According to 51,188 women ages 20-45 who participated in the Nurses’ Health Study II, those who did this thing a couple of times a week prevented weight gain, while women who rarely did this (or just did it less) had a greater incidence of weight gain. What’s the “this” we’re talking about? No, it’s not sex (although it probably could be!), the answer is “dietary consumption of nuts” -- and we say, “preferably walnuts!”
Walnuts are particularly powerful. They don’t just help you maintain a healthy weight. For both men and women, walnuts can deliver an additional two-three punch against atherosclerosis and osteoporosis. (Men have traditionally been underdiagnosed for osteoporosis.) And a recent lab study shows that the development of atherosclerosis encourages the loss of bone density. That’s because when arteries get clogged with lousy LDL cholesterol, fewer nutrients get to the bones, which means a loss of bone integrity -- and that leads to osteoporosis.
But a steady diet of walnuts can get right to the heart of the problem. They provide heart-healthy monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids, ALA omega-3 in particular, that can reduce levels of lousy cholesterol. Plus, they’re a good source of copper. (Copper deficiency is associated with low bone mineral density.)
So eat ‘em up salted, unsalted, raw or roasted. They can help you avoid weight gain, protect against heart disease and maintain bone strength, and many people tell us they relieve joint pain. So get nutty with 1.5 ounces of walnuts, and do it more than twice a week.
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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. To live your healthiest, tune into “The Dr. Oz Show” or visit www.sharecare.com.