It’s no secret that weight gain is at epidemic proportions in our country — and the pandemic didn’t help.
After all, being stuck at home meant less exercise, more time in front of the television, and yes — more snacking for a lot of us.
In fact, one study estimated that while sheltering in place, we have gained an average of 1.5 pounds per month!
Now though, brand new research is offering hope for anyone ready to shed those extra pounds. And it’s revealing a weight-loss snack option you can choose to curb your appetite, drop the weight and keep it off.
Nuts + calorie restriction for the win
The research, published in the journal, Nutrients, followed 95 overweight or obese men and women. Each participant was asked to follow a low-calorie diet plan by reducing their calorie intake to 500 calories below their resting metabolic rate.
This was to allow their body to burn more calories than they ate, so the pounds could fall off. This diet lasted 12 weeks and was then followed by 12 weeks of maintenance.
The participants only did one thing differently…
One group had a snack of pretzels each day. The other group ate a snack of mixed nuts that provided the same number of calories.
And guess what, while both groups experienced significant weight loss, the participants who ate nuts each day were the clear winners.
Not only did they get to shed the extra weight and achieve a significant decrease in their BMI at 12 weeks, but they also had much less trouble sticking to their diets.
In fact, the researchers say that eating nuts worked to improve satiety, making following a low-calorie plan much easier and participants less likely to give up. Yea, willpower!
To top it off, the tree nut group also showed greater weight maintenance compared to the pretzel group after 24 weeks. They even benefited from a lower heart rate!
Snack your way to improved weight loss
“Tree nuts (almonds, Brazil nuts, cashews, hazelnuts, macadamias, pecans, pine nuts, pistachios and walnuts) are a great source of protein, healthy fats and fiber,” explained lead researcher, Zhaoping Li, MD, Ph.D., Professor of Medicine and Chief of the Division of Clinical Nutrition at UCLA.
“This makes them so satiating and may be a major reason why we saw less weight gain in the tree nut group during weight maintenance, and a significantly lower dropout rate compared to the pretzel group.”
So what do the researchers recommend in the light of these findings?
They say to replace just one snack a day with 1.5 ounces of your favorite tree nuts and make that your go-to weight-loss snack. It could be the key to boosting your weight loss, as well as your overall health.
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