A recent study has found yet another health benefit of eating nuts. According to the study, nuts are full of nutrients that may help decrease the risk of cardiovascular or coronary heart disease.
The study, done by researchers at the American College of Cardiology, is one of the largest studies done on the relationship between cardiovascular disease and the consumption of nuts. The nuts used in the study consisted of tree nuts, like almonds, cashews, macadamias, pecans, pistachios, and walnuts. Peanuts, though technically legumes, were included as well as they are nutritionally similar to tree nuts.
With the Urgent Care Association of American showing about three million patients visit health centers each week, the researchers had plenty of data to work with. The study looked at information gathered from 210,000 healthcare professionals over a 32-year period. Throughout the study, the participants answered a questionnaire every two years. They provided information regarding their medical history, health conditions, and overall lifestyle.
The results showed that participants who consumed five or more servings of nuts each week had a 14% lower risk of cardiovascular disease and a 20% lower risk of coronary heart disease. Furthermore, the study found an inverse relationship between stroke risk and consumption of peanuts and walnuts. Seeing as how Americans consumed about 120 million pounds of peanut butter each year between 2008 and 2014, these results are good news for those who consume nut products on a regular basis.
Researchers also found that those participants who consumed the most nuts were more likely to have better heart health overall. Walnuts were shown as one of the most beneficial nuts, with a 19% reduction in cardiovascular disease and a 21% reduction in coronary heart disease. With other tree nuts, those who consumed them two or more times each week showed a 15% lower risk of cardiovascular disease and a 23% lower risk of coronary heart disease.
While this study was based on self-reported questionnaires, the results support previously found evidence as well. Peanuts and tree nuts are full of protein and Omega-3 fatty acids, which help promote joint, heart, and brain health. And better yet, nuts contain mono and polyunsaturated fats, both of which are heart healthy. Overall, nuts contain plenty of good nutrients that can promote heart health.
Millions of people around the world enjoy nut products on a daily basis. So whether you eat nuts for the flavor or the health benefits, know that you can fully enjoy both.