I Think They’re Nuts: Raw Almonds vs Dry Roasted Almonds

I’ve recently heard people state that raw almonds are better for you than dry roasted ones. This is of particular interest to me because I enjoy eating almonds almost daily as one of my snacks. Some of the information out there has even suggested that the oil in almonds becomes rancid after being heated. I’m here to discover the truth about raw almonds vs dry roasted almonds.

I was instantly skeptical for two reasons:

  1. I love eating dry roasted almonds more than I like the raw ones.
  2. The statements that I read did not provide any specific evidence of truth.

I instantly began to comb the expanses of the interwebs to find a definitive answer, and here is what I found.

Good Nuts

Almonds in both raw and dry roasted forms contain fiber, protein, and the good healthy monounsaturated fats.

Fiber

At 3 grams per ounce, both raw and dry roasted almonds contain a decent amount of fiber that keeps you feeling more full than a carb-based snack.

Protein

Raw and dry roasted almonds have about 6 grams per ounce of protein. This also affects your feelings of fullness.

Fat

Dry roasted almonds cooked without oil contain about the same amount of fat, 14 grams per ounce, as raw almonds.

Hmm, so far here I haven’t presented any information that makes one stand out over the other. What else is there to look at?

Calories

No difference here either. Both raw and dry roasted almonds contain roughly 165 calories per ounce.

Additionally

Both types of almonds contain magnesium, copper, manganese and calcium with only the dry roasted ones degrading slightly in vitamin amounts through the roasting process.

So what’s this business about bad almonds?

After spending quite a bit of time trying to find out a source of the negative information about dry roasted almonds, the most I could find were some message boards attributing this to raw foodists and Dr. Oz who said something about them on an Oprah show several years ago. Now I don’t know anything about Dr. Oz, but based upon my opinions of other doctors from that show, I’m inclined to ignore it.

There is absolutely no concrete evidence that I can find that suggests raw almonds are significantly better than dry roasted almonds.

Conclusion – Grab Some Nuts

I’m not a nutritionist, I’m just a fit guy that has consistently eaten almonds of both the raw and dry roasted varieties for years. What is there to take away from the raw almonds vs dry roasted almonds controversy?

I like the taste of the dry roasted ones better. Based on the lack of information about any negative effects of the dry roasted variety, I’m going to keep on eating them.

Eat ‘em dry roasted, eat ‘em raw. Avoid them if they’ve been cooked in extra oil and avoid them if they’ve been salted. Otherwise, go nuts… in moderation.

Raw Almonds vs Dry Roasted Almonds

Dry Roasted

Raw

 

  • Pavel

    Raw worst digested, leading to a lower digestibility of nutrients

  • ANEWME

    Seriously, after hours of web research nothing? I doubt it. I know this post is old but felt the need to to say something.
    The whole issue with roasted almonds is the high levels of acrylamide, a potentially threatening cancer causing byproduct of the amino acid asparaginen in roasted nuts such as almonds and hazelnuts.Just google raw vs roasted nuts and make your own conclusions.

    • http://www.johnnyfit.com JohnnyFit

      Hi ANEWME, thanks for your input on this topic.

      I have heard of acrylamide, but I decided to look into it some more after your comment.

      Here’s a few excerpts that resonated with me the most, and their source:

      http://www.acrylamidefacts.org/FAQs.aspx

      “Currently, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the World Health Organization and most other health regulatory bodies have not determined that the presence of acrylamide in food presents a health risk to humans and do not recommend that consumers change their diets for the purpose of avoiding acrylamide. Studies are ongoing on this subject.”

      “The amount of acrylamide in a particular food varies based on the natural components of raw materials and cooking conditions. Therefore, removing one food from the diet is unlikely to change overall consumption.”

      The Google search that I used was: almonds acrylamide

      I read most of the articles on the first page of the search results. While there is information that high levels of acrylamide could possibly lead to cancer, so can breathing in the air. I don’t believe it’s worth raising a red flag about.

      I still say eat them roasted, or eat them raw… Go nuts!