Eating nuts helps lowers heart disease risk in people with metabolic syndrome (MetS) or those with excess abdominal fat, high blood sugar and high blood pressure, say researchers.
MetS symptoms increase the risk of developing type 2 diabetes and heart disease, the Journal of Proteome Research reported, citing a statement from the University of Barcelona.
Cristina Andres-Lacueva and colleagues from the varsity with the Human Nutrition Unit of the Rovira i Virgili University explain that the rise in obesity worldwide means more and more patients have MetS.
To check the benefits of nut consumption, researchers put 22 MetS patients on a nut-enriched diet for 12 weeks and compared them to another group of 20 patients who avoided nuts.
The scientists analyzed the compounds excreted in patients’ urine and found evidence of several healthful changes, including a boost in patients’ levels of serotonin metabolites.
Serotonin, a chemical, helps decrease feelings of hunger, makes people feel happier and improves heart health, the researchers said.