Walnuts are generally very nutritious and protect our body from deficiencies. There are 20 species found all over the world. One of them is the African walnut scientifically known as Tetracarpidium conophorum. It is cultivated and consumed in many parts of Africa such as Nigeria, Togo, Cameroon, Republic of the Congo, Sierra-Leone and Democratic Republic of Congo. In Nigeria, this healthy but is called Nigerian walnut. This article discusses some of the health benefits of Nigerian walnuts.
Nigerian walnuts are those dark brown or black fragile shell that contains a single seed, round like a stone which is being sold in transparent nylons by the roadside.
In Nigeria, the African walnut is known as Awusa, Asala, or Ukpa in Yoruba language. It is known as Oke okpokirinya among the Igbos. It is called Gawudi bairi in Hausa and known as Okhue or Okwe by the Bini tribe of Edo State. Walnuts are being taken as a snack and is mainly cultivated by small scales in the Southwestern region. It may be considered as a poor man’s food, but the health benefits of Nigerian walnuts will surprise you. 
Nutritional content of Nigerian walnuts
They contain vitamin B1, B2, B6, C, E, and minerals like sodium, iron, folate, manganese. The vitamins help to convert food to energy and serve as antioxidants, while the mineral content helps in the proper functioning of the heart, muscles, and digestive system.
Health benefits of Nigerian Walnuts
1. Weight management
Walnuts are known to contain quality fiber and protein, which helps to keep you satisfied, thereby reducing the intake of more food. Many studies have supported this, in fact, one study boldly stated that walnuts can lead to decreased appetite and hunger. 
2. Helps with sleeping disorders
Melatonin, a hormone which induces sleep, is present in walnuts. So people dealing with insomnia could take them before bedtime as it suppresses sleep disorders and promotes quality sleep. 
3. Good for pregnancy
The omega-3 fatty acid contained in walnuts are good for pregnant women as it prevents the baby from risks of allergies and improves its cognitive features like vision and hearing. It can also be used to boost fertility. It is rich in folate, which is imperative for women during pregnancy. 
4. Improves skin and hair quality
Walnuts contain biotin, which promotes hair growth, prevents hair loss, and also strengthens the hair. Vitamin E helps the skin look refreshed.
5. Prevents liver damage
Certain antioxidants in walnuts help the liver function properly, thereby preventing food chemicals from damaging the liver. Walnuts have more antioxidants compared to many other healthy Nigerian nuts. 
6. Reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes
Since walnuts help to control weight gain, which is one of the major causes of diabetes, eating them regularly will help regulate your blood sugar reduces the risk of the disease. 
7. Good for brain function
Walnuts contain nutrients that support the proper function of the brain, especially in older ones. It helps with faster processing speed and better memory. Walnuts are also good sources of vitamin B6, which improves the cognitive ability of the brain.
8. Healthy Teeth
Walnuts are rich in plant protein, folacin, dietary fiber, magnesium, iron, thiamine, niacin, vitamin E, vitamin B6, potassium and zinc, which are all good for the teeth. The magnesium and phosphorus present walnuts is crucial for good dental health. So, eat walnuts for a healthy teeth. 
Walnuts have proven to be really useful as they help protect the body against diseases and strengthen the immune system. These health benefits of African walnut will be gotten if they are consumed often. It should be added to our daily diet as it contains essential fiber, vitamins, and minerals.