Eat Almonds Daily to Reduce Bad Cholesterol

Nutty, brown and full of energy and essential nutrients, almonds have long been one of the ingredients that are know for its power-packed health benefiting properties. Eat them raw, soaked or simply use them in salads, smoothies, shakes and even desserts, these nutty delights enhance the flavour of a dish and render the crunch quotient as well.

An ancient custom is to soak almonds overnight and have them every morning. This is known to shield the body from various ailments.

Adding more to the incredible properties of the nut, researchers from Penn State found that almonds may not only help boost levels of "good" or HDL cholesterol, but also improve the way it removes cholesterol from the body. 
"There's a lot of research out there that shows a diet that includes almonds lowers low-density lipoprotein, or LDL cholesterol, which is a major risk factor for heart disease. But not as much was known about how almonds affect HDL cholesterol, which is considered good cholesterol and helps lower your risk of heart disease," said Penny Kris-Etherton, author of the study.

The researchers wanted to see if almonds could not just increase the levels but also improve the function of HDL cholesterol, which works by gathering cholesterol from tissues, like the arteries, and helping to transport it out of the body.
Depending on how much cholesterol it has collected, HDL cholesterol is categorized into five "subpopulations," which range from the very small prebeta-1 to the larger, more mature alpha-1. The researchers hoped that eating almonds would result in more alpha-1 particles, which would signal improved HDL function.

The study is published in the Journal of Nutrition.


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