Research Roundup: Breakfast, Nut Consumers, Polyphenols

Breakfast is Good for the Heart

Skipping breakfast or consuming low-calorie breakfasts is associated with an increased risk of atherosclerosis, according to researchers in Spain. The usual diet of over 4,000 participants free of cardiovascular or chronic kidney disease were divided into those who skipped breakfast (3%), consumed more than 20 percent of daily calories at breakfast (28%), and those whose breakfast intake was between five and 20 percent of daily calories (69%). Compared to breakfast consumers, those who skipped or ate a low-calorie breakfast were more likely to acquire atherosclerosis and to have heart disease risk factors.

(Journal of the American College of Cardiology, October 2017)

Nut Consumers Have Better Diets

People who eat nuts are more likely to eat more fruits and vegetables, less red meat, and have lower body mass index. Researchers monitored consumption of nuts, fruits and vegetables, and obesity-related foods, such as fruits, vegetables, red or processed meats and added sugars in nearly 400 overweight and obese African-American women over 24 months. Compared with non-nut consumers, nut consumers not only ate more nutritiously, they showed significant weight loss, even after accounting for calorie intake and physical activity.

(CDC, September 2017)

Polyphenols Support Healthy Blood Pressure

A diet high in polyphenolic acids (or polyphenols, compounds in plants such as fruits, vegetables, nuts and beans) may have a positive impact on blood pressure, according to Italian researchers. The trial, known as the MEAL (Mediterranean healthy Eating, Ageing, and Lifestyle) study, measured the dietary polyphenol intake of 2,044 participants. Those with the highest polyphenol intakes had a 32 percent reduced risk of high blood pressure.

(Nutrients, September 2017)

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