Jump to:  A   |   B   |   C   |   D   |   E   |   F   |   G   |   H   |   I   |   J   |   K   |   L   |   M   |   N   |   O   |   P   |   Q   |   R   |   S   |   T   |   U   |   V   |   W   |   X   |   Y

Walnuts, Almonds Help the Hearts of Those With Type 2 Diabetes

Walnuts, Almonds Help the Hearts of Those With Type 2 Diabetes

TUESDAY, Feb. 19, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- If you have type 2 diabetes and you want to do your heart a favor, a new study suggests you should let your diet get a little nutty.

Folks with type 2 diabetes who ate five or more servings of certain kinds of nuts weekly dropped their odds of heart disease by about 20 percent, compared to people who ate less than a serving a month. A serving in the study was defined as one ounce.

Noshing five or more weekly servings of nuts also appears to lower the risk of premature death from heart disease or any other cause by about one-third for people with type 2 diabetes.

Not all nuts are created equal, however. Nuts grown on trees seemed to provide more heart-health benefits than peanuts, which grow underground.

Tree nuts include walnuts, almonds, cashews, Brazil nuts, pistachios, pecans, macadamias, hazelnuts and pine nuts.

"Our findings suggest that nut consumption, especially tree nuts, is beneficial for the prevention of cardiovascular disease [heart disease and stroke] and premature deaths among individuals with diabetes," said study author Gang Liu. He's a research associate in the department of nutrition at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, in Boston.

The study was funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health.

What is it about nuts that makes them so heart-healthy for people with diabetes?

Liu said that nuts seem to help control blood sugar, blood pressure and cholesterol. Eating nuts also appears to help dampen inflammation and improve blood vessel health.

The current study focused on people with type 2 diabetes, and Liu said there isn't yet enough research to know if nuts would provide the same benefit to people with type 1 diabetes.

However, when asked if people without diabetes might see heart benefits from nuts, he said, "Based on our findings and existing evidence, I would say that nuts are beneficial for people with and without diabetes."

Heart specialist Dr. Terrence Sacchi agreed that nuts can be beneficial. "This observational study provides more evidence that certain types of nuts perhaps have some effect on diabetes and heart disease," Sacchi said. He's the chief of cardiology at NewYork-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital in New York City.

But Sacchi added a few caveats. "Nuts are good in moderation, but you can't be eating 18 handfuls of nuts. A serving is a handful. Nuts contain a lot of fat; it's good fat, but gaining weight would counteract any benefit," he explained.

Sacchi also pointed out that it's important to limit the salt in nuts, because excess salt can increase your heart disease and stroke risk. He said the best type of nuts are raw, unsalted nuts.

The study included diet and health information from more than 16,000 people before and after they were diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. The study covered about two decades. Because it was an observational study, it cannot prove cause and effect.

During the study period, more than 3,000 people developed heart disease or stroke. More than 5,600 of the study volunteers died. Of those, nearly 1,700 died from heart disease or stroke.

The researchers found that when people ate more nuts after a diabetes diagnosis, they lowered their risk of heart disease or stroke more than 10 percent. Eating more nuts was also tied to about a 25 percent reduction in premature death from heart disease or another cause.

Each additional serving of nuts was linked to a 3 percent decreased risk of heart disease and stroke, as well as a 6 percent drop in the risk of dying of cardiovascular disease.

The study findings were published online Feb. 19 in the journal Circulation Research.

More information

Learn more about how nuts can benefit your health from the American Heart Association.

SOURCES: Gang Liu, Ph.D., research associate, department of nutrition, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston; Terrence Sacchi, M.D., chief of cardiology, NewYork-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital, New York City; Feb. 19, 2019 Circulation Research, online

Reviewed Date: --

Find a pediatrician
Dr. Rose Cummings
Dr. Alexander Ellis
Dr. Robert Escalera II
Dr. Jonathan Fleenor
Dr. Lopa Hartke
Dr. John Reed
Dr. Elliot Tucker
Dr. Michael Vance
Children's Cardiac Surgery
Dr. James Gangemi
Dr. Philip Smith
Dr. Eric Gyuricsko
Dr. Nicole Nejedly
Dr. Melinda Penn
Dr. Kent Reifschneider
Dr. Melissa Russell
Dr. Marta Satin-Smith
Dr. Sarah Chagnon
Dr. Thomas Enlow
Dr. L. Matthew Frank
Dr. Ralph Northam
Dr. Crystal Proud
Dr. Svinder Toor
Dr. Ryan Williams
Health Tips
Lifestyle Changes Can Help Kids Prevent Type 2 Diabetes
Diabetes: Test Your Knowledge
Food Quiz
Food Safety Quiz
Heart Health Quiz
Heart Quiz for Women Only
Prevention Guidelines for Men 18 to 39
Prevention Guidelines for Women 18 to 39
Prevention Guidelines for Women 40-49
Prevention Guidelines for Women 50-64
Prevention Guidelines for Women 65+
5 Health Symptoms Women Shouldn’t Ignore
Breastfeeding May Lower Women’s Postmenopausal Stroke Risk
Do You Know the Different Heart Attack Symptoms in Men and Women?
Eat This, Not That to Manage Your Chronic Disease
Get Moving to Control Your Blood Sugar
How Belly Fat Is Sabotaging Your Health
It’s Personal: New Guidelines Recommend Customizing Cholesterol Treatment Plans
Ladies: Take Care of Your Heart at Every Age
Love, Marriage, and Diabetes Risk
Making “Cents” of High Blood Pressure
Should You Use an App to Manage Your Diabetes?
Strategies for Heading Off Heart Attacks
The New Battle of the Sexes: Diabetes Strikes Men and Women Differently
When a Chronic Disease Runs in Your Family
Diseases & Conditions
Anomalous Coronary Artery in Children
Diabetes During Pregnancy
Diet and Diabetes
Home Page - Cardiovascular Disorders
Overview of Diabetes Mellitus
Pregnancy and Medical Conditions
Pregnancy and Pre-existing Heart Disease
Teens and Diabetes Mellitus
Type 2 Diabetes in Children

Disclaimer: This information is not intended to substitute or replace the professional medical advice you receive from your child's physician. The content provided on this page is for informational purposes only, and was not designed to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease. Please consult your child's physician with any questions or concerns you may have regarding a medical condition.