SERVING SIZE: 1 tbsp
SPECIES: Prunus dulcis
How Can Almonds Make You Feel Great?
Strength & Energy Building TonicLong before the agricultural revolution, humans feasted off nuts. This ancestral food is still one of the best ways to strengthen your body. Warm and creamy almonds contain more protein per serving than any other nut (20% by weight). That makes them an important protein source for vegetarians and those wishing to build muscle mass. Their calcium and magnesium content supports smooth muscle function, including the heart. Their rich nutritional profile makes both serves as a blood tonic for anemia and to nourish the bones.
Unlike chilis that ignite a short-lived metabolic flare-up, almonds nourish a deep, slow burning metabolic fire that simmers with lasting warmth. Almond's hearty fuel will sustain you through a long workday. Their mild stimulating qualities keep you warm even as the thermometer starts to dip in Autumn.
Calm Your NervesMost of us feel a little frazzled these days. We live demanding lives, we're on the go, and some of us struggle with an over-active nervous system. Ayurveda has some unique tips to ground your nerves. Every nerve in your body is coated in fats, called the myelin sheath, that insulates, protects, and guides the electric impulses of your neurons. Without this protective fatty barrier, your signals will go haywire, and be scattered. Nourishing this fatty layer of the nervous system is key to settling your mind.
Almonds are rich in natural oils and fatty acids, from 36 to 60% by weight. Almonds and sunflower seed are also the top two whole food sources of fat soluble vitamin E. By adding almonds to your diet, you will feel calmer and more at ease, and improve your ability to think a little clearer. Almond also contains minerals like magnesium that support muscle relaxation. In the ancient science of Ayurveda, almonds have been used to preserve intelligence for thousands of years. To receive the brain building benefits of almonds, simply soak, peel and enjoy 10 almonds daily. Note: Despite their oily nature, they are generally good for those with high cholesterol. So don't shy away from healthy fats - you need them!
Sexy Nuts?When it comes to its aphrodisiac and reproductive support qualities, almonds are second to none. Don't you find its sweet flavor and aroma arousing? There's probably a reason so many beauty products contain almond oil. Celibate men beware - eating almonds encourages a build-up of "vigor" or Ojas (the vital nectar of life). If this vigor remains "pent-up" it may cause great discomfort in the prostate and testicles. Almonds are also symbols of male fertility and its high zinc content aids in sexual potency. Sexually active men should drink a glass of Almond Milk with Saffron (homemade) after ejaculation to rebuild fluids and vitality.
The Beauty of AlmondsLooking for soft, firm, supple skin? Adding almonds into your diet will nourish you from within. Topical uses are also very popular, as the rich almond oil adds luster, promotes hair growth and reduces breakage. Almond oil provides moisture to dry skin, helping to reduce the signs of aging. You will notice a youthful glow to your skin, and who doesn't want that?
Nutritional Information & OtherAlmonds are high in oil, fatty acids, protein, calcium, magnesium, potassium, copper, iron, phosphorous, zinc & vitamins B1 and E. Like most tonics, almonds are heavy & concentrated, and may provoke stagnation in the upper GI. Soaking almonds, then preparing them with cinnamon and other spices is a great way to improve their digestibility. Almonds oily nature lubricates the intestines. Together with it's high fiber, almonds are a general laxative encouraging regular elimination.
The skins of almonds provoke pitta dosha due to high tannic acid content. Due to their energizing nature, do not consume almonds if you have high pitta in the blood. Peeled almonds are sattvic.
Almonds contain goitogens, which may inhibit thyroid function, so we suggest cooked almonds (cooking neutralizes the goitogens) for those concerned with thyroid issues. Since almonds also contain zinc, roasted almonds may improve thyroid function. In chinese medicine, almonds are used to move stagnant lung qi.
