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Have You Heard About This Superfood? Health Benefits of Sacha Inchi Nuts and Oil : Exclusive Renegade Health Article

Monday Aug 6, 2012 | BY |
| Comments (21)

These dark nuts from South America are full of omega-3 fatty acids.

Have you heard of Sacha Inchi nuts? Also called Inca peanuts, these nuts are making a big splash in the world of superfoods.

The Sacha Inchi is a plant that grows in the highlands of Peru. It produces a seed that tastes like a nut when roasted. Like many healthy nuts, it’s a great source of omega-3 fatty acids, as well as omega-6s and omega-9s. It also contains vitamin A and E. Can you say healthy snack?

A Little More About Sacha Inchi
Though the nuts and oil may be new to many of us here in North America, Sacha Inchi has been cultivated in the Amazon rainforest and along the east slope of the lower Andes for 3,000 years. Archaelogists found evidence of them in carvings on Incan tomb vessels. Plants are said to have a long production time, with some producing year after year for decades. Crops are harvested throughout the year, though costs are lower than those of other oil-producing plants.

The cold-pressed oil is said to contain about 45 percent omega-3 fatty acid, 36 percent omega 6, and 9 percent omega 9, with 27 percent protein. Some experts are calling it the tasty alternative to fish oil supplements.

The oil is used for cooking. It’s said to have a crisp, nutty flavor that’s perfect for salads, meat, fish, poultry, and sprinkled over vegetable dishes. You can use it like olive oil, though it’s said to be lighter, better tasting, and easier for your body to absorb.

Sacha Inchi pulp is a by-product used for soap, flour, bread, and in cosmetics and medicinal creams.

Health Benefits
If you know omega-3s, you can guess at the health benefits of these tasty nuts and oil. Foodies are especially excited about them because the nutrients are apparently easier to digest than those from other sources, so your body can easily take advantage of the healthy properties. Fans say that the oil does not cause gas or irritation, yet it contains more protein than olive oil, and far more omega-3 fatty acids (in the form of linolenic acid) than olive, soy, sunflower, or flax oils.

Because of the omega-3 content, Sacha Inchi nuts and oil are likely to positively benefit cardiovascular health. Specifically, they may lower cholesterol levels, boost brain function, ease joint stiffness, help maintain healthy glucose levels, support healthy skin and hair, relieve inflammation througout the body, and support the eyes and optimal vision. Scientific studies specifically on Sacha Inchi are minimal at this point, but considering its composition, these are the likely advantages to be gained by incorporating more of this superfood into the diet.

Vegans and raw foodists are especially excited about this food as it provides a plant-based way to get a good supply of omega-3 fatty acids. In addition, the oil is extracted by simple cold pressing, so no refining process is necessary. Because of the antioxidants vitamin E and A, it may also help battle the free radical damage that can lead to premature aging. The nuts are high in protein and amino acids—another plus for vegans. They contain nothing toxic or damaging to good health, so you can eat as many as you like!

If you’d like to try Sacha Inchi, try our high quality oil, cold pressed, vegan, and straight from the source in Peru. Or, if you’re looking for the nuts, check your local whole foods store.

Have you tried Sacha Inchi? How do you use it? Please share your tips.

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Photo courtesy imontag2002 via Flickr.com.

Sources
“Sacha Inchi Nuts & Oil,” Amazon Hub, http://www.amazonhub.com/Sacha/sacha-inchi-nuts-and-oil-vitamins-alternative-skin.html.

“Sacha Inchi Oil,” OnlyFoods.net, http://www.onlyfoods.net/sacha-inchi-oil.html#sacha-inchi-oil-history.

Kevin Gianni

Kevin Gianni is a health author, activist and blogger. He started seriously researching personal and preventative natural health therapies in 2002 when he was struck with the reality that cancer ran deep in his family and if he didn’t change the way he was living — he might go down that same path. Since then, he’s written and edited 6 books on the subject of natural health, diet and fitness. During this time, he’s constantly been humbled by what experts claim they know and what actually is true. This has led him to experiment with many diets and protocols — including vegan, raw food, fasting, medical treatments and more — to find out what is myth and what really works in the real world.

Kevin has also traveled around the world searching for the best protocols, foods, medicines and clinics around and bringing them to the readers of his blog RenegadeHealth.com — which is one of the most widely read natural health blogs in the world with hundreds of thousands of visitors a month from over 150 countries around the world.

21 COMMENTS ON THIS POST

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  1. I don’t know about that… looks a little bit like… didn’t you just quit your coffee experiment?

  2. Sally Klingler says:

    where do you get them?

  3. sue says:

    This oil goes rancid almost immediately! How do we keep it from spoiling? I think mine spoiled in the shipping process. I would like to find the nuts, tho.

