Nuts Improve Blood Vessel Health

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Munching on almonds and walnuts significantly increases blood vessel dilation and reduces artery plaque, say West Virginia University scientists. In a two-day study, 27 overweight volunteers ate 77 grams of almonds (about 2.5 handfuls) along with their lunch one day; on another day, they ate 60 grams of walnuts (about two handfuls) with lunch. Measurements taken four hours after each meal found that both diets significantly increased blood vessel dilation and lowered markers of artery plaque. Both nuts also reduced heart rate and systolic blood pressure among the volunteers.