BUYING & PREPARATION
If desired, soak almonds for thirty six hours before eating to help activate the seed. We also recommend peel the skin; it contains tannic acids that are stimulating and irritating. After soaking, a few minutes in hot water makes the skins easy to peel. Pinch the butt of the almond to make the seed pop out of the skin.
COOKING ALMONDSBrowse Recipes
Although almonds are a great addition to desserts, diabetics can safely indulge. You won't get any spikes in blood sugar with these little delights. Almond flour is also a fitting substitute for diabetic friendly cakes and cookies. For those with celiac, Almond flour is a great gluten-free substitute for wheat. Allergic to peanuts? Try almond butter. Almonds are cooling and easier to digest than peanuts. For our lactose intolerant readers, your palate will love the creaminess of almond milk. Soak a cup of almonds overnight in water, puree until smooth, then strain for your very own homemade almond milk treat.
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WHY SHOULD YOU EAT AYURVEDICALLY?Eating Ayurvedically makes you feel nourished and energized. An Ayurvedic diet is tailored to your individual body type and the specific imbalances you are working with at any given time. Foods that supplement your specific body type’s needs and digest easily create your menu. Watch as you eat less but feel more satisfied because what you are eating truly nourishes you. Since Ayurveda believes all disease begins in the digestive tract, food is your first medicine. By eating a healthy diet that’s ideal for your body, you experience optimal health.
Are Almonds Good for Me?
Experiences are PersonalExperiences vary according to the person and constitution. Individual results may vary. The list of actions below has not be approved by the FDA and should not be used to treat a medical condition.
Bone & Joint:
BONE-TONICAn herb that strengthens the bones and joints.
Energy Vitality Strength:
BUILDS-STAMINAPromotes strength, endurance and resistance in the body. Rebuilds weak tissues after a time of depletion.
SATISFIES-STOMACHProvides a sense of gratification and fullness in the stomach.
STIMULATES-ENERGYThis category groups thyroid and adrenal stimulating herbs
NUTRITIVEAn herb that is strengthening and nourishing.
TONICA tonic herb strengthens tissue, often restoring healthy function. Tonics usually target a specific organ, tissue, or system ie: brain, muscle or respiratory tonic.
Heart & Circulation:
BLOOD-TONICAn herb that produces more blood cells in the body or otherwise strengthens blood. Helpful for anemia and other types of deficiency.
Mind, Stress & Sleep:
GROUNDINGEncourages feelings of stability and heaviness. Makes you feel settled, mentally relaxed. Mildly sedates the nervous system to ease stress. Can bring a spacey or anxious person back to earth.
BRAIN-TONICAn herb that strengthens the brain, thereby improves either mental function, stamina, or stability.
APHRODISIACHerbs that increase sexual arousal through various actions including increased circulation, relaxation, stimulation, or tonics that strengthen glandular health.
BUILDS-SEMENHerbs that increase the production of semen, often by rebuilding fluids in general.
PROMOTES-VIRILITYEncourages virility and potency.
Skin Care & Beauty:
SKIN-TONICAn herb that strengthens and nourishes skin, improving tone, color, moisture and complexion.
MUSCLE-RELAXANTHerbs that relax muscles. Helpful for chronic pain or tension as well as healing from physical trauma.
GENERAL-LAXATIVEPromotes a bowel movement. General laxative is an umbrella term that refers to several different types of laxatives...
High Fiber Laxative
HIGH-FIBER-LAXATIVEA class of laxative that adds bulk and water to stools. The size of a stool stimulates peristalsis and the stool passes more easily through the colon. It is important to drink plenty of water when using high fiber laxatives, as they can be dehydrating.
MUSCLE-TONICHerbs that strengthen and tone muscle tissue. Helpful for people recovering from long term illness and debility, or after a sprain.
(Not you? Keep scrolling!)
Are you struggling with your health?Learn how to feel your best by balancing your diet in just a week.
How to Use Food AyurvedicallyHOW DOES EATING AYURVEDICALLY MAKE YOU FEEL?
