Nuts improve diet quality compared to other energy-dense snacks while maintaining body weight

J Nutr Metab. 2011;2011:357350. doi: 10.1155/2011/357350. Epub 2011 Aug 10.


Previous studies have reported that regular nut consumption reduces cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk and does not promote weight gain despite the fact that nuts are energy-dense. However, no studies have investigated the body composition of those regularly consuming nuts compared to similar intakes of other snacks of equal energy density. This parallel study (n = 118) examined the effects of providing daily portions (~1100 kJ/d) of hazelnuts, chocolate, or potato crisps compared to a control group receiving no snacks for twelve weeks. Effects on body weight and composition, blood lipids and lipoproteins, resting metabolic rate (RMR), appetite indices, and dietary quality were compared. At week 12, there was no significant difference in any of the outcome measurements between the groups except for dietary quality, which improved significantly in the nut group. Nuts can be incorporated into the diet without adversely affecting body weight and can improve diet quality.