Health + Wellness

Can Nuts Keep Your Breast Cancer From Returning?

health benefits of nuts

For long-term breast cancer survivors, nut consumption is associated with improved disease-free survival, according to a study published online Oct. 20 in the International Journal of Cancer. This could be beneficial for Black women who have an 80% five-year survival rate compared to 91% for white women.

Breast cancer survivors who ate more than one-half ounce of nuts per week had five-year survival rates of up to 95%, according to the study. This percentage is higher than those without nuts in their diet. Additionally, 94% of the women who consumed nuts on a regular basis did not experience a recurrence, or return, of their breast cancer within five years of recovery from their initial illness, researchers note.

RELATED: Crunch On These 5 Nuts For Better Diabetes Management

Why are nuts good for your health?

There are many health benefits to including nuts in your diet.”Nuts are rich in several nutrients, including unsaturated fatty acids, protein, fiber, vitamins, minerals and other bioactive constituents, such as phytosterols and phenolic compounds, that have known health benefits,”  Dr. Xiao-Ou Shu, a professor of cancer research at Vanderbilt University in Nashville says.

Many nuts and seeds contain omega-3 fatty acids, which according to researchers are anti-inflammatory, help prevent cancer and protect cell structures and walls.

The benefits of consuming nuts on a regular basis don’t stop with the prevention of breast cancer, however. Nuts can provide a range of health benefits and prevent other forms of cancer.

“Many mechanisms of cancer development, such as excessive oxidative stress and chronic inflammation, are shared across cancers,” Shu adds.”Thus, we speculate that benefits of nut consumption that we observed for breast cancer survivors can be extended to survivors of other cancer, though direct evidence on this is needed.”

Which nuts should you add to your diet?

Here are nine nuts you should add to your diet:

1. Almonds

Almonds are tree nuts that may improve your cholesterol levels. Although evidence is insufficient, studies show that an almond-rich diet can reduce your “bad” cholesterol (LDL), total cholesterol and oxidized LDL cholesterol. This promotes heart health.

Additionally, consuming almonds as part of a low-calorie diet can promote weight loss and lower blood pressure in those who are overweight and obese.

Almonds are also beneficial to people with diabetes as they lower the rise in blood sugar that typically occurs after a meal by as much as 30%. Almonds also reduce inflammation in people who have type 2 diabetes.

Almonds also support the growth of

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