Rajaram, S, et al., Effect of Almond-Enriched High-Monounsaturated Fat Diet on Selected Markers of Inflammation: A Randomised, Controlled, Crossover Study. British Journal of Nutrition, 2009. 103(907-912.
Frequent consumption of nuts lowers the risk of CHD. While lowering blood lipids is one of the mechanisms for cardioprotection, the present study sought to determine whether monounsaturated fat-rich almonds also influence other CHD risk factors such as inflammation and haemostasis. This was a randomised, controlled, crossover feeding study with twenty-five healthy adults (eleven men; fourteen women), age 22-53 years. Following a 2 week run-in phase (34 % energy from fat), subjects were assigned in random order to three diets for 4 weeks each: a heart-healthy control diet with no nuts ( < 30 % energy from fat), low-almond diet and high-almond diet (10 % or 20 % isoenergetic replacement of control diet with almonds, respectively). Serum E-selectin was significantly lower on the high-almond diet compared with the control diet. E-selectin decreased as the percentage of energy from almonds increased (P < 0.0001). C-reactive protein (CRP) was lower in both the almond diets compared with the control diet. A clear dose response was not observed for either E-selectin or CRP. There was no effect of diet on IL-6 or fibrinogen. Tissue plasminogen activator antigen was significantly lower on the control and high-almond diets compared with the low-almond diet, although the values were within normal range. In conclusion, consumption of almonds influenced a few but not all of the markers of inflammation and haemostasis. A clear dose response was not observed for any of the markers studied.