Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Whole walnuts and their extracted oil improve cardiovascular disease risk

Date:
May 8, 2013
Source:
Penn State
Summary:
Consumption of whole walnuts or their extracted oil can reduce cardiovascular risk through a mechanism other than simply lowering cholesterol, according to researchers.

Walnuts. Consumption of whole walnuts or their extracted oil can reduce cardiovascular risk through a mechanism other than simply lowering cholesterol, according to new research.
Credit: California Walnut Board

Consumption of whole walnuts or their extracted oil can reduce cardiovascular risk through a mechanism other than simply lowering cholesterol, according to a team of Penn State, Tufts University and University of Pennsylvania researchers.

Related Articles


"We already know that eating walnuts in a heart-healthy diet can lower blood cholesterol levels," said Penny Kris-Etherton, Distinguished Professor of Nutrition, Penn State. "But, until now, we did not know what component of the walnut was providing this benefit. Now we understand additional ways in which whole walnuts and their oil components can improve heart health."

In a randomized-controlled trial, the researchers gave 15 participants with elevated blood cholesterol one of four treatments -- either 85 grams of whole walnuts, 6 grams of skin, 34 grams of defatted nutmeat, or 51 grams of oil. The team evaluated biochemical and physiological responses in the participants before the treatments were administered and again 30 minutes, one hour, two hours, four hours and six hours after administering the treatments. The researchers repeated this process for each of the remaining three treatments.

Results -- which will appear in the June 1 issue of the Journal of Nutrition and are now online -- showed that a one-time consumption of the oil component in walnuts favorably affected vascular health. In addition, consumption of whole walnuts helped HDL -- good cholesterol -- perform more effectively in transporting and removing excess cholesterol from the body.

"Our study showed that the oil found in walnuts can maintain blood vessel function after a meal, which is very important given that blood vessel integrity is often compromised in individuals with cardiovascular disease," said Claire Berryman, graduate student in nutritional sciences, Penn State. "The walnut oil was particularly good at preserving the function of endothelial cells, which play an important role in cardiovascular health."

According to the researchers, walnuts contain alpha-linolenic acid, gamma-tocopherol and phytosterols, which may explain the positive effects of the walnut oil treatment.

"Implications of this finding could mean improved dietary strategies to fight heart disease," said Berryman. "The science around HDL functionality is very new, so to see improvements in this outcome with the consumption of whole walnuts is promising and worth investigating further."

Further studies are needed to determine the mechanisms that account for cardiovascular disease risk reduction with walnut consumption, according to Kris-Etherton.

"Our study indicates that simple dietary changes, such as incorporating walnuts and/or their oil in a heart healthy diet, may reduce the risk of heart disease," she said.

Other authors on the paper include Jessica Grieger and Sheila West of Penn State, Oliver Chen and Jeffrey Blumberg of Tufts University, and George Rothblat and Sandhya Sankaranarayanan of the University of Pennsylvania.

The California Walnut Board funded this research.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Penn State. The original article was written by Sara LaJeunesse. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Penn State. "Whole walnuts and their extracted oil improve cardiovascular disease risk." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 8 May 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130508123019.htm>.
Penn State. (2013, May 8). Whole walnuts and their extracted oil improve cardiovascular disease risk. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 2, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130508123019.htm
Penn State. "Whole walnuts and their extracted oil improve cardiovascular disease risk." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130508123019.htm (accessed March 2, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, March 2, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Treadmill Test Can Predict Chance Of Death Within A Decade

Treadmill Test Can Predict Chance Of Death Within A Decade

Newsy (Mar. 2, 2015) Johns Hopkins researchers analyzed 58,000 heart stress tests to come up with a formula that predicts a person&apos;s chances of dying in the next decade. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Going Gluten-Free Could Get You A Tax Break

Going Gluten-Free Could Get You A Tax Break

Newsy (Mar. 2, 2015) If a doctor advises you to remove gluten from your diet, you could get a tax deduction on the amount you spend on gluten-free foods. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
GlaxoSmithKline and Novartis Try Swapping Success

GlaxoSmithKline and Novartis Try Swapping Success

Reuters - Business Video Online (Mar. 2, 2015) GlaxoSmithKline and Novartis have completed a series of asset swaps worth more than $20 billion. As Grace Pascoe reports they say the deal will reshape both drugmakers. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Can West Africa Rebuild After Ebola?

How Can West Africa Rebuild After Ebola?

Reuters - Business Video Online (Mar. 2, 2015) How best to rebuild the three West African countries struggling with Ebola will be discussed in Brussels this week. As Hayley Platt reports Sierra Leone has the toughest job ahead - its once thriving economy has been ravaged by the disease. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins