Acorns are the nuts of oak trees, which develop richly over the world.
When a staple nourishment for different social orders, acorns aren't as often as possible used today.
In spite of the fact that these nuts are loaded with nutrients, it's regularly discussed whether they're safe and to eat.
Here we are telling you whether acorns are edible safely and explores their nutrients, benefits, and dangers.
Acorns are generally safe to eat
Acorns have gained a nasty reputation because they contain tannins — a gaggle of bitter plant compounds which will be harmful when consumed in high amounts.
Tannins are considered an antinutrient, which suggests that they reduce your body’s ability to soak up essential nutrients from food.
Additionally, consuming high amounts of tannins may cause adverse health effects, like severe liver damage and cancer.
However, most of the tannins leach out of acorns when they’re prepared for consumption — often by soaking or boiling. While no studies exist on the toxicity of raw acorns in humans, these nuts are rarely eaten raw.
In fact, people are safely consuming acorns for thousands of years
Acorns are highly nutritious
Though the exact nutrient profile depends on the species of acorn, all are packed with essential nutrients.
Acorns are especially high in potassium, iron, vitamins A and E, and a number of other other important minerals.
Plus, these nuts are low in calories. Most of their calories are available the shape of healthy unsaturated fats.
A 1-ounce (28-gram) serving of dried acorns contains the subsequent nutrients:
• Calories: 144
• Protein: 2 grams
• Fat: 9 grams
• Carbs: 15 grams
• Fiber: 4 grams
• Vitamin A: 44% of the Reference Daily Intake (RDI)
• Vitamin E: 20% of the RDI
• Iron: 19% of the RDI
• Manganese: 19% of the RDI
• Potassium: 12% of the RDI
• Vitamin B6: 10% of the RDI
• Folate: 8% of the RDI
Scientists have also identified over 60 beneficial plant compounds in acorns, including catechins, resveratrol, quercetin, and gallic acid — potent antioxidants that can help protect your cells from damage.
These antioxidants are linked to numerous health benefits, such as a lower risk of heart disease, diabetes, and cancer
Potential benefits of acorns
Acorns Contains several promising health benefits, if they’re not eaten raw or prepared properly.
May improve gut health
The bacteria in your gut play a key role in your overall health. An imbalance of these bacteria has been linked to obesity, diabetes, and bowel diseases.
Acorns are an excellent source of fiber, which nourishes your beneficial gut bacteria.
It has been used as an herbal remedy since long to treat stomach pain, bloating, diarrhea, nausea, and other common digestive issues.
In a 2-month study in 23 adults with persistent indigestion, those who took 100 mg of acorn extract had less overall stomach pain than those who took a cornstarch capsule.
However, this study used highly concentrated extract. It’s not known whether whole acorns would have an equivalent effect.
More research on their digestive effects is needed.
Rich in antioxidants
Antioxidants are compounds that defend your cells from damage caused by potentially harmful molecules called free radicals.
Research suggests that diets high in antioxidants may help prevent chronic illnesses, such as heart disease, diabetes, and certain cancers.
Acorns are rich in antioxidants like vitamins A and E, also as numerous other plant compounds.
One study on animal says that acorn extract reduced inflammation in rats with reproductive damage.
That said, human research is needed.
Abundant in the wild
Over 450 species of oak worldwide produce acorns. These are mainly in the Northern Hemisphere.
From fall to early spring, you'll find hundreds — if not thousands — of mature acorns on the bottom below these trees. These nuts are considered safe to forage, but you should watch out for rotten ones. Green, unripe specimens should likewise not be gathered.
If collected within the wild, acorns are often a free, nutritious, and sustainable local food choice.
Potential downsides of acorns
Although acorns offer several benefits, they also have potential drawbacks.
Raw ones may be unsafe
We have said earlier, the tannins in raw acorns function as antinutrients, and it reduces absorption of certain food compounds. They are also linked to certain cancers and may cause liver damage when consumed too much.
Few people report constipation, stomach upset, nausea from eating raw acorns, though this has not been confirmed by research. What else, the tannins give these nuts a real hard bitter flavor.
Thus, is not recommended to eat raw acorns.
You can easily remove the tannins by boiling or soaking your acorns. This process eliminates their bitterness and makes them safe to eat.
May cause allergic reactions
Acorns are a tree nut, which is one among the foremost common allergens worldwide.
In fact, up to 1.2% of the U.S. population is allergic to at least one or more tree nuts.
Allergic reactions to tree nuts range from mild itching, scratchy throat, and watery eyes to anaphylaxis — a potentially life-threatening response that can cause extreme difficulty breathing.
If you’re allergic to other tree nuts, you ought to avoid acorns unless cleared to consume them by your healthcare practitioner.
Can be difficult to prepare
Collecting and preparing acorns can be time-consuming. Though abundant within the wild, they’re not commonly sold in grocery stores.
You may need to order them online if you’re unable to forage your own.
You also have to leach them of their tannins to reduce their bitterness and ensure that they are safe to eat. This can be done by boiling or soaking.
Though this process is sort of simple, it's going to feel cumbersome — especially since other nuts are readily available and far easier to eat.