Research Roundup: June 2013

  • Eating walnuts may lower risk of diabetes. Higher walnut consumption is linked with a significantly lower risk of type 2 diabetes in women, according to data in the Nurses’ Health Study and Nurses’ Health Study II. Researchers followed more than 137,000 women, ages 35 – 77 years, for 10 years. In the tenth year of follow-up, women who had consumed walnuts regularly—one to three servings per month, one serving per week, and more than two servings per week—showed a dose-related decrease in their association with diabetes, compared with those who rarely or never ate them. (The Journal of Nutrition, April 1, 2013)
  • Pesticide exposure linked with cancer risk. According to a review of the literature by the American Cancer Society (ACS) on cancer risk related to pesticide application and bystander exposure, there is “substantial evidence” that pesticides used in agriculture, commercial, and in the house and home garden are linked with increased cancer risk. The scientists examined the links between specific pesticides and different cancers such as leukemia and breast cancer in order to draw their conclusions. The ACS called for efforts in the scientific community to avoid future introduction of harmful chemicals into the environment. (Cancer Journal for Clinicians, March/April 2013)
  • Avocados may protect against metabolic syndrome. People who eat avocados every day are more likely to have a healthier diet, smaller waist, and better cholesterol readings, as well as a lower risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease and stroke—all linked to metabolic syndrome. The findings are based on data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. The 347 men and women who ate an average of half an avocado daily had more positive health indicators than those who did not eat them. (Nutrition Journal, January 2013)
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