Studies have shown conclusively the health benefits of adding nuts to your diet.
In a Nurse’s Health Study found that women who consumed 5 ounces or more of nuts in there diet four times a week were 40% less likely to die from coronary disease. (BMJ 1998;317:1341-1345)
In a Iowa Women’s Health study, women who ate nuts or seeds were 40% less likely to die of coronary disease. (N Engl Med 1996; 334: 1156-1162)
A study performed with the Seventh-Day Adventists who ate nuts more than 4 times a week were half as likely to die of a heart attack. (Arch Intern Med 1992; 152:1416 -1424)
Another study by Physicians’ Health showed that men who ate nuts at least twice a week had half the rate of sudden cardiac death. (Arch Intern Med 2002; 162: 1382-1387).
A study in Circulation (2004; 109: 1609-1614) supported that when walnuts were substituted for about one third of the calories supplied by olives or other mono saturated fats, the elasticity of the arteries increased by 64%, and levels of vascular cell adhesion molecules were reduced.
There are numerous studies showing that diets containing nuts including; walnuts, almonds, peanuts, pistachios, macadamia nuts, pecans and hazelnuts lowered LDL cholesterol levels by about 10 to 15 points. Nuts also have shown to have a positive effect on lowering high blood pressure by helping to dilate blood vessels due to the presence of the amino acid arginine. Also certain nuts such as walnuts , and pecans contain tryptophan, which can have an affect on the brain by stimulating the production of serotonin which has clinically shown to help improve depression and promote relaxation.
It should be noted that nuts are high in calories and easy to overeat. But for people who are trying to lose weight studies have shown that although an ounce of nuts equals about 170 to 180 calories people on a diet tend to be more compliant with their diets because the fat and fiber content of nuts makes them very filling and a satisfying snack.
The health benefits of nuts should not be overlooked. They are excellent sources of protein, minerals (magnesium and copper), “good” monosaturated fats, vitamin E, folic acid, fiber and natural occurring cholesterol – lowering compound called plant sterols.
So start adding nuts to your diet today. At The Florida Center For Functional Medicine, Dr. Tuchinsky recommends to all his patients to add nuts to there diet at least 4 times weekly. Start today by making healthy choices at meals and when you snack
Dr. David B. Tuchinsky, D.C., PLLC