Are Nuts Good For Weight Loss? An Expert’s Opinion In 2024

are nuts good for weight loss
Which nuts are good for weight loss? Photo: alexgrec/Freepik

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Nuts come in all shapes, sizes, and varieties. They contain vitamins, minerals, and essential nutrients[1] such as fiber, protein, dietary fat, and carbohydrates. However, the amount and ratio of nutrients vary depending on the type of nut. 

Are nuts good for weight loss? They can be. This article discusses various types of nuts – which ones are best for weight loss – and the importance of eating nuts in moderation to support a healthy weight.

Are Nuts Good For Fat Loss?

Possibly, however, this depends on the type and amount of nut. With many varieties of nuts, it’s difficult to say that all nuts are good for fat or weight loss. Rather, many types of nuts eaten in moderation can be a healthful part of a weight-loss diet – and losing weight may help individuals lose body fat too.

Are Nuts Good For Weight Loss?

Are Nuts Good For weight Loss?
Choose low-calorie nuts. Photo: Idealspics/Freepik

Yes. Long-term nut consumption, consisting of about one handful a day, can help prevent[2] obesity and type 2 diabetes. Nuts are a healthy snack choice for weight loss because they offer valuable nutrients[1] – vitamins, minerals, and fiber – not just empty calories.
However, those looking to lose weight may find the most weight loss benefits from particular nuts

Macadamia Nuts

Macadamia nuts may be especially good for weight loss. Of all edible nuts, they contain the most total and monounsaturated fat. In fact, 75% of their calories come from fat, yet studies indicate that macadamia nut consumption is unlikely to lead to weight gain.[3] 


Peanuts are another great weight-loss snack option – combined with an energy-restricted diet, consuming 35 grams of peanuts[4] before meals can support weight loss better than a traditional low-fat, weight-loss diet. 


When consumed as part of a low-calorie diet, walnuts can support weight loss[5] and improve cardiovascular markers. Specifically, walnuts can lower LDL cholesterol and systolic blood pressure.


Are almonds good for weight loss? Yes! Almond consumption can lead to greater weight loss[6] and reduced risk of cardiovascular disease. In clinical studies, participants in the almond group showed a greater reduction in waist circumference than those in the nut-free group.

Brazil Nuts

It’s unclear where Brazil nuts[7] stand in their weight loss effects. One study found that Brazil nuts neither helped individuals lose body weight nor caused them to gain weight. To know what effect Brazil nuts will have on you, experiment and modify your portions accordingly. 

Nuts To Minimize

Some nuts like cashews,[8] chestnuts,[9] and pistachios[10] are higher in carbohydrates and calories than other nuts. These nuts are not necessarily bad for weight loss but may be more beneficial when consumed in moderation – this will keep calories low and increase your weight loss success.

That said, our bodies are unique, and some people may respond differently to different nuts. Even the best nuts for weight loss may not have a desirable effect on everyone. 

Furthermore, healthy weight loss requires more than diet. Any weight loss journey should also include a good attitude and workout routine. Some individuals may need additional support – if so, your doctor may prescribe diet pills or fat burner supplements.

Why Nuts Are Good For Losing Weight?

Nuts have a unique nutritional profile[11] that makes them a beneficial part of a weight-loss diet plan.

Nuts are an excellent source[12] of healthy fats, protein, and dietary fiber. Individually and collectively, these nutrients help increase satiety, which can support weight loss. Furthermore, nuts are high in antioxidants – plant nutrients that support cell health – which can also support weight loss.[13]

Nuts are a no-brainer, delicious snack for weight loss. They are small, dry, and don’t require refrigeration, making them easy to transport and eat at any time.

However, adding nuts to an unhealthy diet is unlikely to induce weight loss. Instead, add nuts to a healthy diet along with other wholesome foods that can help you lose weight.

Other Health Benefits Of Eating Nuts

Aside from their positive influence on weight loss, nuts offer a range of other health benefits. 

Brazil nuts have high amounts of bioavailable selenium.[14] Selenium may help prevent[15] cancer and cardiovascular disease, and help reduce cognitive decline. Selenium can also support thyroid health.

Walnuts can support cognitive function and brain health.[16] Other nuts like hazelnuts,[17] almonds,[18] and cashews[19] have the potential to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. 
All nuts contain dietary fiber, which provides numerous health benefits[20] including improved gut motility, better weight management, increased insulin sensitivity, reduced inflammation, improved mental health, as well as colorectal cancer prevention.

