We’ve always been told that nuts would ruin our diets because of their high fat content, but a new study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition and supported by the Almond Board of California, seems to have busted this myth.

According to Dr. Gary Foster of Temple University in Philadelphia, nuts, especially almonds, can be safely incorporated into any weight loss program as long as they are taken in controlled portions. This has been proven by his research where half of 123 generally healthy but slightly obese participants were given a set amount of almonds to add to their list of “can eats” within an 18-month diet, while the other half made do without them.

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After 18 months, results revealed that those who didn’t eat almonds lost slightly more weight than those who did, but those who had almonds had lower cholesterol levels.

What are in these shelled treats that make you healthier? According to the Almond Board of California, these almonds are rich in fiber, calcium, Vinamin E, potassium and magnesium. They also contain “good quality fats” which actually help lower cholesterol, making them good for your heart.

So the next time you visit your local supermarket, try grabbing a few packs of almonds. Just remember that they don’t make you lose weight, but they do give you the satisfaction of knowing that you’re deliciously snacking on something that gets the evil cholesterol out of your system.

(Photo by areta ekarafi via Flickr Creative Commons)

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