Nuts and their history

In prehistoric times, ancient kingdoms, the Middle Ages and modern times, nuts have always been a reliable source of food throughout human history. In fact, the walnut is one of the first semi-finished products: it was not only convenient to roam with it, it also perfectly endured storage over long harsh winters.

Recent archaeological excavations in Israel have unearthed the remains of various types of walnut that scientists believe date back to 780 years ago. In Texas, pecan husks dating back to 000 BC have been found near human artifacts. There is no doubt that nuts have served humans as food for thousands of years.

There are many references to nuts in ancient times. One of the first is in the Bible. From their second trip to Egypt, Joseph’s brothers also brought pistachios for trade. Aaron’s rod miraculously transforms and bears fruit almonds, proving that Aaron is God’s chosen priest (Numbers 17). Almonds, on the other hand, were a nutritional staple of the ancient peoples of the Middle East: they were consumed blanched, roasted, ground and whole. The Romans were the first to invent candied almonds and often gave such nuts as a wedding gift as a symbol of fertility. Almond oil was used as a medicine in many European and Middle Eastern cultures before the time of Christ. Adepts of natural medicine still use it to treat indigestion, as a laxative, as well as to relieve coughs and laryngitis. As for, there is a rather intriguing legend here: lovers who meet under a pistachio tree on a moonlit night and hear the crackling of a nut will gain good luck. In the Bible, the sons of Jacob preferred pistachios, which, according to legend, were one of the favorite treats of the Queen of Sheba. These green nuts probably originated in an area stretching from Western Asia to Turkey. The Romans introduced pistachios to Europe from Asia around the 1st century AD. Interestingly, the nut was not known in the US until the end of the 19th century, and only in the 1930s did it become a popular American snack. The history (in this case English) is as old as that of almonds and pistachios. According to ancient manuscripts, walnut trees were grown in the Hanging Gardens of Babylon. The walnut also has a place in Greek mythology: it was God Dionysus who, after the death of his beloved Karya, turned her into a walnut tree. Oil was widely used in the Middle Ages, and peasants crushed walnut shells to make bread. The walnut made its way to the New World faster than the pistachio, arriving in California in the 18th century with Spanish priests.

for centuries formed the basis of the diet of the Middle East and Europe. People used the chestnut as a medicine: it was believed that it protected against rabies and dysentery. However, its main role remained food, especially for cold regions.

(which is still a bean) probably originated in South America, but came to North America from Africa. Spanish navigators brought peanuts to Spain, and from there it spread to Asia and Africa. Initially, peanuts were grown as food for pigs, but people began to use them at the end of the 20th century. Because it was not easy to grow, and also because of stereotypes (peanuts were considered the food of the poor), they were not widely introduced into the human diet until the early XNUMXth century. Improved agricultural equipment facilitated growth and harvest.

Despite the wonderful properties of nuts, it is worth remembering that. They are rich in monounsaturated, polyunsaturated fats, they lack cholesterol and contain protein. Walnuts are famous for their omega-3 content, which is essential for heart health. All nuts are a good source of vitamin E. Include various types of nuts in your diet in small quantities.

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