A Pilot Study on the Effects of Nut Consumption on Cardiovascular Biomarkers.
Cureus. 2020 Jun 24 ;12(6):e8798. Epub 2020 Jun 24. PMID: 32742827
Jacob J Adashek
BACKGROUND: Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality in the United States and changes in lifestyle can minimize the likelihood of succumbing to heart disease. Anti-inflammatory agents are commonly used to reduce the chronic inflammatory state behind the pathogenesis of CVD. Multiple studies have been published correlating nut consumption with a reduction in both heart attacks and strokes. The goal of this study is to determine to what extent the consumption of almonds, hazelnuts, and walnuts have on the blood markers associated with cardiac disease and inflammation.
METHODS: This was a six-week study in which subject's baseline values act as controls. Fasting blood draws occurred at week 0, week 2, and after four weeks of intervention (week 6). All participants had undesirable lipid profiles and no medications related to heart disease.
RESULTS: Total cholesterol (TC): high-density lipoprotein (HDL-C) ratio was lowered a statistically significant amount at the six-week time point (3.89± 0.74) compared to both the zero-week (4.93 ± 1.16, p<0.01) and two-week (4.63± 1.20, p<0.5) timepoints. Low-density lipoprotein (LDL) measurements were lowered a statistically significant amount at the six-week time point (135.6± 15.0 mg/dL) compared to the zero-week (159.7 ± 12.3 mg/dL, p<0.01). Erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) was lowered a statistically significant amount at six-week time point (10.44± 5.05 mm/h) compared to the zero-week (14.44 ± 5.12 mm/h, p<0.01).
CONCLUSIONS: Blood markers associated with CVD specifically and the general marker for inflammation associated with many chronic diseases can be favorably modified with the consumption of specific nuts as demonstrated by this study.