Eating Almonds, Pistachios, Walnuts, Cashews, other nuts linked to lower Diabetes, Heart Disease risk
People who choose nuts as their snack of choice are doing their health a benefit, new research suggests.
A recent study shows that people who regularly eat tree nuts -- including almonds, macadamias, pistachios, walnuts and cashews -- also have lower risks for Type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome and heart disease.
The researchers from Louisiana State University Agricultural Center found that nut consumption is linked with lower levels of an inflammation marker called C-reactive protein (which is associated with heart disease and other chronic conditions) and higher levels of the "good" kind of cholesterol.
In addition, people who regularly ate the tree nuts had lower body mass indexes (BMI, a ratio of height to weight) than people who didn't regularly eat nuts, the study said.
It should be noted that the study was funded by the nonprofit International Tree Nut Council Nutrition Research & Education Foundation. It appeared recently in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition.
The research included 13,292 adults whose diets were analyzed through the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys between 1999 and 2004. The researchers considered a "tree nut consumer" as someone who ate at least a quarter of an ounce of nuts a day. The researchers found that about 18.6 percent of people between ages 19 and 50 and about 21 percent of people ages 51 and older were regular nut consumers.
The researchers found that the prevalence of metabolic syndrome among people who regularly consumed the nuts was 5 percent lower than those who didn't consume the nuts. (Metabolic syndrome is known to be a risk factor for conditions like heart disease and diabetes.)
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