How To Add Nuts To Your Healthy Diet

Nuts are an easy snack to take on the go or add to healthy meals.

Trail Mix

Combine your favorite nuts with other nuts and seeds and add dried fruit to create trail mix. This can be eaten as a snack between meals or as a dessert. 

Salad Topping

How To Add Nuts To Your Healthy Diet
Nuts on salad boost nutrition. Photo: All Item Stock/Freepik

Add crunch, satiation, and nutrition to your salad by sprinkling nuts on top. Common salad nuts include sliced almonds, walnuts, pecans, pine nuts, and cashews. You may also use nuts as a replacement for croutons. 

Plain Nuts

No need to get fancy – you can eat nuts on their own by the handful. Pop a few in your mouth when you feel a craving coming on. This can help stave off hunger and prevent overeating.

Nut Butter

Rather than eating hard nuts, eat your nuts in butter form. Many grocery stores carry a variety of nut butter including peanut butter, almond butter, cashew butter, hazelnut butter, and walnut butter. Spread your nut butter on toast or mix it into a smoothie for added nutrients.

Nut Milk

Various nut milks are commercially available in most grocery stores. Common nut milks include almond milk and cashew milk. While some nutrients may be lost during the milking process, nut milk still retains many nutrients.

Use nut milk in addition to or as an alternative to dairy milk. Nut milk can be beneficial for those who want to lose weight, as well as for vegans and anyone with lactose intolerance.

Yogurt Crunch

Consume unsweetened, protein-rich yogurt and sprinkle nuts on top. This will add flavor, crunch, nutrients, and extra weight loss support.[21] 

Nutty Vegetables

Adding nuts to vegetables can help create contrast between flavors and textures. Add chopped walnuts to stir fry, sliced almonds to string beans, or any combination of nuts to any combination of vegetables.

Dessert Topper

Although consuming high-calorie desserts should be limited while on a weight-loss diet, it’s good to treat yourself once in a while. Add chopped peanuts on top of frozen yogurt, hazelnuts on top of a slice of cake, or fresh pecans on top of pecan pie.

Unsalted And Unsweetened

When shopping for nuts, read the ingredients list carefully and choose unsalted and unsweetened nuts. This will ensure you don’t consume any excess calories or salt.


Nuts have a robust nutritional profile, consisting of vitamins, minerals, macronutrients, and fiber, all of which can support health and weight loss. Many studies refute the claim that nuts lead to weight gain. Rather, the science shows that eating a handful of nuts daily can aid weight loss efforts.

However, some nuts are more calorie-dense than others. It’s important to choose lower-calorie, unsalted, and unsweetened nuts, and to eat them in moderation. There are numerous ways to add nuts to a healthy diet – experiment and enjoy!

Frequently Asked Questions

What nuts are the best for weight loss?

Almonds, walnuts, peanuts, and macadamia nuts are a few nuts that are great for weight loss.

Does eating too many nuts lead to weight gain?

It can. Some nuts, such as cashews, chestnuts, and pistachio nuts, are high in calories. Consuming too many can lead to weight gain. Choose low-calorie nuts and consume them in moderation.

What nuts are high in calories?

Cashews, chestnuts, and pistachios are a few nuts that are higher in calories than other nuts.

Can I eat nuts every day?

Yes, but in moderation. Some studies suggest that daily nut consumption, in the amount of about one handful a day, can prevent obesity and type 2 diabetes. Consuming more than this may thwart weight loss efforts.

What’s the best way to add nuts to my diet?

Eat nuts right out of the bag, spread nut butter on toast, sprinkle nuts in a salad or in yogurt, and use nuts in trail mix.

Who should avoid nuts?

Anyone with a nut allergy should avoid nuts.

Will nuts help me lose belly fat?

No. Nuts can support weight and fat loss, however, they will not target belly fat, specifically.

+ 21 Sources

EHproject has strict sourcing guidelines and relies on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical associations. We work mostly with peer-reviewed studies to ensure accurate information. We avoid using tertiary references. You can learn more about how we ensure our content is accurate and current by reading our editorial policy.

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A health coach specializing in Integrative Nutrition, I approach wellness with a holistic and functional medicine perspective. As a writer, I simplify intricate topics such as nutrition, gut and hormone health, mental well-being, and spiritual health,… See More