Eating This One Food Strengthens Beneficial Brainwave Frequencies

A new study by researchers at Loma Linda University Health has found that eating nuts on a regular basis strengthens brainwave frequencies associated with cognition, healing, learning, memory and other key brain functions.

An abstract of the study — which was presented in the nutrition section of the Experimental Biology 2017 meetings in San Diego, California, and published in The FASEB Journal — may be accessed online.

Nuts are one of the most nutrient-dense foods available, with an unrivalled unsaturated fatty acid, plant protein, fibre, mineral, vitamin profile. Nuts also contain other bioactive compounds such as phytosterols and phenolic antioxidants.

An impressive array of studies–large and small, from around the world–have now found that people who eat nuts regularly cut their risk of heart disease by as much as half, compared to those who rarely or never eat nuts. Eating nuts daily has been linked to lower all-cause mortality.

In the study — which is titled “Nuts and brain: Effects of eating nuts on changing electroencephalograph brainwaves”– researchers found that some nuts stimulated some brain frequencies more than others. Pistachios, for instance, produced the greatest gamma wave response, which is critical for enhancing cognitive processing, information retention, learning, perception and rapid eye movement during sleep. Peanuts, which are actually legumes, but were part of the study, produced the highest delta response, which is associated with healthy immunity, natural healing, and deep sleep.

The study’s principal investigator, Lee Berk, DrPH, MPH, associate dean for research at the LLU School of Allied Health Professions, said that while researchers found variances between the six nut varieties tested, all of them were high in very beneficial antioxidants, with walnuts containing the highest antioxidant concentrations of all.

Prior studies have demonstrated that nuts benefit the body in several significant ways: protecting the heart, fighting cancer, reducing inflammation and slowing the aging process. But Berk said he believes too little research has focused on how they affect the brain.

“This study provides significant beneficial findings by demonstrating that nuts are as good for your brain as they are for the rest of your body,” Berk said, adding that he expects future studies will reveal that they make other contributions to the brain and nervous system as well.

To gather research data on nut consumption and the brain, Berk — who is best known for four decades of research into the health benefits of happiness and laughter, as well as a cluster of recent studies on the antioxidants in dark chocolate — assembled a team of 13 researchers to explore the effects of regular nut consumption on brainwave activity.

In the introduction to the study, the team noted that different kinds of nuts contain different types of antioxidants. What they didn’t know, however, was whether different nut antioxidants had different modulatory effects on brainwave frequencies response.

To find out, Berk and his colleagues tested the effects of consuming nuts on frequency modulations inside the brain. He said the human brain produces five separate types of waves — delta, theta, alpha, beta and gamma — and that each wave produces its own frequency and occupies its own bandwidth. “Sort of like radio stations on a dial,” he said.

The team developed a pilot study using consenting subjects who consumed almonds, cashews, peanuts, pecans, pistachios and walnuts. Electroencephalograms (EEG) were taken to measure the strength of brainwave signals. EEG wave band activity was then recorded from nine regions of the scalp associated with cerebral cortical function.

Michael Samardzija, PhD, JD, associate vice president for research affairs, says Loma Linda University researchers have been discovering the health benefits of nuts for decades. He cites multiple studies conducted by Joan Sabate, MD, DrPH, and other researchers at the School of Public Health, which have demonstrated that nuts promote cardiovascular health, cancer prevention and healthy aging.

“These results coming from Dr. Berk’s research at the School of Allied Health Professions show that nuts can now be considered one of the superfoods helping to support brain health,” Samardzija said.

 

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Seven spices, food medicines and home remedies that could save your life

What does vibrant health actually look like, and how can an individual accurately assess his own quality of life? These are some of the questions that an increasing number of Americans are now asking as they witness a cascade of ill health sweep the nation in the form of allergies, autoimmune disease, neurological problems, developmental disorders, and chronic illness. But the answers to these important questions have to be experienced in order to be fully understood, and the only way to experience them is to actually live them.

