Be very thankful that almonds may be added to or found in so many foods — chocolate bars, salads, trail mix, ice cream, baked treats, granola bars, etc. That’s because almonds have the superb ability to lower LDL levels. LDL stands for “low-density lipoprotein”, the bad type of cholesterol that causes high blood pressure, hardening and clogging up of the arteries, and others. Incorporating almonds into your daily diet can be very beneficial in the attainment of a healthy heart.
First things first: almonds are not nuts.
They are actually the kernels inside the seeds of a tree having the same name. Almonds may be eaten raw or toasted. They may also be added into an assortment of dishes, desserts and baked items. Other than whole, almonds these days may be purchased sliced and in the form of flour.
What makes almonds highly effective in reducing your LDL levels is the combination of vitamin E and polyunsaturated fat they come packed with.
Vitamin E is an antioxidant that helps prevent the oxidation of cholesterol in the food you eat, thus keeping them from sticking on the inner walls of the arteries and causing a reduction in the flow of blood.
Just because there’s “fat” in “polyunsaturated fat” doesn’t mean this nutrient in almonds should cause you to be alarmed.
The truth it it’s the good kind of fat. It helps reduce your LDL levels, thus considerably minimizing your risk of suffering from high blood pressure, atherosclerosis (hardening and narrowing of the arteries) and heart disease. What’s so nice about almonds is they can help lower your LDL levels without having any effect on your HDL levels. HDL stands for “high-density lipoprotein”, the good kind of cholesterol that keeps the levels of bad cholesterol in your blood in check.
According to a study conducted, participants who consumed almonds on a regular basis were able to reduce their LDL levels by 10 percent.
Even without changing any part of their diet, the inclusion of almonds into their daily diet was enough to yield this really impressive result. Just imagine what wonders almonds could make if you also went for a heart-friendly diet!
In the said study, the quantity of almonds given to the participants amounted to 73 grams — that’s about a half a cup only.
You might be tempted to double or triple that amount just to reduce your LDL levels further. However, you should also consider the fact that almonds are packed with calories too. Half a cup of almonds already contain as much as 400 calories.
When planning on taking advantage of almonds to boost your heart health, moderation is the key. It is also definitely a good idea to supplement your almond-snacking with proper diet, regular exercise and a healthy lifestyle.