Nuts are very beneficial to the heart and can lower bad cholesterol. Nuts can easily be added to a healthy disease preventing diet along with arginine and other heart benefitting supplements as a way to prevent cardiovascular disease and protect the heart. Nuts are full of heart protecting nutrients, fiber, healthy monounsaturated fat, antioxidants and minerals.
The Science behind Nuts
There are several scientific studies that prove that nuts can lower cholesterol levels. One study found that women who consumed nuts from the age of 34 to 59 had a lower prevalence of stroke, cancer, and coronary heart disease. This study and other studies have confirmed that by consuming nuts you can maintain or reduce your low blood cholesterol level and reduce your risk of heart disease and other ailments.
Nuts are commonly included in “best whole food” lists because of their many health benefits and for being a filling snack replacement. Almonds for instance have vitamin E, antioxidants, zinc, B2 and magnesium along with healthy monounsaturated fat and protein. The Vitamin E in almonds prevents free radicals from building up in the body, and free radicals are thought to lead to heart disease. The oxidation theory of heart disease states that free radicals oxidize LDL (bad cholesterol) in the body, which causes a cholesterol buildup and then damages the lining of arteries in the body, which further leads to the development of coronary artery disease.
Arginine Supplements for Heart Health
Along with nuts, supplements like arginine can benefit the heart. Arginine can lower blood pressure and in preliminary studies arginine has been shown to potentially lower high cholesterol levels. Mayo Clinic has confirmed that arginine may reduce cholesterol levels, and has many other known benefits for the heart including improved blood flow in patients who have developed coronary artery disease by increasing vasodilation (widening the blood vessels to allow blood to flow more freely), lowering blood pressure, reducing the damaging effect of diabetes, reducing chest pain in patients with chronic chest pain, and more.
Nuts also happen to be a great source of arginine with pine nuts, brazil nuts, walnuts, peanuts, pistachios and almonds all having substantial levels amounts of arginine, which further explains why nuts are beneficial to the heart. Arginine is readily available in supplement form, and most arginine supplements combine arginine with some of the same beneficial vitamins and minerals that are found in nuts.