Posts Tagged Walnuts
November 7, 2014
Did you know that walnuts have been classified as ‘drugs’ by the US Food & Drug Administration, and that some companies have been accused of misbranding them, only to be subject to government“seizure or injunction.” That’s a little harsh, but why?
Diamond Foods, who sells walnuts, was forced to remove certain statements about the healing properties of walnuts from their website because of the FDA’s interference. (You can see the warning letter Diamond Foods received from the FDA, here.) So – while the FDA promotes GMOs, vaccines, pharmaceutical meds that actually hurt people, chemotherapy, and radiation, they have a big problem with walnuts?
It is more likely that Big Pharma is intimidated by these small packages of healing power – that cost only about $3 a pound in some places. Is this why the FDA has censored information on walnuts?
There are over 57 different ways that walnuts promote overall health – but here are just a few concerning heart-health for your perusal:
Walnut Consumption Reduces Heart Disease Risks
Though walnuts are high in fat (they are healthful, beneficial fats) numerous studies have shown that eating nuts reduces the chance of having a heart attack by eliminating blood clots. Walnuts also provide a unique blend of polyunsaturated fatty acids (including omega-3s), along with nutrients like gamma-tocopherol which have demonstrated heart health benefits. The New England Journal of Medicine published the first clinical study showing significant reductions in LDL and improvement in the lipoprotein profile in response to moderate consumption of walnuts.
Additional studies have shown that walnuts improve endothelial function in ways that are independent of cholesterol reduction. Walnuts are so powerful that they help endothelial functioning by 64% when substituted for other fats in a person’s diet. Much of the underlying cause for heart disease is atherosclerosis, a progressive endothelial dysfunction in the body.
Walnuts Contain a Variety of Heart-Healing Nutrients
Aside from endothelial function support, walnuts also contain a host of healing nutrients, including arginine, polyphenols, copper, manganese, and again, omega-3s which support the inner arterial lining and guard against abnormal platelet aggregation in the body.
The US National Library of Medicine database contains more than 35 peer-reviewed published papers supporting a claim that ingesting walnuts improves vascular health and may reduce heart attack risk – and then some.
July 16, 2012
Looking for a natural way to reduce cholesterol? Changing your diet is the single best way to do so. Nuts in particular have repeatedly been shown to be great for reducing cholesterol, according to numerous studies that were reviewed by Loma Linda University. On average, eating a small bag of nuts (67 grams) each day could reduce cholesterol levels by 7.4%, according to the BBC.
Consuming Nuts a Natural Way to Reduce Cholesterol
We aren’t talking about honey roasted peanuts or chocolate covered almonds here, but raw or roasted plain nuts.
Numerous studies have been done on the positive effects of nuts, but this latest review looked at many of them, establishing hard numbers rather than just a casual link.
According to the BBC:
The people involved ate 67g of nuts a day on average, over a period of three to eight weeks.
As well as improving cholesterol levels, it also reduced the amount of triglyceride, a type of blood fat that has been linked to heart disease.
However, the impact was least pronounced among the overweight.
It is not yet clear why nuts have this effect, although one suggestion is that it is down to the plant sterols they contain, which are thought to interfere with cholesterol absorption.
It’s important to note that the study was done by independent researchers but was funded in part by the International Tree Nut Council Nutrition Research and Education Foundation.
Obviously, not all nuts are the same. And even when the sugar and salt is removed, some are more nutritionally potent than others. If consuming nuts as a natural way to reduce cholesterol, try sticking with this selection:
Walnuts are good because they contain plenty of omega 3 fatty acids. They also contain ellagic acid, a powerful antioxidant.
Almonds are loaded with magnesium and calcium. They also contain vitamin E and selenium.
Brazil nuts are also rich in vitamin E, but also have much copper, niacin, fiber and protein.
A handful of nuts when you need a snack is much better than chips and satisfies the same cravings. Throw them in a salad or crushed on top of your main course.
Another natural way to reduce cholesterol in terms of eating is to consume tea, fish, beans, and use olive oil.
by: Elizabeth Renter
July 6, 2012
As if green tea couldn’t get any better, a little-known study from a few years ago showed that it is actually one of many foods to reduce stress. According to the Japanese study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition (2009), drinking five cups of the tea each day could reduce stress by 20%.
Green Tea Among Foods to Reduce Stress
The study looked at 42,093 people, 2,774 of which suffered from psychological stress and said green tea consumption lessened that stress.
As reported by Nutraingredients.com:
“After adjusting their results for potential confounding factors, including age, sex, history of disease, BMI, alcohol consumption, cigarette smoking, diet, and other factors, a significant inverse association between green tea consumption and psychological distress was observed for people who drank at least five cups of green tea per day, compared to those who drank less than one cup per day.
Being an epidemiological study, the authors could not offer any evidence as to what the active constituents behind the apparent benefits could be. Further study is needed to elucidate the bioactives and mechanism of action.”
The active component EGCG (epogallocatechin gallate) in green tea had been previously associated with reduced physical and mental fatigue. This same component is credited with numerous other benefits of green tea.
Over the past several years, use of green tea in the West has skyrocketed, at least in part due to all of the new and promising research of its benefits. While green tea only accounts for 20% of the global tea production, it is said to contain four times the number of beneficial antioxidents as black tea.
From 2000 to 2003, the number of studies on green tea rose from 430 to 1500. There’s no doubt it’s grown exponentially since that time as well.
Getting five cups of green tea may be a challenge for many people, but there are ways to sneak more into your daily consumption. If you enjoy smoothies, for instance, use a cooled green tea instead of water or your regular liquid. Also, having tea after meals can aid in digestion and shut off your appetite.
