Loaded with healthy fats and fibre, these little tree nuts have a tremendous impact on cardiovascular health and weight loss. Read on to know more about the amazing health benefits of almonds.
What are the Health Benefits of Almonds?
The regular consumption of almonds in appropriate quantities has been repeatedly proven by research to improve cardiovascular health and aid weight loss.
Almonds contain about 50% fat. The fats in almonds, however, are considered beneficial because they predominantly consist of monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) which are regarded as “healthy” fats.
Here are a few scientifically proven reasons to eat almonds.
Reduction of “Bad” Cholesterol
Almonds are among the nuts approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to have the potential of reducing the risk of cardio-vascular disease.
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The consumption of around 28–30 g of almonds a day, roughly a handful, as part of a healthy diet that’s low in saturated fat, reduces the total blood cholesterol and LDL “bad” cholesterol levels and inadvertently promotes heart health.
Researchers have calculated that for every 7g of almonds taken in a day, the LDL cholesterol is reduced by 1%. However, nuts are energy-dense food and should be consumed in moderation.
A study was done where two groups of people with high BMI were asked to follow specific diets for 6 months. One group of individuals followed a low-fat diet while the other group had a moderate-fat diet along with almonds. Both diets had the same number of calories in total.
Results at the end of the period showed that the almond group had a greater reduction in waist circumference by 50% and over 60% greater loss in fat mass than the low-fat diet group.
Almonds are also proven to have a strong satiating effect.
Lowering of Uric Acid in Blood
High serum uric acid (UA) levels frequently indicate kidney disease, and may also be associated with coronary artery disease, heart attack and stroke.
Research has found that consuming almonds for 6 weeks can lower blood uric acid levels by approximately 12%. In this study, 10g of almonds were consumed every day after being soaked overnight, peeled and eaten before breakfast in the morning.
Blood Sugar Regulation
Research has shown that having nuts along with a carbohydrate-rich meal blunts the post-meal sugar spike and insulin response of the body to a significant degree, thereby achieving better regulation of blood sugar levels.
-Almonds are a rich source of healthy fats and fibre
-Almonds can lower cholesterol, help in weight loss and improve heart health
-Almonds can also lower blood uric acid levels and modulate sugar spikes after a meal
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Disclaimer: The quantity of nuts recommended to achieve specific health targets is based on studies mostly done among the European population. Kindly consult with recent national guidelines and your doctor before making significant dietary changes.
-Richardson DP, Astrup A, Cocaul A, Ellis P. The nutritional and health benefits of almonds: a healthy food choice. Food Sci. Technol. Bull. Funct. Foods. 2009;6:41-50.
-Jamshed, H., Gilani, AuH., Sultan, F.A.T. et al. Almond supplementation reduces serum uric acid in coronary artery disease patients: a randomized controlled trial. Nutr J 15, 77 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12937-016-0195-4