Almonds provide crunch and flavor, good for a snack on the go. You can also add almonds to salads and other dishes. Small quantities of almonds usually fit well into most diets, but eating too many can cause side effects. Understanding the risks helps you appropriately plan your diet and avoid pitfalls.
Eating a large quantity of almonds can trigger weight gain. The recommended serving of almonds stands at 1 oz. because these nuts are high in calories and fat -- 163 calories and 14 g of fat per ounce. You gain a pound if you consume 3,500 calories above what you burn, so adding just 500 calories to your diet each day for a week can make you gain weight. If you consume approximately 3 oz. of almonds each day without accounting for them in your meal plan, you can gain 1 lb. in a week. Even though the fat in almonds is primarily healthy fats, eating 3 oz. of almonds introduces 42 g of fat into your diet. Limit your fat consumption to 20 to 35 percent of your daily calories, or 44 to 78 g if you follow a 2,000-calorie diet, to avoid weight gain.
Almonds are quite high in manganese. Each 1 oz. serving provides you with 0.6 mg of this mineral. Under normal circumstances, this is a good thing -- you need 1.8 to 2.3 mg per day to help your body function properly. If you consume a lot of almonds, particularly on top of a manganese-rich diet, this might trigger drug interactions. High quantities of manganese in your blood can interfere with some antipsychotic drugs, as well as antacids, laxatives, blood pressure medications and certain antibiotics.
Vitamin E Overdose
Including almonds in your diet provides you with vitamin E, which offers antioxidant protection. You get 7.4 mg of vitamin E per ounce of nuts, roughly half the amount you need each day. It takes a lot of almonds to rise above the tolerable upper limit of 1,000 mg per day, but it is possible, especially if you eat a diet rich in vitamin E foods, such as eggs, fortified cereals, spinach and whole grains. Too much vitamin E in your body can trigger an overdose situation, causing lethargy, blurred vision, headaches, diarrhea and flatulence.
One ounce of almonds contains 3.5 g of fiber, an amount that contributes to the quantity you need each day -- 25 to 38 g -- to prevent diarrhea and constipation. However, eating too many almonds can actually cause constipation and abdominal bloating if your body is not used to processing large amounts of fiber. If you consume a lot of almonds, drink water along with them to help your body handle the fiber intake.