A handful of nuts a day keeps the doctor away

A handful of nuts a day keeps the doctor away

According to a large-scale study from Imperial College London and the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, a handful of nuts a day keeps the doctor away.

The study was an analysis of current research and it showed that people who ate 20g of nuts per day have a lower risk of heart disease, cancer, and other diseases.

The risk of coronary heart disease was decreased by almost 30 percent, the risk of cancer dropped 15 percent, and the risk of an early death rose decreased by 22 percent.

Nut consumption was also linked to a lower risk of dying from respiratory disease by half, and diabetes by almost 40 percent.

The study press release explained the following methods and results:

The research team analysed 29 published studies from around the world that involved up to 819,000 participants, including more than 12,000 cases of coronary heart disease, 9,000 cases of stroke, 18,000 cases of cardiovascular disease and cancer, and more than 85,000 deaths.

While there was some variation between the populations that were studied, such as between men and women, people living in different regions, or people with different risk factors, the researchers found that nut consumption was associated with a reduction in disease risk across most of them.

Study co-author Dagfinn Aune from the School of Public Health at Imperial said: “In nutritional studies, so far much of the research has been on the big killers such as heart diseases, stroke and cancer, but now we’re starting to see data for other diseases.”

We found a consistent reduction in risk across many different diseases, which is a strong indication that there is a real underlying relationship between nut consumption and different health outcomes. It’s quite a substantial effect for such a small amount of food.”

The study included all kinds of tree nuts, including peanuts, which are technically legumes.

What makes nuts so potentially beneficial, said Aune, is their nutritional value: “Nuts and peanuts are high in fibre, magnesium, and polyunsaturated fats — nutrients that are beneficial for cutting cardiovascular disease risk and which can reduce cholesterol levels.”

Some nuts, particularly walnuts and pecan nuts are also high in antioxidants, which can fight oxidative stress and possibly reduce cancer risk. Even though nuts are quite high in fat, they are also high in fibre and protein, and there is some evidence that suggests nuts might actually reduce your risk of obesity over time.”

The study showing that a handful of nuts a day keeps the doctor away was published in the journal BMC Medicine.

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REFERENCES:
1. “A Handful of Nuts a Day Cuts the Risk of a Wide Range of Diseases.” Imperial College London. Imperial College London, 05 Dec. 2016. Web. 10 Dec. 2016.
2. “Nut Consumption and Risk of Cardiovascular Disease, Total Cancer, All-cause and Cause-specific Mortality: A Systematic Review and Dose-response Meta-analysis of Prospective Studies.” BMC Medicine. BioMed Central, n.d. Web. 10 Dec. 2016.

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