A new research study from Yale University is showing an amazing benefit of adding just 56 grams of walnuts a day to your diet. Researchers chose 46 adults between the ages of 30 and 75.
All participants had a body mass index (BMI) higher than 25 and a waist circumference of at least 40 inches for men and 35 inches for women. All of the participants had a heightened risk of metabolic syndrome, which is a factor of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
Half of the participants were assigned a diet that included 56 grams of shelled, unroasted walnuts. The other half were given a diet that did not include walnuts. The results showed that people on the walnut enhanced diets showed improved function in endothelial cells that make up the inner lining of blood vessels.
These cells help with blood clotting and the formation of new blood cells, as well as regulating inflammation and controlling blood pressure.
The lead author of the research study, Dr. David Katz, says, “We know that improving diets tends to be hard, but adding a single food is easy. Our theory is that if a highly nutritious, satiating food like walnuts is added to the diet, there are dual benefits: the benefits of that nutrient rich addition and removal of the less nutritious foods.”
As amazing as the benefits of Walnuts can be, sadly according to World’s Healthiest Foods: “Most U.S. adults have yet to discover the benefits of walnuts. A recent study has determined that only 5.5% of all adults (ages 19-50) consume tree nuts of any kind! This small percentage of people actually do a pretty good job of integrating tree nuts (including walnuts) into their diet, and average about 1.25 ounces of tree nuts per day. But the other 94.5% of us report no consumption of tree nuts whatsoever. In a recent look at the nutritional differences between tree nut eaters and non-eaters, researchers have reported some pretty notable findings: on a daily average, tree nut eaters take in 5 grams more fiber, 260 milligrams more potassium, 73 more milligrams of calcium, 95 more milligrams of magnesium, 3.7 milligrams more vitamin E, and 157 milligrams less sodium!”
So, now that you know, go out and grab a bag of fresh walnuts and get cracking! Your heart will thank you for it.