Eat Tree Nuts to Significantly Lower Risk of Metabolic Syndrome
Sure, nuts may deliver a higher percentage of fat calories per ounce than other snacks, but don’t call these little nuggets of nutrition unhealthy. New research indicates that tree nuts may reduce risk for metabolic syndrome.You may have heard of metabolic syndrome (MetS), a disorder that’s characterized by the co-occurrence of three out of five health conditions: abdominal obesity, high blood pressure, elevated fasting plasma glucose, high serum triglycerides levels and low high-density cholesterol (HDL) levels. It is estimated that 34 percent of the U.S. adult population struggles MetS, a diagnosis that comes with an increased risk for cardiovascular disease.
As the incidence MetS of continues to skyrocket in many unsuspecting individuals, a wealth of scientific evidence now shows that eating a variety of tree nuts is not only beneficial to our health, but also helps lower obesity prevalence in the adult population and aids weight management as part of a natural food diet.
How Tree Nuts Improve Reduce Metabolic Syndrome Abnormalities and Improve Weight Loss Efforts
A research team from Loma Linda University in California studied 803 Seventh-day Adventist adults to establish an association between tree nuts (almonds, Brazil nuts, cashews, hazelnuts, macadamias, pecans, pine nuts, pistachios and walnuts), metabolic syndrome and obesity in a population with a wide range of nut intake ranging from never to daily. Publishing the results of their work in the journal PLOS ONE, the scientists were able to determine that the amount of tree nuts consumed daily correlated directly to the prevalence of obesity in the adult participants.
The researchers used a validated food frequency questionnaire to determine the daily intake of tree nuts and peanuts, both together and separately. The participants were then rated as to high tree nut consumption, averaging 16 grams per day, to low consumption with an average intake of 5 grams per day. Lead study author, Dr. Karen Jaceldo-Siegl noted, “Our results showed that one serving (28g or 1 ounce) of tree nuts per week was significantly associated with 7 percent less MetS… doubling this consumption could potentially reduce MetS risk by 14 percent.”
One Large Handful of Tree Nuts Every Day Lowers the Risk of Chronic Disease and Obesity
Regular consumption of tree nuts can lower the risks associated with MetS as they help to balance oxidized cholesterol ratios and improve vascular function, largely due to the quality, monounsaturated fat content and wealth of minerals supplied in a handful of the small tasty gems.
Another benefit found by the researchers is lowered body weight. Although nuts are relatively high in calories, they squelch appetite by providing a solid source on non-animal protein and have little to no impact on blood glucose levels. Additionally, there is some evidence to suggest that the monounsaturated fats are conserved by the body for cellular metabolism and are not readily burned as a source of fuel by the body. Dr. Jaceldo-Siegl concluded, “We found that high tree nut consumers had significantly lower prevalence of obesity compared to the low tree nut consumers… and, high consumers of tree nuts had the lowest prevalence of obesity when compared to the low peanut/tree nut groups.” Nutrition experts recommend eating 1.5 ounces of tree nuts each day, the amount in a good size handful, to ward off chronic disease processes and help keep weight in check.
John Phillip is a Certified Nutritional Consultant and diet, health and nutrition researcher and author with a passion for understanding weight loss challenges and encouraging health modification through natural diet, lifestyle and targeted supplementation. John’s passion is to research and write about the cutting edge alternative health technologies that affect our lives. Discover the latest alternative health news concerning diabetes, heart disease, cancer, dementia and weight loss at My Optimal Health Resource