No, You Shouldn’t Start Eating Avocado Seeds

If you’ve logged onto Facebook in the past few days, you may have seen a viral video demonstrating how you can prepare the seed of an avocado for consumption. The video claims the seed is the most nutrient-dense part of the fruit, and that by drying it, chopping it up into pieces, and blending it, you are left with a powder-like substance that you can mix into smoothies or use for baking, adding an extra nutritional boost to your diet. The video has gained more than 25 million views since it was published on March 13.

So what’s the deal? Have we been missing out on a highly nutritious part of one of our favorite superfoods?

Not so much, says Health‘s contributing nutrition editor, Cynthia Sass, MPH, RD. “I’m a huge avocado fan. I eat them daily, and recommend them to my clients,…

Why You Should Be Eating Hemp Hearts If You Want to Lose Weight

If you care deeply about your health and want to try a new and delicious food that can help you drop a few pounds, you’re going to want to pick up a bag of hemp hearts. These are raw hemp seeds that have the hull or shell removed, leaving a small, soft and chewy, mild-tasting, nutty seed that’s easier to digest than hemp seeds. Here are three reasons these tiny gems are not only super nutritious but, as a bonus, can also help you reach your weight-loss goals.

Tiny Seeds, but Huge Protein!

A three-tablespoon serving of raw hemp hearts offers a whopping 10 grams of protein — and hemp seeds offer all nine essential amino acids, making it a complete protein that’s also rich in iron, magnesium, and zinc. Protein helps keep energy and blood-sugar levels stable, which helps prevent cravings for high-calorie…

Why It’s Time to Start Loving Chia Seeds

If the word chia brings up a mental image of a clay creature sprouting hair, you are not mistaken. But the seeds responsible for sprouting fuzz on Chia Pets are also an excellent source of anti-inflammatory omega-3s. Who knew?

For women, the RDI of omega-3s is 1.1 grams (1,100 mg) a day, so if you’re looking for a new source that’s vegan, gluten-free, and easy to consume, you’ll want to pick up some of these seeds immediately. One ounce of chia seeds (about two tablespoons) contains 137 calories, one gram of saturated fat, 11 grams of fiber, four grams of protein, 177 milligrams of calcium, and 4.9 grams of omega-3 fatty acids. Aside from offering omegas, when chia seeds come in contact with water, they bulk up just like flaxseeds do. So when you eat them, they make you feel full. This means not only will they prevent you from overeating, but they’ll also…

FYI, Almonds Are Not Nuts. And Neither Are A Lot Of Other ‘Nuts.’

We all know almonds are a healthy snack and a great dessert ingredient.

But get this: almonds are not nuts. They’re seeds of a fruit.

More specifically, they’re seeds of the almond fruit, which grows on a tree and is very similar to a peach, botanically speaking. When the almond fruit is ripe, we remove its flesh and shell, then eat the small kernel inside. Check it out:

Unripe almond fruit hangs on a tree.
A farmer cuts open the fruit’s fuzzy hull to reveal the seed inside.
When the almonds are ripe, their hulls split open.
The hulls get dry and curled, exposing the inner almond pit.
See that pit in there? The seed we eat is just underneath it.

Here’s why almonds are not nuts.

In the botanical world, a nut is a dry, hard-shelled fruit. But as you can see, almonds have a fleshy outer layer. Therefore they’re technically not nuts, but a different kind of fruit called a drupe, said Tom Gradziel, an almond researcher at the University of California, Davis.

You could compare them to another drupe you know well.

“Almonds are basically peaches,” Gradziel told HuffPost. “But instead of the fruity part becoming fleshy, most of it sizes up in the kernel.”

Almonds are indeed a member of the prunus family that includes peaches, though not the same species. The plants are incredibly similar. Both Gradziel and Richard Rosecrance, a fruit…