Other foods to reduce stress include:
- Blueberries – Contain antioxidants and vitamin C, both of which help to lower stress.
- Broccoli – Contains B vitamins, which are known to relieve stress. Broccoli also possesses folic acid, also shown to reduce stress and anxiety.
- Pistachios, Almonds, and Walnuts – The B and E vitamins in almonds are great for relieving stress. They also contain stress-reducing magnesium and zinc. Walnuts and pistachios also help fight stress thanks to B vitamins.
- Dried Apricots – Also among foods to reduce stress, apricots are rich in magnesium, a known stress-fighter and a natural muscle relaxant.
June 28, 2012
By their very website their charter clearly states:
“FDA is responsible for protecting the public health by assuring the safety, efficacy, and security of human and veterinary drugs, biological products, medical devices, our nation’s food supply, cosmetics, and products that emit radiation.”1
Some would surmise that since the FDA – with the above maxim to boot – is a Government Agency, then it must be doing its’ job. However, nothing could be further from the truth.
A few glaring instances of their failure to follow their very adage will be presented below. These examples implicitly dissolve the FDA’s very dictum.
Let’s now take a gander at an excerpt from the unparalleled book 63 Documents The Government Dosn’t Want You To Read by Jesse Ventura & Dick Russell.
Each year, more than 300,000 Americans are hospitalized and 5,000 die after consuming contaminated foods and beverages. Recent high-profile outbreaks of foodborne illness have raised serious questions about FDA’s inspections process and its ability to protect the Nation’s food supply. The Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry requested that the Office of Inspector General [OIG] review the extent to which FDA conducts food facility inspections and identifies violations.
FDA inspects food facilities to ensure food safety and compliance with regulations. During an inspection, FDA inspectors may identify potential violations of the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act as well as other applicable laws and regulations. Based on the outcome of the inspection, FDA assigns a facility one of three classifications: official action indicated [OAI], voluntary action indicated [VAI], or no action indicated [NAI]. In addition, FDA may choose to change a facility’s initial classification to another classification under certain circumstances.
FDA relies on several approaches to determine whether a facility corrected the violations found by inspectors. FDA may review evidence provided by a food facility describing any completed corrective actions. FDA may also reinspect a facility to verify that corrections were made.
On average, FDA inspects less than a quarter of food facilities each year, and the number of facilities inspected has declined over time. Between the fiscal years [FY] 2004 & 2008, FDA inspected annually an average of 24 percent of the food facilities subject to its inspection. Except for a few instances, there are no specific guidelines that govern the frequency with which inspections should occur. Further, the number of food facilities that FDA inspected declined between FY’s 2004 & 2008, even as the number of food facilities increased. In addition, the number of inspections of facilities that have been desginated by FDA as “high risk” has also declined. FDA officials noted the overall decline in FDA inspections was largely due to a decline in staffing levels.
Fifty-six percent of food facilities have gone 5 or more years without an FDA inspection. FDA identified 51,229 food facilities that were subject to inspection and were in business from the start of FY 2004 until the end of FY 2008. Of these, 56 percent were not inspected at all, 14 percent were inspected a single time, and the remaining 30 percent were inspected two or more times. If FDA does not routinely inspect food facilities, it is unable to guarantee that these facilities are complying with applicable laws and regulations.
The number of facilities that received OAI classifications has declined over time. The number of inspected facilities that received OAI classsficiations decreased from 614 in FY 204 to 283 in FY 2008. The percentage of facilities that received OAI classifications also dropped from nearly 4 percent to nearly 2 percent during this 5-year period. In addition, nearly three-quarters of the facilities that received OAI classifications in FY 2008 had a history of violations. Two percent of facilities that received OAI classifications refused to grant FDA officials access to their records.
FDA took regulatory action againts 46 percent of the facilities with initial OAI classifications; for the remainder, FDA either lowered the classification or took no regulatory action. In FY 2007, a total of 446 facilities initialy received OAI classifications. FDA took regulatory action against 46 percent of these facilities. For the remainder, FDA lowered the OAI classification for 29 percent and took no regulatory action for 25 percent.
For 36 percent of the facilities with OAI classifications in FY 2007, FDA took no additional steps to ensure that the violations were corrected. In FY 2007, 280 facilities received OAI classifications that were not lowered by FDA. For 36 percent of these facilities, FDA did not reinspect them within a year of the inspection or review other evidence provided by facilities to ensure that the violations were corrected.2
As can be gathered by the information above, the FDA has had an extremely questionable modus operandi for starters. Their failure to act in many circumstances against violating facilities not only shows their lack of initiative to tackle issues that are imperative, but in addition also showcases the downright negligence to carry out their charter, which poses a great threat to the American public’s health.
The fact that the FDA does not also have the manpower to conduct its much needed operations is no excuse for the poor inspection performance either.
In addition to their lassitude in face of violations, the FDA has also undertaken a censorship operation in attacking walnuts, not only claiming they pose no health benefits, but also stating them to be “unapproved drugs.”3 In fact there is plentiful evidence that points to the contrary.4 Not only have walnuts been shown to help againts osteoporosis, but its also been shown to safeguard againts cancer.5
Now why would the FDA undertake a campaign against a food that helps fight cancer? Was that just one case in which they attacked by ‘coincidence’ a beneficial food, or are there other examples of this? Do they have an agenda we do not know about? Is there additional evidence of this? We will continue to ask questions and dig deeper into the FDA’s hazardous track record.
For now, always remember, healthy skepticism never hurt anybody. And always make sure to do your research irrespective of topic – it can only be beneficial.
Sources for this article:
 63 Document’s The Government Does Not Want You To Read. Jesse Ventura & Dick Russell. Skyhorse Publishing. New York. 2011. p.146, 147, 148.