Go nuts for almonds

| Post published on June 1, 2005
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Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant, protecting cells from the damage caused by free radicals. A new study published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association confirms that eating almonds significantly increases vitamin E levels and lowers cholesterol levels. Researchers compared the effects on healthy men and women of consuming three different diets; a control diet with no almonds, a low-almond diet and a high-almond diet. The low-almond and high-almond diets included one to two handfuls of almonds a day respectively, representing 10 and 20 per cent of the total calorie intake. Changes in vitamin E and cholesterol levels were measured after each diet had been followed for four weeks. The researchers found that when people ate 10 per cent of their calories from almonds, they increased their vitamin E levels by 13.7 per cent. Participants consuming 20 percent of their calories from almonds increased their vitamin E levels by 18.7 per cent. In addition participants consuming the high-almond diet reduced their total cholesterol levels by five per cent and lowered their LDL (or ‘bad’ cholesterol) levels by nearly seven per cent. So eating a handful of almonds a day could be great way to obtain vitamin E while keeping down your cholesterol.

Jambazian PR, Haddad E, Rajaram S, Tanzman J, Sabate J. 2005. Almonds in the diet simultaneously improve plasma alpha-tocopherol concentrations and reduce plasma lipids. Journal of the American Dietetic Association. 105 (3) 449-54.

About the author
Dr. Justine Butler
I joined Viva! as a health campaigner in 2005 after graduating from Bristol University with a PhD in molecular biology. My scientific training helped me research and write numerous reports, guides and fact sheets for Viva! including Meat the Truth, Fish-Free for Life, One in Nine (breast cancer and diet) and the substantial report on the detrimental health effects of consuming dairy; White Lies. This accompanied Viva!’s report The Dark Side of Dairy which spelt out the inherent cruelty of dairy farming. We were the first UK group to take on the dairy industry in this way, and many of our supporters go vegan after reading these reports.

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