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Notable Health Benefits of Black Walnuts

by skytales | July 29, 2019

The ability to boost the immune system, protect against fungal diseases, prevent cancer, bring down blood pressure, stimulate circulation, reduce inflammation, boost heart health, and even cure skin conditions are some of the notable health benefits of black walnuts.

What are Black Walnuts?

Originated from U.S. and in certain Southern Canada parts, black walnuts are a large type of deciduous trees. Its female flowers bloom and become a nut that is usually in 4-5 clusters. The husk and the nut itself are harvested for medicinal benefits and various uses. Scientifically named as Juglans nigra, the black walnut tree came to Europe in the mid-1600s. However, it did not spread beyond Europe and America. Being a popular food source in Europe and America, black walnuts can be seen in salads, fudge, ice cream, candy. Pasta and chicken and pork dishes also have it.

Black walnut contains more protein and fatty acids than the English walnut. The highly praised black walnut contains unique organic compounds and high amount of omega-3. Black walnut has a great nutritional profile owing to these components. Consuming them directly is possible and so as using the husk of the walnut into powder. Another usage of black walnuts includes the black walnut oil, which is tough to extract.

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Nutrition Facts of Black Walnuts

The fruits, leaves, and bark of black walnut contain 5-hydroxy-1,4-naphthalenedione, aka juglone. These active constituents are effective in combatting H-pylori, worms, and tobacco mosaic virus. Juglans nigra also contains the neuroprotective quinoid constituent called 5-hydroxy-2-methyl-1,4-naphthoquinone, aka Plumbagin. Black walnut also contains myricetin, quercetin, kaempferol, taxifolin, beta-sitosterol, stigmasterol, (-)-regiolone, and 1-alpha-tetralone derivative.

Polyphenols, antioxidants, and monounsaturated fatty acids like gamma-tocopherol are also present in black walnuts. Not to mention, it contains nutrients such as phytosterols, folate, and melatonin as well.

28 grams or one ounce of black walnut holds about:

  • 0.2 mg vitamin B6 (8 percent DV)
  • 0.9 mg iron (5 percent DV)
  • 0.9 mg zinc (6 percent DV)
  • 4.8 mg selenium (7 percent DV)
  • 144 mg potassium (14 percent DV)
  • 56.3 mg magnesium (14 percent DV)
  • 0.4 mg copper (19 percent DV)
  • 1.1 mg manganese (55 percent DV)
  • 1.9g fiber
  • 16.5g fat
  • 6.7g protein
  • 2.8g carbohydrates
  • 173 calories

Health Benefits of Black Walnuts

The health benefits of black walnuts are impressive. Black walnuts can:

1. Prevent Cancer

There are numerous advanced studies about the anti-cancer abilities of black walnut. So far, the results are auspicious. Juglone, the organic compound found in black walnut, contribute to anti-tumor and anti-carcinogenic activity within the body in addition to the many polyphenolic compounds and fatty acids it contains. These abilities help in slowing the growth or preventing the development of certain cancer types.

According to research, the juglone content found in black walnut causes human colorectal cells to die. Thus, black walnuts could potentially fight cancer.

2. Boost Respiratory Health

Another one of the health benefits of black walnuts is its ability to boost respiratory health. Gargling with the extract derived from black walnut can be very effective in soothing sore throats. Its anti-inflammatory property can ease the inflammation and irritation.

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3. Improve Immunity

Black walnut exhibit antifungal activities to boost immune system health. It is also rich in antioxidants, which efficiently help in protecting the body against free radicals. By the way, free radicals can bring about various kinds of chronic diseases and cancers. Having anti-viral and anti-parasitic properties, black walnut provides a comprehensive defense for the body.

4. Boost Heart Health

Another one of the health benefits of black walnuts is its ability to boost heart health. The beneficial compounds and the high levels of omega-3s found in black walnut can help reduce the harmful LDL cholesterol in the body. According to clinical studies, the addition of walnuts to a diet can reduce low-density lipoprotein, aka “bad” cholesterol. The high concentrations of alpha-linolenic acid, potassium, dietary fiber, protein, vitamin E, and magnesium are its other possible protective components. Black walnut can help reduce blood pressure, the risk of developing atherosclerosis, and the tension on the cardiovascular system. Thus, it lowers the risk of coronary heart disease, heart attack, and stroke.

5. Improve Digestive Health

The health benefits of black walnut also include its ability to boost digestive health. It is ideal for soothing upset stomachs, specifically inflamed walls of the gut or colon thanks to its anti-inflammatory properties. It aids in regulating excretion and promotes proper digestion. Black walnuts can relieve both diarrhea and constipation by efficiently balancing the body’s whole gastrointestinal system. Others utilize black walnuts as a laxative component in concentrated doses. However, using it for a long time is not advisable.

6. Boost Skin Health

Another one of the health benefits of black walnuts is its ability to boost skin health. Grinding up black walnut husks can create a fine powder, which can be made into a paste for skin application. The black walnut paste possesses high levels of beneficial fatty acids and antioxidants. These components can affect the skin’s appearance and health.  They help in preventing pimples, blemishes, and acne and clearing up skin issues such as eczema and psoriasis.

Furthermore, black walnut powder tincture may be too strong for the skin. Thus, mixing it with other natural salves and carrier creams is advisable.

7. Fight Fungal Diseases

The prevalent component in the body that can trigger yeast infections is Candida albicans. This particular fungus can easily penetrate the body, and poor dietary habits just worsen it. However, black walnut has tannins and juglone that can make the gut’s environment hostile to the candida fungus. It further protects the body against this fungus, which is capable of increasing toxicity in the bloodstream and weakening blood vessels. The similar antifungal property makes black walnut a potential agent against jock itch, ringworm, Athlete’s foot, and other known fungal infections.

Precautions

In the U.S., nut allergies are prevalent and can be harmful. Walnuts commonly cause anaphylactic shocks to those who have nut allergies. Thus, consulting a doctor first to verify an allergy to nuts is important before including black walnuts into a diet or as an herbal supplement. Applying the powder tincture to the skin usually causes a skin rash. Fortunately, it typically fades right away. Also, pregnant women should not topically or orally use black walnut. As said earlier, before adding anything to a diet or herbal regimen, better consult a physician first.

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