“The addition of pecans to the diet not only produced a greater and more consistent reduction in total cholesterol and LDL compared to many other lifestyle interventions, but may also be a more sustainable approach for long-term health,” Cooper said.
For their study, the researchers placed 52 people ages 30-75 into one of three groups: those who ate about 470 calories of pecans in addition to their regular meals; those who substituted those pecans for something else in their meals; and those who did not consume pecans.
“Whether people added them or substituted other foods in the diet for them, we still saw improvements and pretty similar responses in total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol in particular,” said Cooper, who also serves as director of the UGA Obesity Initiative.
Pecans are high in healthy fatty acids and fiber, both of which have been linked to lower cholesterol.
It’s only fitting a pecan study was done at UGA. Georgia is historically the top pecan producing state in the country, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, yielding about 33% of the nation’s total production.
You can read the full study in the Journal of Nutrition.
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