Nuts Shown to Increase Life Span

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nutsAccording to the result of a 30-year study making headlines in numerous science news publications, people may have even more reason to make nuts a part of their daily diets. Various types of nuts are already known to have health benefits, thanks to the anti-oxidants that they contain. Now, according to a science article in Discovery Science, it looks like they may help people live longer. Not only does eating a few nuts each day make people less likely to die of cancer or heart disease, it makes them less likely to die from anything.

The study was performed at Harvard University, led by Dr. Ying Bao of Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. Researchers tracked 119,000 men and women over a 30-year period, finding that those who ate nuts almost daily proved 20% less likely to die during the period of the study, than those who did not make nuts a part of their diets at all. Those participants who ate nuts to some degree also lowered their death risk, in proportion to the amount they ate.

Additional factors looked at were the risk of dying directly from heart disease, which decreased 29%, while that of dying from cancer decreased 11%, when comparing those who ate nuts daily with those who did not eat them at all. Although it is often debated about which types of nuts have the greatest health benefits, those observed during the study came from all types of tree nuts, regardless of how they were prepared or whether served raw. The icing on the cake? People who eat nuts also stay slimmer.

Dr. Bao explained that although this study proves that a link between eating nuts and longevity exists, it doesn’t explain why. It may be that people choose to eat nuts instead of unhealthier foods, or that they eat them in combination with other foods, such as salads, that make them healthier overall. At the same time, Dr. Bao believes the results of the study are very accurate because of their analyses, which eliminated other possible explanations. Her advice? Eat a mixture of types of nuts to get the maximum benefits.

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