Skip to main page content
Access keys NCBI Homepage MyNCBI Homepage Main Content Main Navigation
Filters applied. Clear all
. 2014 Jan 8;9(1):e85133.
doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0085133. eCollection 2014.

Tree Nuts Are Inversely Associated With Metabolic Syndrome and Obesity: The Adventist Health study-2

Free PMC article

Tree Nuts Are Inversely Associated With Metabolic Syndrome and Obesity: The Adventist Health study-2

Karen Jaceldo-Siegl et al. PLoS One. .
Free PMC article


Objective: To examine the relationships of nut consumption, metabolic syndrome (MetS), and obesity in the Adventist Health Study-2, a relatively healthy population with a wide range of nut intake.

Research design and methods: Cross-sectional analysis was conducted on clinical, dietary, anthropometric, and demographic data of 803 adults. MetS was defined according to the American Heart Association and the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute diagnostic criteria. We assessed intake of total nuts, tree nuts and peanuts, and also classified subjects into low tree nut/low peanut (LT/LP), low tree/high peanut (LT/HP), high tree nut/high peanut (HT/HP), and high tree/low peanut (HT/LP) consumers. Odds ratios were estimated using multivariable logistic regression.

Results: 32% of subjects had MetS. Compared to LT/LP consumers, obesity was lower in LT/HP (OR = 0.89; 95% CI = 0.53, 1.48), HT/HP (OR = 0.63; 95% CI = 0.40, 0.99) and HT/LP (OR = 0.54; 95% CI = 0.34, 0.88) consumers, p for trend = 0.006. For MetS, odds ratios (95% CI) were 0.77 (0.47, 1.28), 0.65 (0.42, 1.00) and 0.68 (0.43, 1.07), respectively (p for trend = 0.056). Frequency of nut intake (once/week) had significant inverse associations with MetS (3% less for tree nuts and 2% less for total nuts) and obesity (7% less for tree nuts and 3% less for total nuts).

Conclusions: Tree nuts appear to have strong inverse association with obesity, and favorable though weaker association with MetS independent of demographic, lifestyle and dietary factors.

Conflict of interest statement

Competing Interests: Joan Sabaté has served on the scientific advisory board of Paramount Farms. This does not alter the authors' adherence to all PLOS ONE policies on sharing data and materials, as detailed online in the guide for authors.


Figure 1
Figure 1. Prevalence (%) of metabolic syndrome and obesity according to type of nuts consumed.
Metabolic syndrome was defined according to the AHS/NHLBI diagnostic criteria ; obesity: BMI ≥30 kg/m2 . Chi-square test was used to determine differences in prevalence by type of nuts consumed: no fill (low tree nut/low peanut), vertical (low tree nut/high peanut), black fill (high tree nut/high peanut), horizontal (high tree nut/low peanut).

Similar articles

See all similar articles

Cited by 11 articles

See all "Cited by" articles


    1. Gami AS, Witt BJ, Howard DE, Erwin PJ, Gami LA, et al. (2007) Metabolic syndrome and risk of incident cardiovascular events and death: a systematic review and meta-analysis of longitudinal studies. J Am Coll Cardiol 49: 403–414. - PubMed
    1. Schmidt C, Bergstrom GM (2012) The metabolic syndrome predicts cardiovascular events: results of a 13-year follow-up in initially healthy 58-year-old men. Metab Syndr Relat Disord 10: 394–399. - PubMed
    1. Ford ES, Li C, Sattar N (2008) Metabolic syndrome and incident diabetes: current state of the evidence. Diabetes Care 31: 1898–1904. - PMC - PubMed
    1. Grundy SM, Cleeman JI, Daniels SR, Donato KA, Eckel RH, et al. (2006) Diagnosis and management of the metabolic syndrome: an American Heart Association/National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute scientific statement. Curr Opin Cardiol 21: 1–6. - PubMed
    1. Grundy SM (2008) Metabolic syndrome pandemic. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol 28: 629–636. - PubMed

Publication types

MeSH terms