Almonds and lowering cholesterol

This delicious little nut originates from the Levant, a region in the middle east alongside the east coast of the Mediterranean sea. This nut has been one of the first nut that was domesticated, spread by humans as far east as the Indus and nowadays grown as far west as California, in fact the united states are now the largest producers in the world for almonds.

Studies have indicated that almonds have a wide range of beneficial effects on your health if this little nut (or several other kinds of nuts) are included in your daily diet and this is of no surprise considering that this nut is stocked full of healthy cholesterol lowering fats, rich of vitamin E, dietary fiber, certain B vitamins and other essential minerals.

It is then of course no surprise that almonds have been studied extensively trough history but in recent years have been looked at more closely for the benefit this may give to people suffering from high cholesterol, considering some studies indicate that adding 25grams to your diet may give significant results already to cholesterol levels for example we have this study from 2005 out of Iran.

A low dose almond-based diet decreased LDL while preserving HDL

The aim of the study was to compare how almonds would affect your lipid profile or cholesterol and see what the effects where on the patients with high cholesterol or hyperlipidemic.

This study had a 8week dietary trial with both diets identical except for 25grams of almonds. The subjects did a diet for 4weeks then had a washout period then did the other diet for  4weeks.

The conclusion was that even a small dose of only 25grams was enough to provide a favorable lipid altering effect by the almonds.

On a side note: Wild Almonds that grow in the Levant are deadly and should never be eaten, they are more bitter then the domesticated kind and contain a deadly poison which might kill you even after eating only a few of them . how we started domestication was by selecting the sweet kind of this nut and use that instead but how they managed to pick them is unknown.

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