Walnuts and walnut oil have other heart benefits as well as lowering cholesterol, a recent study suggests.
Walnuts can help with lowering cholesterol
Walnuts are already known for lowering cholesterol but new research shows they increase the functionality of blood vessels as well.
The California Walnut Board has conducted a study that assessed 15 volunteers on the consumption of walnuts and walnut oil. The volunteers were overweight and obese adults who had a moderate level of healthiness but a higher than average cholesterol level.
It concluded that a one-time consumption of walnut or walnut oil boosted the functionality of blood vessels. It also provided more evidence that walnuts helped remove excess cholesterol from the body more effectively.
The report explained that walnut oil was especially good at preserving the cells that line the walls of blood vessels which play a vital role in cardiovascular health.
Senior author Penny Kris-Etherton said: "We already know that eating walnuts in a heart-healthy diet can lower blood cholesterol levels.
"But, until now, we did not know what component of the walnut was providing this benefit. Now we understand additional ways in which whole walnuts and their oil components can improve heart health.”
High cholesterol can increase the risk of narrowing of the arteries, heart attack and stroke.
It is the latest research that shows the health benefits of walnuts following a report in 2010 that suggested a diet with high levels of walnuts and walnut oil enabled the body to cope with stress more effectively.
Kris-Ehterton said: "Our study indicates that simple dietary changes, such as incorporating walnuts and/or their oil in a heart healthy diet, may reduce the risk of heart disease."
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© ActiveQuote Ltd. 2013