Are Raw Cashews Healthier than Roasted?

Health Benefits of Dry Roasted Cashews and Raw Cashews:

Cashews are a healthy member of the nut family. According to Harvard Medical School, a person should consume 2 oz. of nuts per week in order to help lower cholesterol, enhance cardiovascular health, and improve the functioning of their blood vessels. However, you might be confused when you see raw cashews and dry roasted cashews on the shelf at the store. You are probably wondering, which one provides more health benefits? While both types of cashews provide a lot of nutritional benefits, the raw is slightly better because it is unmodified and contains all its original minerals and nutrients.

First, let’s examine what raw and dry roasted cashews have in common. Every ounce of either cashew contains 160 calories which are mostly derived from healthy fats that are unsaturated. This ounce of cashews also provides 70% of the copper you’re supposed to consume in one day. As you may know, copper helps promote the health of the nerve function. Most importantly, they provide 20% of the total magnesium that men need daily and 25% of the total magnesium that women need daily. Magnesium increases the body’s production of energy and improves muscle functionality.

Now, let’s look at the differences. Raw cashews contain 1.9 mm of iron in 1 ounce. This is 24% of the daily recommendation for men and 11% for women. The same amount of dry roasted cashews contains 1.7 mm of iron. So, you will get slightly more iron by consuming raw cashews. Iron exists in the blood and it helps circulate it properly so that it can deliver oxygen to your bodily tissues. This will increase your energy levels and reduce feelings of fatigue.

When it comes to selenium, raw cashews also have more of it than dry roasted cashews. One ounce of raw cashews has 5.6 micrograms of selenium while one ounce of dry roasted cashews has 3.3 micrograms. Selenium is important to consume because it increases the health of your cell membranes and overall DNA. There are free radicals which try to damage your cells and the selenium helps prevents this from happening. Selenium has even been known to reduce the chances of getting cancer.

Therefore, raw cashews do have more slightly more iron and selenium than dry roasted cashews, but dry roasted cashews carry much of the same health benefits and come in a very close second.