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Consumption of Nuts at Midlife and Healthy Aging in Women.

Freitas-Simoes, T.M., M. Wagner, C. Samieri, A. Sala-Vila, F. Grodstein, 2020. Consumption of Nuts at Midlife and Healthy Aging in Women. J Aging Res. https://doi.org/10.1155/2020/5651737.

Background: Nut consumption may reduce age-related diseases and lead to better health and well-being in aging. Many conditions of aging develop over decades, and thus earlier lifestyle factors may particularly influence later health. Methods: In 1998 and 2002, we administered food frequency questionnaires to assess nut consumption (peanuts, walnuts, and other nuts and peanut butter) in women in the Nurses’ Health Study in their 50 s/early 60 s. In 2012, those who survived beyond 65 years with no chronic diseases, no reported memory impairment, no physical disabilities, and intact mental health were considered “healthy agers.” We used multivariable logistic regression to estimate odds ratios for healthy versus usual aging, controlled for sociodemographic, behavioral, dietary, and other potential confounding factors. Results: Of 33,931 participants at midlife, 16% became “healthy agers.” After age adjustment, we observed a significant association between total nut consumption at midlife and higher odds of healthy aging, with strongest associations observed excluding peanut butter (odds ratio (OR) = 1.46, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.32–1.62, ≥3 servings/week versus none). Findings were attenuated after further control for covariates, including overall diet quality (OR = 1.14, 95% CI 1.02–1.28, P trend = 0.05). For nut types, we found statistically significantly higher odds of healthy aging across peanuts, walnuts, and other nuts after age adjustment. After full control for confounders, only walnut consumption remained associated with healthy aging (P trend = 0.0001); for example, the OR was 1.20 (95% CI 1.00–1.44) for ≥2 servings/week versus none. Conclusions: Women consuming nuts at midlife have a greater likelihood of overall health and well-being at older ages. Nut consumption may represent a simple intervention to explore and promote healthy aging.

Whole almond consumption is associated with better diet quality and cardiovascular disease risk factors in the UK adult population: National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNS) 2008–2017.

Dikariyanto, V., S.E. Berry, L. Francis, L. Smith, W.L. Hall, 2020. Whole almond consumption is associated with better diet quality and cardiovascular disease risk factors in the UK adult population: National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNS) 2008–2017. Eur J Nutr. 60(2):643-654.

Purpose: This work aimed to estimate whole almond consumption in a nationally representative UK survey population and examine associations with diet quality and cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk. Methods: Four-day food record data from the National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNS) 2008–2017 (n = 6802, age≥19 year) were analyzed to investigate associations between whole almond consumption and diet quality, measured by the modified Mediterranean Diet Score (MDS) and modified Healthy Diet Score (HDS), and CVD risk markers, using survey-adjusted multivariable linear regression. Results: Whole almond consumption was reported in 7.6% of the population. Median intake in whole almond consumers was 5.0 g/day (IQR 9.3). Consumers had higher diet quality scores relative to non-consumers; higher intakes of protein, total fat, monounsaturated, n-3 and n-6 polyunsaturated fats, fiber, folate, vitamin C, vitamin E, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, and iron; and lower intakes of trans-fatty acids, total carbohydrate, sugar, and sodium. BMI and WC were lower in whole almond consumers compared to non-consumers: 25.5 kg/m2 (95% CI 24.9, 26.2) vs 26.3 kg/m2 (25.9, 26.7), and 88.0 cm (86.2, 89.8) vs 90.1 cm (89.1, 91.2), respectively. However, there were no dose-related fully adjusted significant associations between increasing almond intake (g per 1000 kcal energy intake) and lower CVD risk markers. Conclusions: Almond intake is low in the UK population, but consumption was associated with better dietary quality and lower CVD risk factors. Habitual consumption of whole almonds should be encouraged as part of a healthy diet.

Effect of chronic consumption of nuts on oxidative stress: a systematic review of clinical trials.

