Of all places, Harvard University published a study that found that regular nut eaters were less likely to die of cancer or heart disease — in fact, were less likely to die of any cause.
While nuts are well known to be heart healthy, the Harvard study is the largest ever done on whether eating them affects mortality.
Researchers tracked over 100,000 men and women and found that those who ate nuts roughly every day were 20% less likely to die during the 30 year study period than those who never ate nuts. Eating nuts less often lowered the death risk too, in direct proportion to consumption.
The risk of dying of heart disease dropped 29% and the risk of dying of cancer fell 11% among those who had nuts seven or more times a week compared with people who never ate them.
Any special kind of nuts?
The benefits were seen with pistachios, almonds, peanuts, walnuts and other tree nuts. The researchers did not look at how the nuts were prepared (oiled or salted, raw or roasted).
"There's a general perception that if you eat more nuts you're going to get fat. Our results show the opposite," said Dr. Ying Bao of Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston.
The study was later published in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Get the side benefit? Nut eaters stayed slimmer.
Many previous studies tie nut consumption to lower risks of heart disease, diabetes, colon cancer and other maladies. In 2003, the Food and Drug Administration said a fistful of nuts a day as part of a low-fat diet may reduce the risk of heart disease.
The heart association recommends four servings of unsalted, un-oiled nuts a week and warns against eating too many, since they are dense in calories. A new, tasty and fun way to have a healthy lifestyle…Enjoy!!