Topical Area: Dietary Bioactive Components
Nuts are a rich source of nutrients, fiber, antioxidants and phytochemicals which may reduce the risk for chronic diseases. Many studies have examined the effects of individual types of nuts only. There is limited research investigating if the beneficial effects extend to the consumption of a nut mixture, which is how people more often choose to consume nuts. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to examine the effects of daily mixed nut consumption on satiety, postprandial glucose, insulin response, anxiety and bowel movement patterns in healthy young adults.
Subjects (N = 20) were randomized into two groups either consuming 42g (250 Kcal) of mixed nuts (n = 10, 9 females, 1 male, age 24.5±1.2 y, BMI 24.8±1.5 kg/m2) containing cashews, almonds, pecans, peanuts, walnuts, pistachios, brazil and macadamia nuts or 46g of iso-Kcaloric lightly salted potato chips (n = 10, 8 females, 2 males, age 24.2±1.0 y, BMI 23.3±1.0 kg/m2) every day for three weeks. Measurements for blood pressure (BP) using an automatic BP monitor, waist to hip ratio, satiety using a visual analogue scale, anxiety using the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory Scale and bowel movement patterns using a 7-day bowel movement diary were taken at baseline and wk 3. Plasma glucose and insulin levels were measured at baseline, 45mins postprandial and at wk 3 and analyzed using an ultrasensitive insulin enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay.
Results : Both types of snack consumption increased satiety while only mixed nut consumption improved postprandial glucose and insulin levels (P< 0.05). Body weight, BMI (body mass index), body fat, systolic and diastolic BP, waist and hip circumferences, waist to hip ratio, and anxiety were not significantly different among groups. Both the potato chip and mixed nut groups significantly reduced straining during bowel movements however only the mixed nut group significantly increased stool amount (P< 0.05).
The consumption of mixed nuts stabilized postprandial glucose and insulin responses and improved bowel movement patterns more than the potato chip group suggesting that the regular consumption of mixed nuts may reduce the risk for developing diabetes as well as improve gut health.
Funding Sources : American Heart Association (16GRNT31360007)