Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Walnuts May Reduce Cancer Risk

Consuming walnuts is a risk free way for preventing and controlling cancer. Walnuts are part of the nut tree family that includes Brazil nuts, cashews, hazelnuts (filberts), macadamia nuts, pecans, pine nuts, and pistachios. There are over 20 varieties of walnuts. The Persian walnut is the kind found in the grocery stores. The walnut itself has a soft texture and lots of good taste due to the high fat content. The U.S. grows about 38% of all walnuts, and about 90% come from California.

Nutritional Value

Walnuts are a good source of protein, dietary fiber, omega 3 fatty acids, vitamin B6, thiamin, folate, and a good amount of minerals.

Approximately 90% of the phenols in walnuts are found in the skin. These include key phenolic acids, tannins, and flavonoids. There is a particular form of vitamin E called gamma-tocopherol, and studies have found this to offer significant protections from heart problems. Walnuts are a good source of this type vitamin E.

Walnuts are known for their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits. Phytonutrients that the walnut provides has shown to be protective against metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular problems, and type 2 diabetes. Some of the phytonutrients found in walnuts are rarely found in other common foods. These are quinone juglone, tannin telllimagradin, and the flavonol morin. The walnut also provides potassium, calcium, and magnesium.

Penn State researchers found that a diet rich in walnuts and walnut oil helped the human body deal better with stress.

In 2006, researchers from the University of Barcelona’s Hospital ClĂ­nico, Spain, found that adding a handful of raw walnuts to meals high in saturated fat was more effective at limiting the ability of the harmful fat from damaging arteries than adding olive oil.

The walnut possesses a wide variety of antioxidant and anti-inflammatory nutrients, which are known to lower chronic oxidative stress, and chronic inflammation.

Prostate Cancer

Prostate cancer affects one in six American men. Diet plays an important role. UC Davis and U.S. Department of Agriculture Western Regional Research Center in Albany, California have found that walnut consumption slows the growth of prostate cancer in mice. It also had beneficial effects on multiple genes that control tumor growth and metabolism. The study was done by Paul Davis, nutritionist in the Department of Nutrition and a researcher with the UC Davis Cancer Center. These findings were announced at the annual national meeting of the American Chemical Society in San Francisco. The study showed that when mice with prostate tumors consume an amount of walnuts that a man can easily eat, the tumor growth is controlled.

Davis fed a diet with whole walnuts to mice that had been genetically programmed to get prostate cancer. After 18 weeks, they found that consuming the human equivalent of 2.4 ounces of walnuts per day resulted in significantly smaller, slower-growing prostate tumors compared to mice consuming the same diet with an equal amount of fat, but not from walnuts.

Breast Cancer

In animal studies walnuts reduce breast cancer risk by half. Mice fed a diet which included walnuts every day had half the risk of developing breast cancer compared to those on a typical diet. Researchers from Marshal University School of Medicine reported this in the journal Nutrition and Cancer.

The mice were given the human equivalent of 2 ounces a day. They followed the mice through their lifespan from conception, weaning and eating the walnuts themselves. They found that the mice that were fed the walnuts developed breast cancer at half the rate, and their tumors were much smaller and they had less of them.

All cancer prevention may take is a hand full of walnuts, and a high quality diet.

This article was published on 20 October 2011 by Blanche Scarf on the following website

About the author Blanche has been a student of natural healing modalities for the last 25 years. She had the privilege of working with some of the greatest minds in Natural Healing including Naturopaths, Scientist, and Energy Healers. Having seen people miraculously heal from all kinds of dis-ease through non-invasive methods, her passion now is to help people become aware of what it takes to be healthy.

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