Cashew is not an enemy after all

Cashew is not an enemy after all

Cashew is not an enemy after all

A new study published in the Journal of Nutrition by Madras Diabetes Research Foundation (MDRF) shows that regular consumption of cashew nut may actually be beneficial for one's health, including for those suffering from type-2 diabetes.

A clinical trial showed that there was a significant decrease in the systolic blood pressure and a significant increase in the good cholesterol or the HDL cholesterol levels in this group.

MDRF had organised a 12-week intervention trial, where 30 gm of raw cashew nuts were given daily to the experimental group. The control group was advised to continue their usual diet. Both groups were well matched at baseline. But
after 12 weeks, there was a significant decrease in the systolic blood pressure
in the group that consumed cashew
nuts.

However, it must be pointed out that the study was done using raw cashew nuts. The beneficial effects of cashew may be mitigated, if the cashew nut is salted or roasted in unhealthy oils or ghee. Regular consumption of cashew nuts can also help in improving the satiety. This will lead to a reduction of food intake especially carbohydrate intake in the subsequent meal.

Cashew nuts are generally not recommended by nutritionists and doctors. The lesser known fact is that cashew nuts contain healthy fats such as monounsaturated fatty acids.

Benefits for people with type 2 diabetes:

* Significant decrease in systolic blood pressure.

* Significant increase in HDL or good cholesterol.

* No deleterious effects on body weight, glucose or bad cholesterol.

* Significant increase in dietary monounsaturated fatty acids intake.

(The author is consultant & chairman, Dr Mohan's Diabetes Specialities Clinic)

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