Nuts eaters are thinner, have lower cholesterol, better bones and a lower risk of cardiac distress and cancer
Want to reduce your risk of heart attack... by 60%? Eat Nuts. Besides this huge percentage, research is showing that people who eat more nuts are on the whole thinner, have lower levels of LDL cholesterol and better bones. A new study even points to a lower risk for cancer and inflammation from eating nuts.
In the March, 2008 edition of the journal Blood, researchers reported that NB-kappaB deactivation in cellular responses may be the result of anacardic acid found in cashew nuts. The researchers concluded that anacardic acid has a role in preventing and treating cancer.
The new research is confirming and adding evidence to the growing body of work that is documenting the health benefits of nut consumption. A study done in the 1990s involving a large group of people in California, found that eating nuts was one of the four top elements for extending longevity. The benefits seemed to cross many statistical lines... positive effects were recorded for men, women, vegetarians, meat-eaters, fat people, thin people, the old, the young, those who exercise and those who donít.
Other fairly large studies have confirmed that eating nuts has very positive cardiac results and reduces risks of developing diabetes, dementia, advanced macular degeneration, gallstones and stroke. The research suggests that daily nut ingestion helps individuals gain an extra five to six years of life free of coronary disease, and an overall longevity increase of two years.
People eating nuts on a very frequent basis fare the best, as benefits appear to increase with increased consumption. Fatal coronary disease and the risk of developing type 2 diabetes appear to decrease steadily as nut consumption increases to once or more per day.
In the last 20-30 years, the food industry that perpetuated the myth that "fat makes you fat", which caused many americans to avoid nuts in their diet (as nuts do contain fat). As we have actually come to know, there are many different kinds of fat and in a Nurses' Health Study, it was found that frequent nut consumers were actually a little thinner on average than those who almost never consumed nuts. In this same study, it was found that daily ingestion of almonds or peanuts for six months resulted in little or no increase in body weight. As authors Dr. M.F. Roisen, M.D. and Dr. M. Oz, M.D., point out in their popular "You On A Diet" book, nuts satisfy hunger and provide a wealth of nutrients, creating a feeling of satiety and comfort.
Nuts have a fatty acid profile that favorably affects blood lipids and lipoproteins. They are low in saturated fat and high in unsaturated fatty acids in the form of the monounsaturates oleic and palmitoleic acids.
Nuts provide magnesium, boron and zinc, all are essential nutrients for good bone health. They are a tremendous source of the antioxidant manganese. Nuts are also a good source of vitamin E, folic acid, copper, and the amino acid arginine. Some nuts contain tryptophan, a stimulator of serotonin in the brain that alleviates depression and boosts relaxation. Nuts are high in fiber and phytochemicals that protect against cancer and other chronic diseases.
All Nuts are Good, But Some Are Better
The Nursesí Health Study found that peanuts, which are really legumes (beans), appeared to be just as effective in reducing the risk of coronary heart disease as tree nuts. Research subjects were fed nuts as part of their diet for several weeks and it was found that walnuts, almonds, hazelnuts, peanuts, pecans, pistachio nuts, and macadamia nuts altered the composition of the blood in ways considered to reduce coronary risk.
Certain nuts contain additional health benefits. Walnuts are high in heart healthy omega-3 fatty acids, while Almonds are particularly nutritious (100 grams of nuts yielding 16.9 grams of protein). Almonds also contain vitamin B-17, known as laetrile, and many believe it is an effective natural cancer cure. Brazil nuts are rich in selenium, and only three of them a day will provide you with an amount in excess of the recommended daily allowance in a highly bio-available form.
So it's pretty obvious and overwhelming evidence and it's time to run out and stock up and bags of nuts and begin eating them on a very regular basis...right? Well, wait just a quick minute.
The farming and production of nuts, here and around the world, utilizes some fairly heavy use of pesticides. All kinds. And more bad news: only about 1% of U.S. farmland producing tree nuts is certified organic. Thanks to modern agri-corps you can reap the benefits of nuts along with a nice portion of poison, so it's kind of a wash. Just make sure you select Organic nuts. Grow your own if you can.
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