Walnuts found to have probiotic benefits as well as much higher concentrates of antioxidants then almost any other commonly consumed nut.
The Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry recently published a study showing that walnuts surprisingly have a probiotic effect on the human body’s gut microbiome. Lead researcher Dr Lauri Byerley, Research Associate Professor of Physiology at LSU Health New Orleans School of Medicine, stated that “Walnuts have been called a ‘superfood’ because they are rich in the omega-3 fatty acid, alpha-linoleic acid and fiber, and they contain one of the highest concentrations of antioxidants,” She added, “Now, an additional superfood benefit of walnuts may be their beneficial changes to the gut microbiota.”
The classification of walnuts as a “super food” is further bolstered by an analysis of walnuts presented at the National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society in 2011 that showed that walnuts contain almost twice as many antioxidants as almonds, peanuts, pistachios, pecans, and other common nuts.
“Walnuts have been called a ‘superfood’ because they are rich in the omega-3 fatty acid, alpha-linoleic acid and fiber, and they contain one of the highest concentrations of antioxidants,”
“Gut health is an emerging research area, and researchers are finding that greater bacterial diversity may be associated with better health outcomes,” noted Byerley.
This in part could explain why consuming walnuts has been associated with a myriad of health benefits like the slowing of tumor growth in mice and the lowering risk of heart disease in humans.
Surprisingly, the link between a healthy and diverse gut biodome is not limited to just physical benefits. According to a paper published by the American Psychological Association (APA), gut bacteria produces neurochemicals used for the regulation of mood, memory, learning and retention. The APA also states that 95% of the body’s serotonin is produced by gut bacteria.
So, if you’re the type that like to snack on a healthy trail mix, make sure to add walnuts to whatever medley your consuming. The sheer amount of antioxidants and now, probiotic affects makes it an essential heavy hitter in your arsenal.
Additional information and sources
Lauri O. Byerley, Derrick Samuelson, Eugene Blanchard, Meng Luo, Brittany N. Lorenzen, Shelia Banks, Monica A. Ponder, David A Welsh, Christopher M. Taylor. Changes in the Gut Microbial Communities Following Addition of Walnuts to the Diet. The Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry, 2017; DOI: 10.1016/j.jnutbio.2017.07.001
American Chemical Society. “Walnuts are top nut for heart-healthy antioxidants.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 28 March 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110327191040.htm>.
American Psychological Association, http://www.apa.org/monitor/2012/09/gut-feeling.aspx