Keeping our focus on nutrition this month, we decided to take a look at some of our most popular recommendations. One that stuck out? Increasing your intake of nuts – it’s right up there with oatmeal. Based on the nutrition questionnaire each of our customers must complete, nuts may be your ticket to improvements in many biomarkers.
As you may know, we link each of our recommendations to the scientific literature that supports it. But, we’ve gone one step farther… we can now see how our recommendations are actually affecting InsideTracker users! Here, we compare the typical intakes of nuts for our users with their biomarker levels. The results speak for themselves – it’s time to go nuts!
Users that reported consuming nuts one or more times per day had significantly higher levels of HDL cholesterol (the good kind!) than those that reported consuming nuts once per week or less (p<0.001 – for the non-science crowd, if the p value is less than .05, the value is statistically significant). Nuts are high in polyunsaturated fats, good fats that are shown to improve cholesterol levels, particularly HDL. 1
Users that reported consuming nuts at least once per day have significantly lower triglycerides than users that reported consuming nuts one time per week or less (p<0.001). Similar to HDL, triglyceride levels respond positively to polyunsaturated fat intake. 2
Users that reported consuming at least 2 servings of nuts per day had significantly lower levels of hsCRP than users that reported eating nuts less than once per week (p<0.05). Nuts are high in magnesium, which has been associated with lower levels of inflammatory markers, including hsCRP. 4
Users that reported consuming nuts at least once per day had significantly lower levels of cortisol than users that reported eating nuts less than once per week (p<0.001). High intake of monounsaturated fats is associated with lower levels of cortisol. 3
Higher Testosterone in Men
Males that reported consuming nuts at least once per day had significantly higher levels of testosterone than males that reported consuming nuts only once per week or less (p<0.05). Nuts are high in magnesium which is associated with higher testosterone levels. Therefore, we recommend at least one serving per day for men with below optimal testosterone levels. 5
From our perspective, and as the data makes clear, the proof really is in pudding. We're seeing InsideTracker users following our recommendations and optimizing their biomarkers and performance. So reach into your nutrition and training toolbox, and grab some nuts!
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-  Afshin, Ashkan, et al. "Consumption of nuts and legumes and risk of incident ischemic heart disease, stroke, and diabetes: a systematic review and meta-analysis." The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 100.1 (2014): 278-288.
-  Clarke, Robert, et al. "Dietary lipids and blood cholesterol: quantitative meta-analysis of metabolic ward studies." BMJ 314.7074 (1997): 112.
-  García‐Prieto, M. D., et al. "Cortisol secretary pattern and glucocorticoid feedback sensitivity in women from a Mediterranean area: relationship with anthropometric characteristics, dietary intake and plasma fatty acid profile." Clinical endocrinology 66.2 (2007): 185-191.
-  Yu, Zhi, et al. "Associations between nut consumption and inflammatory biomarkers." The American journal of clinical nutrition 104.3 (2016): 722-728.
-  Maggio, M., et al. "Magnesium and anabolic hormones in older men." International journal of andrology 34.6pt2 (2011).