Eating peanuts with a meal may help protect against cardiovascular diseases, according to an international team of researchers.
In a randomised, controlled, crossover postprandial study, published in the current issue of the Journal of Nutrition , overweight and obese but otherwise healthy men who ate about 3oz of peanuts with a high-fat meal had a moderated post-prandial serum lipid response. Compared to participants who did not eat peanuts with their meal, those who did showed blunting of the triglyceride (TG) response at 120 and 240 minutes after consumption. According to the researchers, there was a 32 per cent reduction in triglyceride levels after the consumption of the peanut meal, compared to the control group. Total, LDL and HDL cholesterol, and glucose and insulin responses, were similar between the groups.
Eating peanuts also seemed to protect arterial function. There was a significant decrease from baseline in endothelial function in controls with high baseline total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol. In contrast, those who ate peanuts maintained endothelial function, irrespective of total- and LDL-cholesterol concentrations.
However, since the study was small, further evidence is needed before a definitive conclusion can be reached on the cardiovascular benefits of peanuts, the researchers said.