  4. Gin says:

    I’ve been using omega 3 oils on my skin because I have an allergic reaction to them when taken orally. I used your Sacha Inchi oil the first time I rubbed it on my skin. It was great until the mosquitoes couldn’t leave me alone! Had to switch to hemp oil.

  5. Kuru says:

    I love eating the chocolate covered nuts by Savi. They make a package with maybe 10 nuts, a perfect portion for one or two. They cost about $3. Such a great way to get a delicious wholesome snack.

  6. John W says:

    No omega 3 is good for you when it is cooked, steamed, roasted, baked, grilled. Period.

  7. cindi says:

    i have not tried them but really want to… soooooooon… : )

  8. sharon says:

    I use Sacha Inchi oil on my leafy green salads…half and half with olive oil. It’s a great nutty flavor. Also like to spread it on my sprouted whole grain tortillas….half and half with coconut oil.

  9. Karen Beattie says:

    THE LITTLE NUT SHELLS LOOK LIKE PINE NUTS ON YOUR PICTURE POSTING!

  10. Patricia says:

    I really like the Sacha Inchi SEEDS sold by Sequel. I like the raw without anything on them. Funny, to me they taste a little bit like fish. I think this is the “flavor” of omega 3 fatty acids. You only have to eat 5 seeds a day to get the requirements for omega 3 FAs. I keep mine in the freezer.

    • Doris says:

      Thank you for the tip to store them in fridge or freezer. Bought a package in Peru and with only 5 a day they will last some time :-)

  11. Ren says:

    I hate to break it to everyone, but the Savi seeds from Sequel are roasted and not raw and taste like fish because they are rancid! These seeds are best eaten slow dried like the ones from Organic Traditions – they are delicious and they do not taste like stale fish, but have a rich nutty flavor!!!

  12. mary says:

    I was told it is the omega 3 to 6 ratio that determines if a food is good for you. You do not say what this ratio is. Is the omega 3 considerably higher than the amount of omega 6? Thanks,
    Mary

  13. Nicole - Australia says:

    I give my 10 yo son a tablespoon each day, he preffers it better than fish oil.

  14. Chris says:

    Looking forward to articles written by Kevin. This one sounds like it was written by a lawyer with all of the “Can you say healthy…”, “oil *is said to* contain…”, “It’s *said to* have…”, “…you can *guess* at the health benefits…”, “nutrients are *apparently* easier to digest”, “…*likely* to positively benefit…”, and several more of these.
    Also, a couple of sentences sound contradictory: “the oil is extracted by simple cold pressing”, but earlier it mentioned that it tastes like a nut *when roasted*, which is a little confusing because the product you sell is not roasted, right?
    Anyway, your ghost writer needs to work a little harder to sound like your typical honest straight up style of writing.

  15. Attila says:

    Hi Kevin,

    Thank you for the quality information you provide.

    I’d like to ask a question: is it the same with sacha inchi as with palnt-based omega-3 sources usually, that it contains short chain omega-3 fatty acids which the body has a hard time converting into long-chain ones? If so, wouldn’t taking clean fish oil or krill oil be a better idea?

    Attila

  16. kathryn says:

    I love the savi-seeds but cannot find a source that is not cross contaminated with gluten in the processing and packing. Because of this I cannot eat them :(.
    Does anyone know of a place I can purchase them uncontaminated? I’m a vegan and need safe sources. I had to give up hemp because of gluten contamination in the farming. Apparently hemp is sourced from Canada only.
    I think I have found a safe Chia from the Salba company here in Denver Colorado. I am trying them right now.
    I live in Boulder and need clean sources of Superfoods. I seem to be ok with the Sun Warriors Greens.Any ideas from anyone will be much appreciated.!!!!!! :-)

    Thank you and Many Blessings,
    Kathryn/Boulder Colorado

  17. Velda says:

    Kevin, I just heard that you can get Sacha Inchi in supplement form. Have you heard of this? Would recommend a sacha inchi pill, or do you see a problem with it? Thanks,

  18. Susan says:

    I’ve just started seeing a new doctor who advocates the WEE Protocol and the KIM-2 Program (both focus on the balance of Omega-3 and 6). I asked him about Sasha Inchi Oil, and he told me that humans lack the necessary enzyme to convert the ALA in it to EPA and DHA, which is necessary to obtain the benefits of Omega-3, and he wouldn’t recommend consuming it. Kevin, could you comment on this, please?

  19. bob says:

    The Savi seed cocoa covered tasted great as a late snack at 8 pm.
    By midnight I was heaving my guts out with nothing coming up but
    The cocoa covered seeds. Over and over again I was running.
    After a half hour I got it from the other end. I now feel empty
    So maybe I can get some sleep.
    Someone posted these are not raw but roasted? Yes I see that on
    The bag.

    I’m going to stick with my Whole Foods flax milk once I recover.

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