Silveira, B.K.S., A. da Silva, H.H.M. Hermsdorff, J. Bressan, 2020. Effect of chronic consumption of nuts on oxidative stress: a systematic review of clinical trials. Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 1-12. doi: 10.1080/10408398.2020.1828262.

Nuts consumption has been associated with a protective effect against cardiovascular diseases and oxidative stress-related disorders. We aimed to perform a systematic review with clinical trials to assess the impact of chronic nuts consumption on oxidative stress and the possible mechanisms involved. Studies were identified by searching in three electronic databases: PubMed/MEDLINE, Scopus, and LILACS, and selected following PRISMA guidelines. Two authors perform searching and data extraction. A total of 16 articles were included (12 randomized clinical trials and 4 one or two-arm clinical trials). Nut doses were generally high (>30 g/d), except for Brazil nuts (5-13 g/d). The follow-up time ranges between four weeks and six months, and the oxidized low-density lipoprotein (ox-LDL) was the most assessed biomarker. Eight articles reported improvement in oxidative stress biomarkers after nuts supplementation. Pathways regulated by selenium (e.g. glutathione peroxidase activity and nuclear factor-E2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) regulation), monounsaturated fatty acids (e.g. reduction of LDL oxidation), and bioactive compounds (e.g. antioxidant activity) were described as mechanisms involved in these beneficial effects. No studies reported harmful effects of nut consumption, even in high doses. The chronic consumption of nuts seemed to be effective to change some oxidative stress biomarkers, however, this topic remains controversial because the benefits depends on nut type, nut dose, and population characteristics.

Tree nut snack consumption is associated with better diet quality and CVD risk in the UK adult population: National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNS) 2008–2014.

Dikariyanto, V., S.E. Berry, G.K. Pot, L. Francis, L. Smith, W.L. Hall, 2020. Tree nut snack consumption is associated with better diet quality and CVD risk in the UK adult population: National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNS) 2008–2014. Public Health Nutrition. 23(17), 3160–3169.

Objectives: To examine associations of tree nut snack (TNS) consumption with diet quality and cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk in UK adults from National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNS) 2008–2014. Design: Cross-sectional analysis using data from 4-d food diaries, blood samples and physical measurements for CVD risk markers. To estimate diet quality, modified Mediterranean Diet Score (MDS) and modified Healthy Diet Score (HDS) were applied. Associations of TNS consumption with diet quality and markers of CVD risk were investigated using survey-adjusted multivariable linear regression adjusted for sex, age, ethnicity, socio-economic and smoking status, region of residency and total energy and alcohol intake. Setting: UK free-living population. Subjects: 4738 adults (≥19 years). Results: TNS consumers had higher modified MDS and HDS relative to non-consumers. TNS consumers also had lower BMI, WC, SBP and DBP and higher HDL compared to non-consumers, although a dose-related fully adjusted significant association between increasing nut intake (g per 4184 kJ/1000 kcal energy intake) and lower marker of CVD risk was only observed for SBP. TNS consumption was also associated with higher intake of total fat, mono-, n-3 and n-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids, fibre, vitamin A, thiamin, folate, vitamin C, vitamin E, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, selenium and iron; and lower intake of saturated fatty acids, trans fatty acids, total carbohydrate, starch, free sugar, sodium and chloride. Conclusions: TNS consumers report better dietary quality and consumption was associated with lower CVD risk factors. Encouraging replacement of less healthy snacks with TNS should be encouraged as part of general dietary guidelines.

Identifying usual food choice combinations with walnuts: Analysis of a 2005-2015 clinical trial cohort of overweight and obese adults.

Guan, V., E. Neale, L. Tapsell, Y. Probst, 2020. Identifying usual food choice combinations with walnuts: Analysis of a 2005-2015 clinical trial cohort of overweight and obese adults. Front Nutr. 7:149. doi:10.3389/fnut.2020.00149.

