Almonds can help regulate cholesterol, reduce heart disease

For patients with high cholesterol, almonds may be able to help, according to new research.

An analysis published in the Journal of Nutritional Science revealed that almonds can reduce unhealthy LDL-cholesterol levels and triglycerides while having no impact on healthy HDL cholesterol levels. The findings suggest that in conjunction with a healthy diet, almonds could help maintain healthy blood lipid levels and reduce the risk of developing heart disease.

The study, led by Kathy Musa-Veloso, PhD, the director of health claims and clinical trials at Intertek Scientific & Regulatory Consultancy, suggested that blood lipid levels were most improved when the dose of almonds was at least 45 grams a day for those with existing elevated blood lipid levels.

"These results strengthen decades of research about how the regular consumption of almonds can favorably impact blood lipid levels and have a positive effect on heart health," Musa-Veloso said. "The consumption of almonds as part of a healthy diet should be encouraged in order to improve blood lipid levels and reduce the risk of heart disease."

The study was funded by the Almond Board of California.