According to scientist Penny Kris-Etherton, consuming almonds helped improve HDL functions by increasing the size of HDL particles by 9%. Larger particles of HDL makes it easier for the liver to remove cholesterol from the system. This, in turn, decreases the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Kris-Etherton and her team did note that eating almonds is not enough to eliminate the risk of heart disease completely.
However, snacking on almonds will do wonders for the health because they are loaded with important nutrients. These nutrients include omega-3 fatty acids, which promote better heart health.
Eating almonds found to accelerate the body’s mechanism for eliminating high cholesterol
(Natural News) Balancing cholesterol levels may be as easy as eating a third of a cup of almonds each day. A new study published in Journal of Nutrition confirmed the potent effect the nut had on body cholesterol levels. It was found the almonds worked in two ways: the first is enhancing levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol — otherwise known as “good” cholesterol — and improving the mechanism in which the body removes low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, which has been proven to increase the risk of cardiovascular disorders.
Researchers from the Penn State compared HDL levels among participants who ate 43 grams (that’s roughly 1/3 cup) of almonds with those who ate a banana muffin instead. Those on the almond diet had improved HDL levels and cholesterol functionality. Authors say that this new study builds on existing research that shows the cholesterol-lowering effects of almonds.
Penny Kris-Etherton, a professor of nutrition at the school and one of the authors of the study, said on Science Daily, “there’s a lot of research out there that shows a diet that includes almonds lowers low-density lipoprotein, or LDL cholesterol, which is a major risk factor for heart disease. But not as much was known about how almonds affect HDL cholesterol, which is considered good cholesterol and helps lower your risk of heart disease.”
One of the more intriguing results of the study is that almonds somehow improved HDL function. This meant that compounds in almonds helped the HDL to gather cholesterol from cells and tissues and deposit them in the liver to be broken down.
For the purposes of the study, 48 men and women were placed in a controlled-feeding review. All of the participants were reported to have elevated LDL levels. Over the course of two six-week diet periods, participants had an identical diet except for the daily snack. For one six-week period, participants were given 43 grams of almonds a day. During the control period, they were given a banana muffin instead.
Each six-week diet period was concluded with a cholesterol measurement. Researchers compared the end number with the participant’s baseline taken at the beginning of the study.
They found that the almond diet improved HDL function by 6.4 percent, and increased the size of HDL particles by 19 percent.
Image courtesy of: Rob Stanard Photography