In the report, one of the clinical studies investigated the effects almonds have in improving the levels of high-density lipoproteins (HDL) cholesterol. The researchers recruited 150 patients with pre-existing coronary heart disease from the Aga Khan University Hospital in Pakistan. The participants were then divided into three groups: the no-intervention group, the Pakistani almonds group, and the American almonds group. Those in the almond groups were given 10 grams (g) of almonds per day, which is about 12 to 15 almonds. The participants' blood samples were collected for lipid profiling, body weight, and blood pressure, and their dietary patterns were monitored at the start, the sixth week, and the 12th week of the study.
Results revealed that almond consumption reduced the participants' total cholesterol, including low-density lipoproteins (LDL) cholesterol and very low density lipoprotein (VLDL) cholesterol, triglycerides, and the atherogenic index, which is strongly associated with chronic inflammation and the development of vascular diseases. The HDL cholesterol levels of the participants improved as well.
Another study on almond consumption found that the nutritious nut can reduce the risk of Type 2 diabetes. Diabetes is a condition in which the blood glucose level in the blood is too high due to improper glucose metabolism. Generally, it is preceded by a group of conditions called metabolic syndrome. While bad dietary habits can cause Type 2 diabetes, nutritional improvements can reverse some of the harmful effects.
The study found that almond consumption offered various ways to counter imbalances and restore homeostasis. In the study, the researchers found that eating 60 grams of almonds every day for four weeks caused reductions in insulin resistance, fasting insulin, and glucose. The intake of almonds also resulted in other health outcomes, such as improvements in cholesterol ratios, body fat percentage, and nutritional status.
Almonds can be eaten either raw or roasted. Both varieties provide nutritional benefits, although raw almonds provide more naturally occurring beneficial fats because some are lost during the roasting process. Almonds can also be added in smoothies or in Greek yogurt.
Almonds are not only tasty, they are nutritious as well. Eating around 23 almonds each day is an easy way to include many essential nutrients into one’s diet. Almonds are packed with vitamin E, calcium, magnesium, and potassium. Moreover, almonds are a good source of protein and fiber, while being naturally low in sugar. Twenty-three almonds contain 13g of healthy unsaturated fats, one gram of saturated fat, and no cholesterol or salt. Almonds also contain the greatest amounts of protein, fiber, calcium, vitamin E, riboflavin, and niacin among all tree nuts.
In addition to almonds’ cholesterol and blood glucose benefits, they are also good for maintaining a healthy weight. The fiber and fat that almonds contain can keep a person feeling full and satiated so that you will not have the urge to overeat. The magnesium content of almonds also helps control blood sugar, which is important in reducing food cravings.
Another benefit of almond consumption is that it promotes gastrointestinal health. Since almonds are rich in fiber, they provide probiotic properties, which contribute to gastrointestinal health. Probiotics cannot be digested but can serve as food for the good bacteria in the digestive tract and help maintain a healthy balance in the gut microbiome. (Related: Eating almonds can reduce heart disease risks, belly fat.)
Read more news stories and studies on superfoods like almonds by going to Superfoods.news.