Nut Consumption May Reduce Risk of Certain Cancers
Researchers have long theorized that nut consumption is associated with a lower rate of cancer and type-2 diabetes, but previous evidence has been inconsistent. Now, the first systematic review and analysis on the subject has concluded that nut consumption is, in fact, associated with a lower rate of certain cancers, but does not appear to have an effect on type-2 diabetes.
For their analysis, the researchers examined data from 36 observational studies, which included 30,708 patients in total. After examining the data, the researchers found that higher nut consumption was associated with a lower risk of colorectal cancer, endometrial cancer, and pancreatic cancer. It was not associated with a lower risk of other types of cancer or type-2 diabetes.
Researchers from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, and the University of Minnesota conducted the study. It was published on June 16, 2015, in Nutrition Reviews.
Nuts have been receiving an increasing amount of attention due to their health benefits. Despite this, the study found that nuts only account for approximately 8% of the average person’s daily intake of antioxidants. This is likely because many people are not aware of their health benefits and/or are wary of the high fat and calories in nuts.
However, nuts actually contain healthy polyunsaturated and monosaturated fats rather than artery-clogging saturated fats. They are nutrient dense foods that are rich in unsaturated fatty acids, vegetable protein, fiber, minerals and tocopherols. Previous studies have linked nuts with reduced risk of coronary artery disease, diabetes and hypertension.