More and more scientific evidence is emerging documenting that fat may not be unhealthy after all. The research reviewed evaluated if almond consumption would improve glycemic control and decrease the risk for cardiovascular disease in patients with type 2 diabetes (Li SC, et al. 2011).
The participants consumed either a control diet or a diet where 20% of the daily calories were replaced by almonds, approximately 60 g of almonds. The participants followed these diets for 4 weeks and then had a washout period of 2 weeks before they were switch to the other diet for 4 weeks.
Several changes were seen when the participants ate the almond diet. Here are some of the most important ones.
The body fat percentage was lower, alpha-tocopherol level (vitamin E) increased. Total cholesterol, low density lipoprotein (LDL, the bad cholesterol) and the ratio between LDL and high density lipoprotein (HDL, the good cholesterol) all decreased. Apolipoprotein B levels and apo B/apo A-1 ratio also decreased significantly, these are cardiovascular risk factors. The almond diet also produced lower levels of fasting insulin, fasting glucose and improved insulin resistance.
These are impressive results from only adding some almonds to your diet. The food we eat regularly will have a significant impact on our biochemistry. If just almonds can produce these results, think what kind of results you can get if you incorporate into your meals several type of foods which individually has shown to produce impressive results.
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Li SC, Liu YH, Liu JF, Chang WH, Chen CM, Chen CY. Almond consumption improved glycemic control and lipid profiles in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus. Metabolism. 2011 Apr;60(4):474-9. Epub 2010 May 23.