Seeds and nuts have been known for their numerous health benefits, over the years. They contain omega-3 fatty acids that are known to contain mono-unsaturated fatty acids that are healthy for the heart, likewise they contain very little amount of HDL cholesterol that are also critical in supporting a healthy heart. There are so much more health benefits that can be derived from these nature’s wonder foods, but the main issue is consuming the right quantities that will help in achieving these benefits.
According to a new study conducted by the Louisiana State University Health Center, and published in the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry and made available online on the 28th of June, 2017, walnuts in diets can change the composition of bacteria in the gut positively, and these changes suggest that walnuts can be very critical to the proliferation of beneficial bacteria in the intestinal guts of humans.
Walnuts remain some of the best superfoods in human history, aside the fact that they contain lots of omega-3 fatty acids, they also contain essential fiber and alpha-linoleic acids that offer numerous health benefits to the body. In addition, walnuts contain some of the highest concentrations of antioxidants. Now, an additional benefit has been discovered and that is the positive changes some components of walnuts can make to the bacteria in the gut.
The latest research involved the use of rodents. The research team had decided to add substantial walnut into the diets of a group of rodents, while the other group, which is the control group had no walnut added to its daily meals. For several days, the researchers had measured the total number of bacteria in the colon or gut of the rodents in each group involved in the study, and a number of startling discoveries were made.
During the comparation of results, the researchers discovered that there were two main distinct communities of bacteria. In the walnut eating rodent group for instance, the total count and types of bacteria changed, so also are the functional capacities of the bacteria. The researchers also confirmed that there was an increase in Lactobacillus bacteria which is one of the most beneficial bacteria in the human system. In conclusion walnuts increase in diet will sharply increase the diversity of healthy bacteria which in turn can trigger a number of other benefits.
When good bacteria population are increased in your gut, you can enjoy the following benefits;
#1: Strengthened immunity
The presence of probiotics in intestinal guts, will lead to the production of more antioxidants, known to help fight off certain infections. Aside from higher levels of antioxidants, the higher the numbers of probiotics in your gut, the lower the presence of harmful bacteria that may even go extinct. One of the main reasons why we often fall sick is because of lower immunity, which exposes the body to a number of harmful germs. If the inclusion of walnuts in your diet can raise the levels of probiotics in your guts, then you should consume a handful of such nuts on daily basis for enhanced immunity.
#2: Prevention and treatment of urinary tract infections
Urinary tract infections- UTIs, are caused by a number of different harmful bacteria. Medical treatments often involved the injection of antibiotics in treating UTIs but a safer and more natural way of dealing with the situation is to increase the number of probiotics that are naturally present in the body, and that will help fight off the proliferation of harmful bacteria causing such UTIs.
#3: Improved digestive functions
We all need more fiber in our diets, in order to develop a healthy digestive system that will eliminate toxic wastes while facilitating the absorption of nutrients. Fiber are known to bind themselves with waste materials(including fat) and increase the bulkiness of stool , thus speeding up the movement of toxic wastes from the intestinal walls, hence they can be eliminated easily from the body. Walnuts are known to contain substantial amount of fiber that can facilitate healthy digestive system, but you need to consume handful of them on daily basis to enjoy these benefits.
#4: Healing of inflammatory bowel syndrome (IBS)
Since probiotics are considered living microorganisms, they do offer several therapeutic benefits for several gastro-intestinal disorders. Some of the commonest irritable bowel syndrome disorders are; diarrhea, and constipation, these disorders are known to cause an inflammation to the walls of the digestive tract, thus creating some painful sensation in humans. The increase in the number of probiotics can help speed up the healing process of the gastro-intestinal tract, thus facilitating the recovery of the patient. This benefits can only be achieved with regular consumption of walnut.
#5: Lowered risks of certain food borne diseases
Have you ever wondered why certain some probiotics such as Lactic acid bacteria are used in the preservation of certain food? It is simply because of its powers to stop the growth and development of harmful bacteria. With the consumption of substantial walnut and an increase in the levels of probiotics in the gut, the risks of developing certain food borne diseases are quite low because of the protective nature of the probiotics. Just like in all other cases, you need to consume substantial amount of walnut alongside other probiotic foods, in order to enjoy these benefits.
Aside from the benefits highlighted above, the consumption of walnut has also been linked to several other benefits. Men who consume walnuts regularly do witness a rapid improvement in their fertility. For instance, walnut consumption has been linked to an improvement in sperm quality. Similarly, consumption of walnuts can also increase sperm motility, morphology and vitality.
Aside from boosting fertility, walnuts is known to contain numerous neuro-protective compounds, which include the likes of Folate, melatonin, Vitamin E, and Omega-3 fats and lots of antioxidants. Researches have indicated that you may need to consume 3-4 handfuls of walnuts on daily basis, in order to enjoy all the numerous benefits that has been explained in this article.