Consumption of nuts has been associated with a range of favorable health outcomes. Evidence is now emerging to suggest that walnuts may also play an important role in supporting the consumption of a healthy dietary pattern. However, limited studies have explored how walnuts are eaten at different meal occasions. The aim of this study was to explore the food choices in relation to walnuts at meal occasions as reported by a sample of overweight and obese adult participants of weight loss clinical trials. Baseline usual food intake data were retrospectively pooled from four food-based clinical trials (n=758). A nut-specific food composition database was applied to determine walnut consumption within the food intake data. The Apriori algorithm of association rules was used to identify food choices associated with walnuts at different meal occasions using a nested hierarchical food group classification system. The proportion of participants who were consuming walnuts was 14.5% (n=110). The median walnut intake was 5.14 (IQR 1.10 – 11.45) grams per day. A total of 128 food items containing walnuts were identified for walnut consumers. The proportion of participants who reported consuming unsalted raw walnut was 80.5% (n=103). There were no identified patterns to food choices in relation to walnut at the breakfast, lunch or dinner meal occasions. A total of 24 clusters of food choices related to walnuts were identified at others (meals). By applying a novel food composition database, the present study was able to map the precise combinations of foods associated with walnuts intakes at mealtimes using data mining. This study offers insights into the role of walnuts for the food choices of overweight adults and may support guidance and dietary behavior change strategies.

Metabolic syndrome features and excess weight were inversely associated with nut consumption after 1-year follow-up in the PREDIMED-Plus study.

Julibert, A., M. del Mar Bibiloni, L. Gallardo-Alfaro, M. Abbate, M.Á. Martínez-González, J. Salas-Salvadó, D. Corella, M. Fitó, J.A. Martínez, Á.M. Alonso-Gómez, J. Wärnberg, J. Vioque, D. Romaguera, J. Lopez-Miranda, R. Estruch, F.J. Tinahones, J. Lapetra, L. Serra-Majem, N. Cano-Ibañez, V. Martín-Sánchez, X. Pintó, J.J. Gaforio, P. Matía-Martín, J. Vidal, C. Vázquez, L. Daimiel, E. Ros, C. Sayon-Orea, N. Becerra-Tomás, I.M. Gimenez-Alba, O. Castañer, I. Abete, L. Tojal-Sierra, J. Pérez-López, L. Notario-Barandiaran, A. Colom, A. Garcia-Rios, S. Castro-Barquero, R. Bernal, J.M. Santos-Lozano, C.I. Fernández-Lázaro, P. Hernández-Alonso, C. Saiz, M.D. Zomeño, M.A. Zulet, M.C. Belló-Mora, J. Basterra-Gortari, S. Canudas, A. Goday, J.A. Tur, PREDIMED-PLUS investigators, 2020. Metabolic syndrome features and excess weight were inversely associated with nut consumption after 1-year follow-up in the PREDIMED-Plus study. J Nutr. 00:1–10.

Background: High nut consumption has been previously associated with decreased prevalence of metabolic syndrome (MetS) regardless of race and dietary patterns. Objectives: The aim of this study was to assess whether changes in nut consumption over a 1-y follow-up are associated with changes in features of MetS in a middle-aged and older Spanish population at high cardiovascular disease risk. Methods: This prospective 1-y follow-up cohort study, conducted in the framework of the PREvención con DIeta MEDiterránea (PREDIMED)-Plus randomized trial, included 5800 men and women (55-75 y old) with overweight/obesity [BMI (in kg/m2) ≥27 and <40] and MetS. Nut consumption (almonds, pistachios, walnuts, and other nuts) was assessed using data from a validated FFQ. The primary outcome was the change from baseline to 1 y in features of MetS [waist circumference (WC), glycemia, HDL cholesterol, triglyceride (TG), and systolic and diastolic blood pressure] and excess weight (body weight and BMI) according to tertiles of change in nut consumption. Secondary outcomes included changes in dietary and lifestyle characteristics. A generalized linear model was used to compare 1-y changes in features of MetS, weight, dietary intakes, and lifestyle characteristics across tertiles of change in nut consumption. Results: As nut consumption increased, between each tertile there was a significant decrease in WC, TG, systolic blood pressure, weight, and BMI (P < 0.05), and a significant increase in HDL cholesterol (only in women, P = 0.044). The interaction effect between time and group was significant for total energy intake (P < 0.001), adherence to the Mediterranean diet (MedDiet) (P < 0.001), and nut consumption (P < 0.001). Across tertiles of increasing nut consumption there was a significant increase in extra virgin olive oil intake and adherence to the MedDiet; change in energy intake, on the other hand, was inversely related to consumption of nuts. Conclusions: Features of MetS and excess weight were inversely associated with nut consumption after a 1-y follow-up in the PREDIMED-Plus study cohort. This trial was registered at isrctn.com as ISRCTN89898870.

