Almonds are among the healthiest nuts. They offer a unique flavor and crunch and serve as a brilliant snack. They are loaded with some of the most important nutrients and provide great benefits.
But overindulging in them could cause problems. Research sheds light on the possible adverse effects almonds can cause. In this post, we will explore all of them.
What Are The Side Effects Of Almonds?
1. May Cause Constipation
Almonds are rich in fiber. An ounce of almonds (about 23 kernels) contains 3.5 grams of fiber. Though this is good, excess intake of fiber can lead to constipation and a host of other gastrointestinal issues if not combined with enough water intake.
Other gastrointestinal symptoms caused by excess intake of almonds (and their fiber) are bloating, gas, stomach cramps, and diarrhea.
2. Decrease Nutrient Absorption
The excess fiber can also bind with other minerals (like calcium, magnesium, zinc, and iron) and interfere with their absorption in the bloodstream. Consume almonds as a single snack or in between meals to get full benefits of the nuts.
The recommended daily fiber intake is about 30 grams for most people. Anything beyond that can cause issues.
3. May Cause Weight Gain
An ounce of almonds (23 kernels) contains about 164 calories. Though this is not a problem by itself, if you consume almonds in excess (more than 20), on top of your regular diet, you can pile on pounds.
This is especially true if you do not indulge in regular physical exercise.
They are highly unlikely almonds by themselves can cause weight gain. Consuming them in excess as well as following a poor lifestyle makes one prone to weight gain.
4. Can Lead To Allergies
After walnuts and cashews, almonds cause most tree nut allergies in the US.
Amandin, a protein in almonds, has been identified as an allergen.
Almonds may cause oral allergy syndrome in certain individuals. The symptoms include an itchy mouth, a scratchy throat, and swelling of the tongue, mouth, and lips.
Almonds can also cause a severe allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. This condition is characterized by shortness of breath, hives, nausea or vomiting, confusion, impaired voice, low blood pressure, and lightheadedness.
5. May Lead To Vitamin E Overdose
Almonds are rich in vitamin E. But consuming them in excess may lead to vitamin E overdose.
Though overdosing on vitamin E by merely eating almonds is highly unlikely (one cannot just eat so many almonds!), it is essential we are aware of the repercussions.
If you are already consuming other foods rich in vitamin E (like fortified cereals and whole grains), the excess of almonds can cause problems.
Excess intake of vitamin E can interrupt blood coagulation and lead to hemorrhage. However, these effects are more prominent in individuals taking excess of vitamin E supplements.
6. May Cause Kidney Stones
Almonds are rich in intestinal soluble oxalates, which are compounds that may contribute to renal failure and kidney stones. Reports suggest that oxalates from almonds have a high bioavailability.
A hundred grams of roasted almonds contains 469 milligrams of oxalate.
7. Increase Toxins In The Body
Almonds, especially bitter versions, can cause cyanide poisoning. The HCN level is 40 times higher in bitter almonds as compared to sweet almonds.
After enzymatic hydrolysis, hydrocyanic acid (HCN) may lead to breathing issues, nervous breakdown, choking, and even death. Hence, they are a strict dietary prohibition for pregnant and lactating women.
Almonds are incredibly healthy, of course. But as is the case with any food, moderation is key.
How Many Almonds can you Eat In A Day?
One ounce of almonds contains 23 kernels. There is no scientific data on how many almonds you can eat in a day to avoid the side effects. But anecdotal evidence suggests limiting your intake to 10 to 15 almonds a day. It is always better to soak almonds overnight to make fiber more bioavailable.
We want to reiterate it – almonds are healthy. They are an important addition to a balanced diet, just like the other nuts. Remember to consume them in moderation after consulting your doctor.
If you have any specific medical condition, please stop use and consult your healthcare provider.