Web Exclusive: Almonds have fewer calories than we thought!

Nutrition Diva discusses researchers' new finding that the body doesn't absorb all of the available calories in almonds.

Monica Reinagel, MS, LD/N, CNS
1-minute read

Web Exclusive: Almonds have fewer calories than we thought!

You know the folks on the Almond Board were happy about this one! Most nutritional databases list a one-ounce serving of almonds (that’s 28 grams or about 23 nuts) as having 160 calories. But researchers have now demonstrated that the body doesn’t actually absorb all of the available calories in almonds—probably due to the fiber they contain. An ounce of almonds appears to provide only 130 usable calories.

This may seem like a big deal until you realize that all the data we use for calories and other nutrients are merely approximations. The actual nutritional content of foods is affected by lots of variables: growing conditions, varietal, stage of ripeness, length of time in storage, and just the natural variation between individual plants and animals.

See also: Can you Trust Calorie Counters?

It’ll take a while for nutrition facts labels and calorie counters to catch up to this new information.  But if you’re someone who likes to count every calorie (or nut), you can give yourself a 30-calorie (or 5-nut) “credit” for each ounce of whole, unroasted almonds you log. For everyone else, simply continue to enjoy nuts—of all kinds—in moderation!

Learn more about the nutritional benefits of nuts.

About the Author

Monica Reinagel, MS, LD/N, CNS

Monica Reinagel is a board-certified licensed nutritionist, author, and the creator of one of iTunes' most highly ranked health and fitness podcasts. Her advice is regularly featured on the TODAY show, Dr. Oz, NPR, and in the nation's leading newspapers, magazines, and websites. Do you have a nutrition question? Call the Nutrition Diva listener line at 443-961-6206. Your question could be featured on the show.