Nuts and Cardiovascular Disease Prevention

Curr Atheroscler Rep. 2018 Aug 9;20(10):48. doi: 10.1007/s11883-018-0749-3.


Purpose of review: We review recent epidemiological and clinical studies investigating the consumption of tree nuts and peanuts and cardiovascular disease (CVD) mortality as well as CVD risk factors.

Recent findings: A greater consumption of tree nuts and peanuts is associated with a reduced risk of CVD mortality, as well as lower CVD events. Furthermore, risk factors associated with the development of CVD such as dyslipidemia, impaired vascular function, and hypertension are improved with regular tree nut and peanut consumption through a range of mechanism associated with their nutrient-rich profiles. There is weak inconsistent evidence for an effect of nut consumption on inflammation. There is emerging evidence that consuming tree nuts reduces the incidence of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and promotes diversity of gut microbiota, which in turn may improve CVD outcomes. Evidence for CVD prevention is strong for some varieties of tree nuts, particularly walnuts, and length of supplementation and dose are important factors for consideration with recommendations.

Keywords: Cholesterol; Inflammation; Microbiota; Nuts; cardiovascular diseases; Vascular stiffness.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antioxidants / therapeutic use
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / etiology
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / prevention & control*
  • Diet
  • Dyslipidemias / complications
  • Dyslipidemias / therapy
  • Gastrointestinal Microbiome
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / complications
  • Hypertension / therapy
  • Inflammation / complications
  • Inflammation / therapy
  • Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease / complications
  • Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease / therapy
  • Nuts*
  • Oxidative Stress
  • Risk Factors
  • Risk Reduction Behavior
  • Vascular Stiffness


  • Antioxidants