New Reasons to Eat Nuts

A new study published in the journal Diabetes Care has demonstrated yet another benefit of an old standby snack – nuts. The study found that replacing a high carbohydrate snack with two ounces of nuts a day helped with glycemic and lipid control for people with type 2 diabetes.

A new study published in the journal Diabetes Care has demonstrated yet another benefit of an old standby snack – nuts. The study found that replacing a high carbohydrate snack with two ounces of nuts a day helped with glycemic and lipid control for people with type 2 diabetes.

Further, the experts found that consuming two ounces of nuts a day would not increase overall weight, despite the high caloric value of nuts, and actually helped to reduce weight in the long run. This isn’t the first time that nuts have taken the spotlight when it comes to health. In addition to the findings demonstrated in this study, nuts have also been shown to help reduce overall heart attack risk as well.


While the study sheds light on a great way to manage type 2 diabetes, practically anyone can benefit from this healthy snack. Which nut is best? The participants in the study received raw almonds, pistachios, walnuts, pecans, hazelnuts, peanuts, cashews and macadamias; any of those nuts would work well for weight management and glycemic control. The nuts you want to avoid would be anything that is honey roasted, candied or ... from a more obvious perspective, dipped in chocolate. If you truly want to forgo all processing, then stick with nuts in their raw, unsalted state.

Also avoid getting too nutty and surpassing the recommended 2 ounce a day serving size by portioning out your snacks. For example, if you buy a huge canister of nuts from the store, take the time to make up 1 ounce baggies so that you can enjoy an appropriate amount without going overboard. Never eat right from the jar or can, and never assume that “more is better” when it comes to even the healthiest (yet high calorie) snacks!

Q: I end up overeating because it makes me feel better and I never really get full. I'd like to lose weight but this makes it hard. Any suggestions?

A: Being persistently hungry can cause big trouble. So can overeating for comfort/pleasure. These two behaviors, say researchers from Baylor University's Children's Nutrition Research Center, are controlled deep within your brain by serotonin-producing neurons, but operate separately from each other — one in the hypothalamus, the other in the midbrain. They both can, however, end up fueling poor nutritional choices and obesity.

Eating for Hunger

When hunger is your motive for eating, the question is: "Does your body know when you've had enough?" Well, if you are overweight, obese or have diabetes you may develop leptin resistance and your "I am full" hormone, leptin, can't do its job. The hormone's signal to your hypothalamus is dampened, and you keep eating.

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