Here are seven spices, food medicines and home remedies that can not only help you experience a dramatic and noticeable health renewal, but may also end up saving your life later on down the road: (more…)

The Health Benefits of Walnuts – A True “Super Food”

The Greeks called the walnut “the nut of Jupiter,” fit for the gods. Native to Persia, walnuts now come from California, which has over 122,000 acres of walnut trees. The tree itself is very hardy and is 15 years old before reaching full production. The average tree produces for 45 years.

Walnuts are high in unsaturated, fatty acids, iron, and B vitamins. The oil in walnuts has a tendency to absorb strong odors, so they should be kept in cold storage. Manufacturers of syrup toppings, ice cream, candy, casseroles and baking products all rely on walnuts.

Although many nuts have proven to be really beneficial to your health, studies are showing that walnuts contain almost twice as many antioxidants as other nuts. And that’s not just an interesting statistic — all of those antioxidants really do your body a lot of good. Below, we’ll take a look at two big stand-out benefits of walnuts. (more…)

25 Foods: In The New Year, Eat More To Weigh Less

The tendency to eat one or two large meals per day of all the wrong foods is what eventually leads us to tip the scales. You need to consume more meals, and of the right foods to weigh less. If you make one weight loss resolution in 2013 (in addition to exercise), make it to include and frequently consume the following 25 foods above all else.
* Signifies sources should be organic to minimize pesticide load and maxmize nutrient content.
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USDA green-lights field trials of Monsanto drought-resistant corn after admitting it performs no better than natural corn

The U.S. Department of Agriculture‘s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) does not even pretend to legitimately evaluate genetically-modified organisms (GMO) before approving them anymore, having recently green-lighted approval for a new variety of “drought-resistant” GM corn produced by Monsanto that admittedly grows no better under drought conditions than natural varieties do. (more…)

Raw Walnuts Have 15x More Antioxidant Potency than Vitamin E

Walnuts are perhaps best known for being the quintessential healthy brain-food. But who knew that walnuts were also winning top prizes for their heart-healthy, free-radical fighting, antioxidant properties as well?

Recent scientific evidence shows how the walnut may possibly be the number one food on the planet for heart healthy antioxidant support. And it’s not just that the walnut alone that was studied for its antioxidant quantity. (more…)

A Nutty Way to Prevent Diabetes

Researchers have found that eating more almonds helps prevent type 2 diabetes and heart disease. It does so by improving your insulin sensitivity and lowering levels of LDL (“bad”) cholesterol.

About 16 million Americans are today believed to have “prediabetes.” This is a condition that is a precursor to type 2 diabetes. By 2020, half all Americans are expected to have either prediabetes or type 2 diabetes. Because of this, nutritional approaches to prevention are essential.

A new study has found that almonds are one way to improve your insulin sensitivity and lower LDL (“bad”) cholesterol in people with prediabetes.

Researchers looked at the effects of consuming an almond-enriched diet on factors linked to the progression of type 2 diabetes and heart disease. It included 65 adults with prediabetes, average age 54. They either received a control diet (15%-20% calories from protein, 10% total energy from saturated fat, 60%-70% from carbohydrate and monounsaturated fatty acids and cholesterol) or a diet that ensured that 20% of the calories came from almonds.

The study lasted four months. Those people eating almonds showed significantly improved LDL-cholesterol levels and measures of insulin sensitivity. Both are huge risk factors for heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

Nutrients in almonds, such as fiber and unsaturated fat, have been shown to help reduce LDL-cholesterol levels, increase insulin sensitivity and increase beta-cell function, all of which can help to prevent the development of type 2 diabetes and reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. These explain why the almond group in the study experienced such health benefits.

There is a growing body of evidence tying almonds to a healthy heart and cardiovascular system. But this new study adds something: it shows that almonds might help reduce your risk of certain chronic diseases through their nutrient composition. Almonds offer 3.5 grams of fiber, 13 grams of unsaturated fat and only one gram of saturated fat per one-ounce serving.

It is another promising sign that, for people with risk factors for chronic diseases, such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease, dietary changes may help to improve factors that play a potential role in the disease development.

If you are concerned about the fat content of almonds, know on one hand that at least it is largely healthy fats. But you can aim to incorporate a healthy handful of almonds each day to get this desired effect. Make sure they are the unsalted variety.

By Victor Marchione, M.D. on 01/21/2011