Eating Ayurvedically makes you feel nourished and energized. Food digests with ease when right for your body type (dosha). Healthy digestion is seen as the cornerstone of well-being in Ayurveda. Healthy digestion generally prevents illness. If you do get sick, a strong digestive fire reduces the severity of illness and increases your resilience. It also improves your mood. Once you begin eating Ayurvedically, you will feel refreshed, vital and strong.
View Other Ingredients for Autumn-WinterAlmonds is recommended for Autumn-Winter. Check out these other Autumn-Winter foods here.
Comments & Impressions of 'Almonds'Do you like 'almonds'? Why or why not? What makes it unique? Is there something you'd like to know about 'almonds'?
(5.00 out of 5 stars) 2 reviews, 209 likes
Almond skins are brown because they contain tannins, an acidic and astringent substance that provokes Vata and Pitta. The cyanide in almond skins is toxic to the liver and starves the cells of oxygen (prana).
Skinned, the creamy, gentle, oily sweetness of almonds is wonderful for Vata in small amounts. But even skinned nuts can provoke Vata because their density makes them difficult to digest. Almonds are much easier to digest when soaked for thirty six hours first.
Oily nuts, when eaten in excess, stress the liver and may increase Pitta. Nuts, brown rice and other foods are also high in arginine, an amino acid that encourages proliferation of the virus that causes cold sores in infected indviduals.
My question is about almonds. I know I'm supposed to soak them overnight and peel them, but that's hard to do when I'm traveling, and I'm wondering if almonds with skins which have been soaked and dehydrated (like you can buy from some health food stores) are ok for Pittas. My other almond question is, is almond butter ok for Pittas?
Sometimes I buy the almonds blanched. At my local supermarket, blanched almonds are actually cheaper than almonds with the skins. Pre soaking the skins and then rehydrating them greatly reduces the number of tannins, making them easier for Pitta Vata to digest. Almond butter usually contains the skins and can be aggravating for Pitta dosha.
Very interesting to find out recently that the majority of Almond farms are pasteurizing them through the mandate of FDA. The farmers markets and health food stores carry non-pasteurized almonds. The first 2 days of soaking, the water turns deep copper and soon clear. Very aromatic!
I find that both toasted almonds and soaked almonds are received well by my body. Does the toasting alter the tannins and cyanide in some way?
Yes - toasting the almonds does destroy the tannins.
I love almonds and would love to try some recipes but I am focusing on Kapha balancing. The guide says almonds increase Kapha. However, at the same time the skins provoke Vata and Pitta. For a Kapha imbalanced person, how should almonds be eaten if at all? Are almond milks a good alternative if taken warm?
Almonds are generally ok unless there is a strong Kapha imbalance. They should be chewed carefully and ideally taken with spices like cinnamon, cayeene, and cumin. Yes, warm almond milke with turmeric, ginger and cardamom is generally safe for Kapha. We have a number of almond drinks on the website that are Kapha pacifying. Enjoy!
After peeling the almond, how are they best stored?
