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The Perfect Snack for Healthy Gut Bacteria & a Healthy Heart

Posted by on February 9, 2020 in Food, Drink & Nutrition, Health, Prevention with 0 Comments

By Dr. Joseph Mercola | mercola.com

The next time you’re searching for a healthy snack, consider walnuts. Raw, organic nuts are a great source of healthy fat, vitamins, antioxidants, and fiber. And according to a recent study, munching on walnuts can help promote a healthy gut, as well as a healthy heart.

Researchers at Penn State placed 42 overweight or obese adults between the ages of 30 and 65 on an “average American diet” for two weeks. After the two-week period, each of the participants was placed on one of three diets, all of which consisted of less saturated fat. One diet included eating whole walnuts each day, while the other two included vegetable oils, in place of walnuts.

The participants followed their directed diets for a period of six weeks. At the end of the six-week period, researchers collected fecal samples from each participant in order to examine gut bacteria. The results showed that those who followed the walnut diet had an increased count of Lachnospiraceae — a healthy gut bacteria associated with lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels. In the participants who followed the other two diets, researchers found no significant changes in gut health or risk factors for heart health.

Researcher Kristina Petersen explained, “The walnut diet enriched a number of gut bacteria that have been associated with health benefits in the past. One of those is Roseburia, which has been associated with the protection of the gut lining. We also saw enrichment in Eubacteria eligens and Butyricicoccus.”

Penny Kris-Etherton, who was also involved in the study, added, “The findings add to what we know about the health benefits of walnuts, this time moving toward their effects on gut health. The study gives us clues that nuts may change gut health, and now we’re interested in expanding that and looking into how it may affect blood sugar levels.”

Read more great articles at mercola.com

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