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Oct 26, 2013 08:35 AM EDT

Almonds Reduce Hunger and Prevent Weight Gain, Study

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A new Purdue University study has found a solution for the 'between meals hunger pangs', which can help cut the cravings without piling on calories.

The researchers have discovered that munching 1.5oz (equivalent to 43g or around 30 individual nuts) of almonds can reduce hunger, improve Vitamin E levels and 'good' fat intake without increasing weight.

The researchers arrived at the conclusion after conducting experiments on the effects of consuming almonds on weight and appetite.

Around 137 adults with a risk of type 2 diabetes participated in the study. The participants were divided into five groups - a control group completely avoided nuts and seeds, a second group ate 1.5oz of almonds at breakfast, the third group ate the nuts at lunch, fourth group ate them in the morning and the last group had a nut snack in the afternoon.

The groups followed the instruction for almost a month.

The researchers found that participants who ate approximately 250 calories a day in the form of almonds, reported less hunger than people who did not eat them at all. It also prevented them from unnecessary snacking and eating more calories. Plus, these participants did not gain weight as well.

 "This research suggests that almonds may be a good snack option, especially for those concerned about weight," Dr Richard Mattes, professor of nutrition science at Purdue University and the study's lead author told Daily Mail UK. "In this study, participants compensated for the additional calories provided by the almonds so daily energy intake did not rise."

"They also reported reduced hunger levels and desire to eat at subsequent meals, particularly when almonds were consumed as a snack [as opposed to during a meal]."

The finding has been published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Mattes said that the reason why participants felt their stomach full was because almonds have a lot of protein, unsaturated fat composition and fiber. Almonds are good "at controlling appetite when consumed as snacks."

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