Nuts are a compact way of getting a lot of nutrition. They provide vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, protein, and fiber. These nutritional gems are generally high in calories. Because they’re filling, nuts can actually keep you on your diet. If you get bored with the same-old, same-olds, then branch out and mix it up with these nutritious varieties.

Walnuts are heavy hitters when it comes to all-important omega-3s-just a quarter cup provides 90 percent of the recommended daily intake of these essential fatty acids, which help reduce inflammation. A recent study from the University of Oslo also found walnuts to be among the highest plant-based sources of antioxidants, which are associated with preventing heart disease.

A veritable powerhouse of muscle-building protein and satiating fiber, almonds are a dieter’s best friend. Even if you do not count calories, nutritionists still recommend a daily dose of almonds-especially for men. Why? Because a single 1-ounce serving packs almost 40 percent of your daily recommended dose of vitamin E, an important nutrient when it comes to staving off prostate cancer.

Also known as filberts, hazelnuts play a starring role in desserts, pastries, and chocolates. Nonetheless, they still earn the right to be classified as a health food. A 1-ounce serving provides almost a quarter of the recommended daily value of copper-important for making red blood cells and myelin, the substance that surrounds nerve fibers. One serving also provides a whopping 86 percent of the recommended daily value of manganese, a trace mineral that helps keep skin, bones, and cartilage healthy.

Pine nuts
Still not convinced a measly handful of nuts will satisfy your cravings? Go for an ounce of pine nuts. They’re so tiny-you get about 167 of them per ounce-that you’ll get more in a single serving than you will with other nuts. Plus pine nuts give you almost 20 percent of your daily recommended vitamin K, essential for helping your blood clot. They’re also extremely high in manganese.

Macadamia nuts get a bad rap for their high caloric content. Although they do have about 200 calories per ounce, they contain good fats-mostly monounsaturated. Research also shows that macadamias may reduce your risk of heart disease and they contain a good amount of calcium, which will keep your teeth and bones healthy.

Packed with thiamin-essential for neural function and carbohydrate metabolism-these flavorful green nuts provide as much potassium in a single serving as a banana. Studies have also found that pistachios help lower cholesterol, slow the absorption of carbohydrates, and can even reduce stress.