Adding nuts to weight loss diets could help achieve goal early: Study

New Delhi: Adding nuts to a calorie-controlled weight loss diet does not hinder weight reduction but may have the opposite effect, a new study said on Tuesday.

The study conducted by the University of South Australia (UniSA) analysed the findings of seven randomised controlled trials that assessed weight changes and glycaemic control in energy-restrictive (ER) diets.

The researchers found that none of the studies produced an adverse effect to weight loss when nuts were included as part of the diet.

According to UniSA researcher Professor Alison Coates, nuts are a nutrient-rich food that should be included in weight-loss diets.

“People often avoid nuts when trying to lose weight because they think that the energy and fat content in nuts can contribute to weight gain,” said Prof Coates.

Four out of the seven studies analysed by the researchers showed that people who ate 42-84 grams of nuts as part of an ER diet achieved significantly more weight loss than those on ER diets without nuts.

Weight loss from the ‘nut-enriched’ ER diets achieved an extra 1.4-7.4 kg which may be related to the ability of nuts to help curb hunger efficiently.

“If weight gain was a concern discouraging people from eating nuts — rest assured that this is not the case. Nuts do not cause weight gain. Furthermore, they do not adversely affect weight loss, rather they appear to assist it,” said Prof Coates.

According to Dr Sharayah Carter, co-author of the study, “For those who enjoy eating nuts, knowing that they can help meet weight loss goals, while also improving overall health is a huge plus.

“It’s also great for health professionals who can be confident in recommending nuts, in the context of a healthy diet, without concerns of an adverse effect on weight.”

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