If you're nuts about nuts, you're going to love this news: adding a handful of nuts to your daily diet for a year could help undo the risk factors associated with heart disease. In a recent Spanish study, researchers discovered that those who ate a healthy diet full of fruits, veggies, and fish and included three whole walnuts, seven or eight whole hazelnuts, and seven or eight whole almonds a day actually reduced their belly fat and blood pressure levels.
Since nuts are also chock full of unsaturated fat (healthy fat), the study suggests that the diet can lower the incidence of high LDL (bad) cholesterol. Nuts also contain anti-inflammatory properties and antioxidants such as vitamin E.
So enjoy a handful of mixed nuts for a snack in place of crackers or chips, or sprinkle them on your yogurt instead of granola. Besides helping your heart, cashews, almonds, walnuts, peanuts, and other nuts contain protein and fiber, so they'll keep you satisfied longer, helping you eat less throughout the day.