with the choice of a triple chocolate cake and a handful of nuts the nuts are the healthier choice and as a snack or small portion meal ingredient their benefits are clear. What needs to be alsoconsidered is the portion size and frequency of nuts in your diet.

Grains also contain phytates as well as gluten and lectin which is why many nutritionists are now suggesting we reduce these in our diet. If you are doing this and enjoying nuts in a moderate way so as to gain Omega 6 and avoid mineral malabsorption you are already doing great.

Try it out, if you are someone who eats a lot of nuts and perhaps has the digestive niggles many have try reducing your intake and see what happens.