Storing soaked or blanched almonds for an extended period should be down in a refrigerator, in a basin of water if they're still raw (uncooked). They don't store for very long, even if they're raw, in most households, because of the presence of naturally occurring microbes that float around and (naturally again) love almonds and all fresh foods. Adding turmeric powder or a little powdered food-grade clay can keep your soaked or hot water-blanched nuts fresher longer (and can then be drained/rinsed away when you decide to eat). Almonds can be hard on irritated stomachs, even if they've been soaked or blanched, so avoid them if you're trying to heal ulcers or tummy inflammation (unless blending them with fruit, honey, or more stomach-friendly ingredients). Almonds are one of the best things for increasing ojas! Consistently I've noticed that almonds brighten the following day better than vegetables, grains, other nuts - even most "ojas" foods! If you're feeling overburdened, stressed, and depressed because of depletion of ojas or vital fluids, take a night off of cooking and eat only soaked almonds and cinnamon-(raw)honey (or just raw honey) for dinner, skipping breakfast and only having a midday snack of organic fruit. You'll feel fantastic the next day, or my name's Charley.... (It's not!) Almonds combine well with meats, if you're eating them. Almonds are also delicious when gently toasted or fried with ghee - but always use enough oil to keep them from burning, and always after soaking/blanching! Almonds themselves are very good for the teeth and bones. Convalescent food can be made with ghee, rice, almonds, and a zucchini or regular squash - just cook the rice, add in the ghee and fry, then add your peeled almonds and vegetables, maybe a little salt or turmeric or black pepper (no garlic unless you have a bacterial infection), and ta-da! A very welcome meal when you're recovering from headache and fever or nausea. Buy your almonds organic, even though they're more expensive, because the non-organic almonds are more often than not fraught with pesticides, and contain less life energy. Some foods are so low in life energy that they can sap your own from you during digestion (though this risk mainly applies to processed foods, specifically to meats and long ago pasteurized products). Even when heat pasteurized or gas pasteurized, fresh organic almonds will maintain much of their life-promoting potency (because being seeds, they're very hardy). Almond mixes well with purely-sweet fruits like ripe banana and date, but it's also good when combined with less sweet nuts and seeds, fruit preserves, sweet potato, savory foods, and milk products (especially ice cream - but I'm not supposed to say that). Hope this helps!
Some of the best info ever on almonds. Thank you... Carla :-)
above almonds are marked as cold, in the text as heating. some other ayurvedic websites categorize them as hot and heating except one that states with skin as heating, pealed and soaked as cooling. can someone clarify that?
Niklas, there is some debate about this, and depending how they are used. Ground skinned almonds topically are cooling (as is Almond Oil). Eaten, they heat up metabolism but are cooling in the GI. With skins, they are hot.
Thank You John for the information! Seems it needs further and more precise understanding. Logical and very interesting! Best wishes and regards!
a traditional home remedy forThis information has not been validated by the FDA and should not be used to treat a medical condition.
Reproductive HealthAbortion (Past, Recent or Considering), Ejaculate 2+ times per week, Premature Ejaculation
Blood and CirculationAnemia, Heart Palpitations, Low energy, Sensitive to Alcohol, Thalassemia Minor
Mind Stress SleepAnxiety, fear, uncertainty, Weakness / Debility
SkinDry skin, Scaly / flaky skin, Thin skin
BonesHair loss, Lean muscles, Thin hair, Thin, brittle nails, Weak muscles
Weight LossHyperthyroid, Lose weight easily, Recent weight loss, Sunken, ribs showing
About the AuthorJohn Immel, the founder of Joyful Belly, teaches people how to have a healthy diet and lifestyle with Ayurveda. His approach to Ayurveda exudes a certain ease, which many find enjoyable and insightful. His online course Balance Your Ayurvedic Diet in a Week provides tools for gracefully healing with Ayurveda to thousands. John also directs Joyful Belly's School of Ayurveda , which specializes in digestive tract pathology & Ayurvedic nutrition. John and his wife Natalie recently published Explore Your Hunger: A Guide to Hunger, Appetite & Food.
John's interest in Ayurveda and digestive tract pathology was inspired by a complex digestive disorder acquired from years of international travel, including his public service work in South Asia. John's commitment to the detailed study of digestive disorders reflects his zeal to get down to the roots of the problem. His hope and belief in the capacity of each & every client to improve their quality of life is nothing short of a personal passion. John's creativity in the kitchen and delight in cooking for others comes from his family oriented upbringing. In addition to his certification in Ayurveda, John holds a bachelor's degree in mathematics from Harvard University.
John enjoys sharing Ayurveda within the context of his Catholic roots, and finds Ayurveda gives him an opportunity to participate in the healing mission of the Church. Jesus expressed God's love by feeding and healing the sick. That kindness is the fundamental ministry of Ayurveda as well.