Barriers and facilitators to nut consumption: A narrative review.

Neale, E.P., G. Tran, R.C. Brown, 2020. Barriers and facilitators to nut consumption: A narrative review. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health. 17, 9127; doi:10.3390/ijerph17239127

Habitual nut intake is associated with a range of health benefits; however, population consumption data suggests that most individuals do not meet current recommendations for nut intake. The literature has highlighted a range of barriers and facilitators to nut consumption, which should be considered when designing strategies to promote nut intake. Common barriers include confusion regarding the effects of nut consumption on body weight, perceptions that nuts are high in fat, or too expensive, and challenges due to dentition issues or nut allergies. Conversely, demographic characteristics such as higher education and income level, and a healthier lifestyle overall, are associated with higher nut intakes. Health professionals appear to play an important role in promoting nut intake; however, research suggests that knowledge of the benefits of nut consumption could be improved in many health professions. Future strategies to increase nut intake to meet public health recommendations must clarify misconceptions of the specific benefits of nut consumption, specifically targeting sectors of the population known to have lower nut consumption, and educate health professionals to promote nut intake. In addition, given the relatively small body of evidence exploring barriers and facilitators to nut consumption, further research exploring these factors is justified.

The consumption of nuts is associated with better dietary and lifestyle patterns in polish adults: Results of WOBASZ and WOBASZ II Surveys.

Witkowska, A.M., A. Wa´skiewicz, M.E. Zujko, D. Szczes´niewska, W. S´migielski, U. Stepaniak, A. Paja, W. Drygas, 2019. The consumption of nuts is associated with better dietary and lifestyle patterns in polish adults: Results of WOBASZ and WOBASZ II Surveys. Nutrients. 11, 1410; doi:10.3390/nu11061410.

In recent years, the concept of the health benefits of synergistic dietary patterns as opposed to individual foods or food constituents has been developed. The aim of this study was to determine whether nut consumption is associated with healthier nutrition and lifestyle. The research was based on complete data obtained during two Polish National Multi-Centre Health Examination Surveys—WOBASZ (2003–2005) and WOBASZ II (2013–2014). Of the 12,946 participants who completed dietary assessments, 299 subjects reported consuming any quantity of whole nuts. A control group of 1184 non-nut consumers from both surveys was randomly selected for the study, with age, gender, study (WOBASZ, WOBASZ II), educational level, and season-related interactions taken into account. In this study, nut consumption was associated with favorable food and lifestyle choices, excluding smoking. Better dietary quality consisted of having a higher Healthy Diet Indicator score, an increased intake of polyphenols and antioxidants, lower intake of red meat, but higher of poultry and fruit, more frequent consumption of antiatherogenic food products, and less frequent consumption of processed meats. There was also greater interest in special diets, such as weight-loss diet. In addition, nut eaters were more physically active in their leisure time. While limited by 24-h recall of nut intake and possible misclassification of nut/non-nut consumer status, this research supports the synergistic health-promoting attitudes of those who were classified as nut consumers.

Trends in dietary carbohydrate, protein, and fat intake and diet quality among US adults, 1999-2016.

Shan, Z., C.D. Rehm, G. Rogers, M. Ruan, D.D.Wang, F.B. Hu, D. Mozaffarian, F.F. Zhang, S.N. Bhupathiraju, 2019. Trends in dietary carbohydrate, protein, and fat intake and diet quality among US adults, 1999-2016. JAMA. 322(12):1178-1187.

