Can eating nuts help your heart?
Heart disorders are a major cause of death in the United States. It is estimated that at least 1 in 4 annual deaths are related to a heart disorder of some form or the other. Heart diseases can have a variety of causes to blame.
It can be due to obesity, lack of exercise, improper nutrition, or hereditary. Whatever the reason, we need to learn how to beat the disorder before it claims one more of its victims.
Thankfully, nuts have been long known to exhibit properties that help reduce the risk of heart disorders in humans. Raw nuts come loaded with nutrients such as healthy fats, proteins, minerals, vitamins, polyphenols, and Fiber.
A study published by the European society of cardiology congress in 2019 found that people who ate nuts twice a week were 17% less likely to suffer from heart-related diseases, as compared to those with no nuts in their diet.
The study included a total of 5432 adults aged 35 and older, with no history of heart disorders. These individuals were randomly selected from the Iranian region of Isfahan, Arak, and Najafabad counties.
They were assessed for the intake of nuts such as almonds, pistachios, hazelnuts, and seeds in 2001 with a food frequency questionnaire. These participants were interviewed every two years until 2013.
Over the years, among the participants, there were 751 cardiovascular events (157 strokes and 594 coronary heart diseases), 179 cardiovascular deaths, and 458 other causes of deaths.
How Eating Nuts Can Help Your Heart
As we mentioned, Nuts are loaded with nutrients like proteins. The nuts you choose to consume may contain one or all of the following nutrients.
- Unsaturated Fats: Nuts contain what we may call ‘good fats.’ Both monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats in nuts can decrease harmful cholesterol levels.
- Pecans, Peanuts, Almonds, Hazelnuts
- Fiber: All nuts contain fiber, which also helps in depleting cholesterol levels. A significant role of Fiber is in how it makes you feel full, so you don’t end up eating more. This can help obesity, which is a significant cause of heart diseases. Fiber can also help reduce type 2 diabetes.
- – Almonds, Pistachios, Hazelnuts, Peanuts
- L-arginine: Nuts are also an adequate source of L-arginine. It is a substance that can improve the functioning of your artery walls and makes them less susceptible to blood clots that can block the blood flow to the heart.
Nuts: Walnuts, Almonds, Pine Nuts
- Omega 3 Fatty acids: Many know Omega 3 fatty acids to be a nutrient found in fish. However, nuts are also a good source of omega 3. It helps prevent dangerous heart rhythms that can cause heart attacks.
- – Walnuts, Chia Seeds, Hazelnuts, Almonds
- Vitamin E: Vitamin E may help stop plaque development in your arteries. Plaque development is notorious in causing chest pain, coronary heart disease, or a heart attack.
- – Almonds, Peanuts, Hazelnuts
- Plant Sterols: Plant sterols are also a nutrient that helps lower cholesterol levels. Plant sterols are often found in margarine and oranges but are prominently found in nuts.
- – Almonds, Walnut, Pecans, Pistachios
The Bottom Line
Having discussed the many benefits of Nuts on our health, you should make haste and include them in your everyday diet. However, there are nuts you find in the supermarket which possess sugar additives and are extra roasted. Avoid them and choose raw nuts instead.
Soak nuts like an almond in water before consuming as it is easier to digest and the nutrients are more conveniently dispersed in the body. It hardly matters what kind of nuts you consume as most are brimming with the nutrients mentioned above.
Nut oils are also loaded with nutrients but do not pack the punch that raw nuts have. Use nut oils in moderation, as it is still oil and does contain high fats and calories.
Now for those who are allergic to nuts, there are still holistic alternatives to reduce the risk of heart diseases. They are your usual stress management, more exercise, proper organic diet, rest, and less smoking and alcohol consumption.
Heart disease is a common problem in the United States. Every 40 seconds, someone in the states suffers from a heart attack. With the newly founded benefits of nuts, heart disorders can now be bought under control.