Thursday, February 25, 2016

Eating almonds, by itself, can improve diet

Remember those nutcrackers?
They were fun.
Oh, joy! An easy way to up your healthy eating score. Just eat 1.5 oz of almonds for adults or an ounce of almonds or an equivalent in almond butter for kids each day may increase your health eating score.

Groan--what's a Healthy Eating Index score, you ask? It's a measure of how one's diet conforms to the USDA Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Below 51--poor diet. 51-80 need for improvement. Above 80--a good diet.

Researchers at the University of Florida picked 28 child-parent pairs in North Central Florida. The parents were told to eat the 1.5 oz of almonds, the kids the 1 oz of nuts or almond butter.

At the end of three weeks, the Healthy Eating Index scores for both increased--the parents to 61.4 plus or minus 1.4 and the childrens' to 61.4 plus or minus 2.2.

Man, we are in the weeds now. Anyhow...

Bottom line--The researchers figured the parents and children replaced salty and processed snacks with the nuts.

Over the last 20 yrs, consumption of nuts and seeds by kids 3-6 yrs old has decreased and consumption of chips and pretzels has increased.

But--they did find kids got sick of crunching down the nuts--and parents had to incorporate the butter or nuts into oatmeal and other foods. My question is--would kids consider these snacks or would they grab a pretzel anyway?

Still, almonds aren't too hard to take...I want some right now.

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