IMPORTANCE: Changes in the economy, nutrition policies, and food processing methods can affect dietary macronutrient intake and diet quality. It is essential to evaluate trends in dietary intake, food sources, and diet quality to inform policy makers. OBJECTIVE: To investigate trends in dietary macronutrient intake, food sources, and diet quality among US adults. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: Serial cross-sectional analysis of the US nationally representative 24-hour dietary recall data from 9 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey cycles (1999-2016) among adults aged 20 years or older. EXPOSURE: Survey cycle. MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES: Dietary intake of macronutrients and their subtypes, food sources, and the Healthy Eating Index 2015 (range, 0-100; higher scores indicate better diet quality; a minimal clinically important difference has not been defined). RESULTS: There were 43,996 respondents (weighted mean age, 46.9 years; 51.9% women). From 1999 to 2016, the estimated energy from total carbohydrates declined from 52.5% to 50.5% (difference, −2.02%; 95% CI, −2.41% to −1.63%), whereas that of total protein and total fat increased from 15.5%to 16.4% (difference, 0.82%; 95% CI, 0.67%-0.97%) and from 32.0%to 33.2%(difference, 1.20%; 95% CI, 0.84%-1.55%), respectively (all P < .001 for trend). Estimated energy from low-quality carbohydrates decreased by 3.25% (95% CI, 2.74%-3.75%; P < .001 for trend) from 45.1%to 41.8%. Increases were observed in estimated energy from high-quality carbohydrates (by 1.23% [95% CI, 0.84%-1.61%] from 7.42% to 8.65%), plant protein (by 0.38% [95%CI, 0.28%-0.49%] from 5.38%to 5.76%), saturated fatty acids (by 0.36% [95% CI, 0.20%-0.51%] from 11.5% to 11.9%), and polyunsaturated fatty acids (by 0.65% [95% CI, 0.56%-0.74%] from 7.58%to 8.23%) (all P < .001 for trend). The estimated overall Healthy Eating Index 2015 increased from 55.7 to 57.7 (difference, 2.01; 95% CI, 0.86-3.16; P < .001 for trend). Trends in high- and low-quality carbohydrates primarily reflected higher estimated energy from whole grains (0.65%) and reduced estimated energy from added sugars (−2.00%), respectively. Trends in plant protein were predominantly due to higher estimated intake of whole grains (0.12%) and nuts (0.09%). CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: From 1999 to 2016, US adults experienced a significant decrease in percentage of energy intake from low-quality carbohydrates and significant increases in percentage of energy intake from high-quality carbohydrates, plant protein, and polyunsaturated fat. Despite improvements in macronutrient composition and diet quality, continued high intake of low-quality carbohydrates and saturated fat remained.

Health benefits of nut consumption in middle‐aged and elderly population.

Rusu, M.E., A. Mocan, I.C.F.R. Ferreira, D.-S. Popa, 2019. Health benefits of nut consumption in middle‐aged and elderly population. Antioxidants. 8, 302; doi:10.3390/antiox8080302.

Aging is considered the major risk factor for most chronic disorders. Oxidative stress and chronic inflammation are two major contributors for cellular senescence, downregulation of stress response pathways with a decrease of protective cellular activity and accumulation of cellular damage, leading in time to age‐related diseases. This review investigated the most recent clinical trials and cohort studies published in the last ten years, which presented the influence of tree nut and peanut antioxidant diets in preventing or delaying age‐related diseases in middle‐aged and elderly subjects (≥55 years old). Tree nut and peanut ingestion has the possibility to influence blood lipid count, biochemical and anthropometric parameters, endothelial function and inflammatory biomarkers, thereby positively affecting cardiometabolic morbidity and mortality, cancers, and cognitive disorders, mainly through the nuts’ healthy lipid profile and antioxidant and anti-inflammatory mechanisms of actions. Clinical evidence and scientific findings demonstrate the importance of diets characterized by a high intake of nuts and emphasize their potential in preventing age‐related diseases, validating the addition of tree nuts and peanuts in the diet of older adults. Therefore, increased consumption of bioactive antioxidant compounds from nuts clearly impacts many risk factors related to aging and can extend health span and lifespan.