A study published in the BMJ Nutrition, Prevention & Health journal, was conducted to find the connection between the consumption of nuts and weight change.
And what the researchers found was that eating nuts on a daily basis not only had a number of health benefits but also included weight loss.
This study covered a span of 20 years. Researchers examined 155,000 people, collecting data on their weight, diet and physical activity.
Every four years each participant was required to report their weight and amount of nuts they ate and also every two years they shared their weekly exercise routine.
Researchers found after studying the results that when the adult participants’ consumption of nuts was increased by half a serving a day it lowered their risk of gaining 4.4 pounds or more over a four year period.
It was also found that when participants went from no intake of nuts to a half a serving a day there was a link to keeping off 1.6 pounds in four years and with a 16% reduction in obesity risks.
They also found that participants who consistently increased their nut consumption by half a serving a day were 23 percent more likely to keep from gaining 11 pounds or more within a four year period.
The study was done by researchers from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and the research team suggests that snacking on a handful of nuts instead of junk food is a good way to avoid weight gain that often accompanies us as we age and a somewhat manageable way to curb the onset of obesity.
The researchers concluded that the reason the consumption of nuts helped with weight control is that it takes more energy and effort to chew nuts and that the high fiber content of nuts has a definite part in delaying the emptying of the stomach which makes a person feel full and sated for a longer time.
Another reason nuts help with weight control is that nut fiber also binds better to fats in the gut which means that more calories are used up. The study also showed that there is some evidence that the high unsaturated fat content of nuts can increase resting energy usage which may also help to ward off weight gain.
In any case, snacking on nuts on a regular basis is a healthy alternative to junk food and could help one avoid weight gain or lose it.