BENGALURU : There’s a reason almonds are a common food item that you are most likely to find in any diet/health plan across the world. The king of nuts, with its unique nutritional composition, is a great addition to your daily diet if you are coping with type-2 diabetes.
■ Almonds help manage blood sugar levels: A daily serving of almonds (30 grams/23 almonds) may improve both short-term and long-term markers of blood sugar control in those with uncomplicated type-2 diabetes. It is also believed that when almonds are consumed along with a meal, monounsaturated fatty acids in almonds help slow down the release of glucose into the bloodstream thus, preventing sudden spikes in blood sugar levels 1.
■ Almonds may help in lowering total and LDL cholesterol when included in the diet: In addition to significantly improving LDL cholesterol, snacking on almonds also reduced central adiposity (belly fat) and waist circumference which could be an indicator of health risk linked with excess fat around the waist.
■ Almonds are known to reduce health risks linked to heart complications: Diabetics are known to have a higher risk of developing heart diseases. The healthy fats and vitamin E in almonds play a productive role in preventing heart complications. A recent research by Harvard University, funded by the US National Institutes of Health, shows that eating tree nuts, such as almonds, may help in minimising the risk of cardiovascular disease for adults with type-2 diabetes.
People who ate at least five servings of nuts per week had a 17% lower risk of total cardiovascular disease incidence compared to those who ate one or less weekly servings. They also had a 20% lower risk of coronary heart disease, a 34% lower risk of cardiovascular disease death and a 31% reduced risk of death from all causes.
■ Nutrient rich almonds improve metabolism: The Harvard study also highlighted that the beneficial effects of almonds can be at least partially explained by their unique nutritional composition, including unsaturated fatty acids, fibre, vitamins (such as vitamin E and folate), minerals (such as calcium, potassium, and magnesium), and phytochemicals 5 (such as flavonoids and phytosterols). Overall, this helps in speeding metabolism in people with type-2 diabetes which helps in burning calories faster.
— Ritika Samaddar, Regional Head - Dietetics, Max Healthcare, New Delhi