Q& A - Are Cashews a Nut or a Seed?

6 Oct 2018


Another popular food now available from our bulk food bins is raw cashews.  Many may not realise cashews are in fact a seed native to Brazil and now grown throughout Asia.


It’s interesting cashews over time have received a bad rap, with many believing they were high in fat. The fact is cashews contain less fat than many other nuts.  As well, the fats contained in cashews are predominantly unsaturated fat and as we know, unsaturated fat can be beneficial in lowering cholesterol and improving heart health.


Cashews are high in minerals, particularly copper, magnesium, phosphorous, manganese, zinc, iron, potassium, selenium and calcium.


A study undertaken by researchers from the University of Montreal in 2010, tested on lab rats an extract from cashew nuts known as anacardic acid.  Interestingly it was found that anacardic acid enhances the capacity of sugar to enter the cells, thereby decreasing the quantity of sugar circulating in the bloodstream. Cashews may also be helpful in enhancing the metabolism of sugar into energy. We know controlling our blood sugar levels certainly helps to reduce the possibility of developing diabetes.


It is so easy to include cashews in our daily eating regime.  Just don’t add the salt!!


Below is a really tasty recipe for a Cashew Cheese Sauce which not only includes raw cashews but also savoury yeast flakes.  This sauce can be used in so many ways – drizzled over pasta, vegetables, or even pizzas. It can be used where you would normally use a cheese sauce.



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