The reality TV show “Intervention” ran for 14 seasons and covered every addiction from to crack cocaine and methamphetamines to sex, gambling and video games. But there’s one thing the show didn’t cover: almonds. That’s right, almonds. But now there’s finally been an almond intervention, and the amazing results are in!
Researchers at the University of Florida staged the nutty intervention with a group of 28 parents and their kids. They had some parents add one-and-a-half ounces of the nuts to their daily diet and some kids added half an ounce of nuts or almond butter equivalent. The result? Both the nutty parents’ and kids’ entire nutritional profile, as measured by Healthy Eating Index, skyrocketed. The researchers said that while the parents and children all began the study with a less-than-healthful HEI of about 54, by the end it had climbed into the moderately healthy range, topping 61. (The Healthy Eating Index is based on the USDAs Dietary Guidelines: A score below 50 indicates a poor diet; over 80 is very healthy.)
Almonds (and walnuts) dish up lots of protein. That gives you energy. And when parents and kids snacked on almonds, they reduced the amount of sugary, processed foods they ate! (Walnuts will do that for you, too.) Another hidden benefit: Eating a handful of almonds (or walnuts) 20 to 30 minutes before mealtime helps control your appetite, and that helps you lose weight. So go nuts (just don’t overeat; they deliver about 163-185 calories an ounce).
Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of “The Dr. Oz Show,” and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Wellness Officer and Chair of Wellness Institute at Cleveland Clinic.