No announcement yet.

What's the deal with cashews?

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • What's the deal with cashews?

    Are they not primal? I searched the forum and this is the best I could find:

    Cashews aren't actually nuts they are seeds. That might be the main reason. Or it could be because of their relation to poison Sumac. It has two shells and in between the two shells is a coating of urushoil, this is the oil that causes rashes in poison-ivy. Since you can't crack open and eat a cashew this might be the reason. Cashews require, peeling, boiling and roasting in order to make them edible.

    So they are not primal? Do they have a high carb count? Figures they probably do - they taste super sweet to me and I love them. Ah heck, I probably need to cut back on ALL nuts anyways!

  • #2

    Yeah, I love nuts as well. I get through enough brazil nuts that I'm probably radioactive. Cutting down is one of my goals for this month.


    • #3


      So they are not primal?</blockquote>

      I guess whether a people living in the "primal" state used them would depend on where that people lived. Cashews are native to Brazil, although now grown elsewhere, so Brazilian Indians would undoubtedly have exploited them. People don&#39;t really leave potential food sources untapped.

      Nourishing Traditions recommends processing them at home before eating them, as it does with any nuts, seeds, or grains that one might want to eat. That&#39;s to neutralize enzyme inhibitors present in those sorts of foodstuffs.

      The authors say to soak them with a little salt and then dry them out, which is their general procedure with nuts. However, the authors say when it comes to cashews don&#39;t soak them too long or dry them out too slowly or they will taste "disagreeable". They suggest that&#39;s because of the roasting they&#39;ve already undergone that you mention.

      4 cups "raw" cashews

      1 tablespoon sea salt

      filtered water

      Soak them in the salt-water for 6 hours. Drain in a colander. Spread out on a stainless steel pan and dry in an oven at about 200 Fahrenheit (around 100 C, I guess) for 12 to 24 hours, turning occasionally, until completely dry. Then store in an airtight container.

      I haven&#39;t done this with cashews or any other nuts. It sounds a lot of fuss to me - although you can apparently buy dehydrators that save messing around with that long oven-drying. I suppose whether one needs to is a moot point. Traditional peoples certainly took care to process certain foodstuffs in certain ways that we usually don&#39;t (even though commercial entities over-process foodstuffs in other ways).

      For example, native peoples in the Americas would never have eaten maize unprocessed, because processing it makes the niacin in it more available to you, and if you don&#39;t you get pellagra:

      Whites in the southern US, who used to eat a lot of maize flour products but didn&#39;t know to process it, did get deficiency problems from eating it.

      When it comes to nuts I just don&#39;t know. I&#39;m not aware of whether native peoples around the world did soak and then dry nuts or whether they just dived in. I guess what people did historically isn&#39;t the crucial matter: the properties of the foodstuff are what matter. On the other hand, people who traditionally exploited particular foodstuffs seem to have learnt by trial and error what to do, or not to do, to stay healthy. So if they didn&#39;t it&#39;s probably OK not to.

      I guess if enzyme inhibitors are present in such foods then soaking them is a sensible practice, if one&#39;s eating a lot of them, but whether it matters if one only eats a few now and then ...

      Nutritional data:


      • #4

        Cashews aren&#39;t paleo (for the reasons mentioned). They are don&#39;t appear to be harmful, so probably fit into Primal quite well (like olives or tomatoes..).

        The "Seven Deadly Sins"

        Grains (wheat/rice/oats etc) . . . . . Dairy (milk/yogurt/butter/cheese etc) . . . . . Nightshades (peppers/tomato/eggplant etc)
        Tubers (potato/arrowroot etc) . . . Modernly palatable (cashews/olives etc) . . . Refined foods (salt/sugars etc )
        Legumes (soy/beans/peas etc)


        • #5

          Cashews can&#39;t be paleo by the rigid definition of point in time.

          But some things are paleo in spirit regardless of that, for instance, butter.

          I think many posters here get WAY too hung up here on that term, perhaps trying to use it as a simple go/no go test. We&#39;ve had threads here on paleo shampoos, deodorants, and contraceptives. Yeah, right....

          Eat &#39;em and enjoy them. All things in moderation. For me, it&#39;s the fat content in nuts that makes a weight loss diet hard.