A New Wow for Walnuts!

Here’s a riddle: We all have it, we can’t avoid it and the better we are at managing it, they better our health will be. The answer is ... stress. When we think of ways to alleviate stress, we often imagine deep breathing, guided imagery, massage, yoga or even a good run, but we usually don’t think about food, not the healthy kind at least!

Here’s a riddle: We all have it, we can’t avoid it and the better we are at managing it, they better our health will be. The answer is ... stress. When we think of ways to alleviate stress, we often imagine deep breathing, guided imagery, massage, yoga or even a good run, but we usually don’t think about food, not the healthy kind at least! 

A new study in the Journal of The American College of Nutrition showed that alpha linolenic acid (omega-3’s) found in walnuts actually helped to lower both resting blood pressure and general blood pressure responses to stress in a laboratory setting. Most of us have heard Dr. Oz talk about the great benefits that walnuts provide to our hearts but this is a new one! What makes these findings so fascinating is that it showcases how a food can actually have an effect on how we respond to stress and on a much deeper level, it helps us to realize even further that food has healing properties to just about any aspect of our body and our lives. They next time you feel the stress coming on, stay away from the pizza, the doughnut, the candy bar – whatever it is that makes you feel better temporarily. Instead, grab a handful of walnuts. It will help your stress, your heart and your waist!


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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