Simple Palate: Pass the Pecans

Written by: Cielestia Calbay

If you’re looking for an excuse to dig into that slice of pecan pie, tell yourself it’s National Pecan Month.

April is National Pecan Month and clinical health studies have shown that pecans are good for you too, as with other nuts.

In addition to their sweet crunch, the “All American Nut” is loaded with antioxidants, protein, fiber and more than 19 vitamins and minerals.

Researchers have also found pecans may protect your mind, as it plays a role in protecting the nervous system. The study, which was conducted at the Center for Cellular Neurobiology at the University of Massachusetts Lowell, found that adding pecans to your diet may slow down age-related motor neuron degeneration. These include conditions like Lou Gehrig’s Disease.

Tips for Buying and Storing:

- Look for plump pecans that are uniform in color and size

- Pecans have a refrigerator shelf-life of about nine months and a freezer shelf-life for up to two years

- Airtight containers are best for storing pecans in the refrigerator and sealed plastic bags in the freezer

Fun Facts:

- There are more than 1,000 varieties of pecans and many are named for Native American Indian tribes

- It would take 5,640 pecan halves to equal the weight of a watermelon

- Pecans come in a variety of sizes: mammoth, extra large, large, medium, small and midget

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Cielestia Calbay is the associate editor of Competitor Magazine. If she’s not at the office, you’ll probably find her outdoors or scouring the area for the nearest juice bar. She may be contacted at ccalbay@competitorgroup.com or @ccalbay

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