Jeff sent me an email with the above title and a link to a press release, “Nut consumption reduces risk of death,” which begins:
According to the largest study of its kind, people who ate a daily handful of nuts were 20 percent less likely to die from any cause over a 30-year period than those who didn’t consume nuts . . . Their report, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, contains further good news: The regular nut-eaters were found to be more slender than those who didn’t eat nuts, a finding that should alleviate fears that eating a lot of nuts will lead to overweight. . . .
For the new research, the scientists were able to tap databases from two well-known, ongoing observational studies that collect data on diet and other lifestyle factors and various health outcomes. The Nurses’ Health Study provided data on 76,464 women between 1980 and 2010, and the Health Professionals’ Follow-Up Study yielded data on 42,498 men from 1986 to 2010. . . .
Sophisticated data analysis methods were used to rule out other factors that might have accounted for the mortality benefits. For example, the researchers found that individuals who ate more nuts were leaner, less likely to smoke, and more likely to exercise, use multivitamin supplements, consume more fruits and vegetables, and drink more alcohol. However, analysis was able to isolate the association between nuts and mortality independently of these other factors. . . .
The authors noted that this large study cannot definitively prove cause and effect; nonetheless, the findings are strongly consistent with “a wealth of existing observational and clinical trial data to support health benefits of nut consumption on many chronic diseases.” . . .
The study was supported by National Institutes of Health and a research grant from the International Tree Nut Council Nutrition Research & Education Foundation.
The press release did not link to the study—what’s with that, anyway, how hard would it be to include a link???—but a quick google led to this article, “Association of nut consumption with total and cause-specific mortality,” by Ying Bao, Jiali Han, Frank Hu, Edward Giovannucci, Meir Stampfer, Walter Willett, and Charles Fuchs.