This is what happens if you eat cashews instead of chips
If you eliminate potato chips from your diet and replace them with cashew nuts you may be able to spare yourself a heart attack in the long term. Or you might not have to take statins. This is suggested by a small human study that researchers at the private research institute Biofortis [biofortisclinicaltrials.com] have published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
The researchers performed an experiment with 51 participants aged 21-73. Their average LDL [or really the median of their LDL] was 155 mg/dl. That's not high enough for your GP to prescribe statins for you.
The researchers got the participants to obtain 11 percent of their calorie requirements from potato chips for a period of four weeks, and on another occasion to derive a similar percentage from cashew nuts instead.
The study was financed by The Kraft Heinz Co, which had produced the cashew nuts that the researchers used. The chips they used came from a competitor.
After four weeks of eating potato chips the amount of LDL in the participants' blood had increased. After four weeks of eating cashew nuts the participants’ LDL level had decreased.
"This study shows that the consumption of cashews as part of an average American diet by men and women with high LDL cholesterol or who are at risk of high LDL cholesterol results in decreases in total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, and non-HDL cholesterol, consistent with the effects of other tree nuts," the researchers concluded.
"Because cashews are the third most-popular tree nut in the United States, the results are of significant public-health importance because they fill in a knowledge gap and may provide guidance for future dietary recommendations that are specifically aimed at improving heart health."
"Future studies are needed to confirm these findings and to further investigate the bioactive components of cashews that contribute to cardiovascular health."
Am J Clin Nutr. 2017 May;105(5):1070-78.
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