Study: Almonds lower 10-year risk of chronic heart disease

NEW YORK — New research from the University of Toronto suggests that eating almonds with a heart-healthy diet lowers a person’s risk for chronic heart disease. The clinical study results, published in the British Journal of Nutrition from the Cambridge University press, show the effect of eating almond among 27 adults with an average age of 64 years.

The study’s participants all had elevated LDL cholesterol, and ate a diet suggested by the National Cholesterol Education Program, along with two to four ounces of almonds, one to two ounces of almonds. The control group ate muffins, made to have a similar nutritional makeup as almonds.

Those who consumed almonds saw an increase in oleic acid and other fatty acids. And the more almonds a subject ate, the lower their ten-year risk for chronic heart disease. For every extra ounce of almonds a person consumed, their risk was lowered by 3.5%

"The favorable effect of almonds, particularly the monounsaturated fat component, on heart disease risk in this study is consistent with previous research, including Mediterranean diet research," Cyrill Kendall, the study’s principal investigator, said. ”The improvement in serum fatty acid profiles observed with almond consumption provides further support for a diet rich in monounsaturated fats for overall cardiovascular health.”

In addition to the almond study, a recent Harvard University review of 27 studies on nut consumption showed that four weekly servings of nuts lowers a persons risk of diabetes by 13% and risk of fatal heart attacks by 24%. 

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