Researchers have found a nut that reduces your risk of colon cancer.
Right now your gut is filled with living organisms — a bacterial community that works together to keep you healthy.
This bacterial community is known as your gut microbiome. And, if you have a diverse gut microbiome, you also have a stronger immune system, a decreased risk of autoimmune diseases, less food allergies, better mental health, a healthier body weight…
Even a reduced risk of cancer.
So who doesn’t want that? But the question is: What do you need to do to diversify?
Well, first you need to recognize your gut microbiome for what it is: a living ecosystem. And, many things impact its health… and ultimately yours.
For example — where you live, how much you exercise, how much alcohol you drink, what you eat and other daily decisions — all have a huge bearing on what bacteria decide to take up residency in your gut.
But there’s one thing that has the most significant bearing on your gut microbiome — and that’s what you eat.
The latest research suggests that there is one food in particular that can go a long way toward helping you achieve your goal of greater gut health, while also reducing your cancer risk to boot…
Most recently, researchers from the University of Connecticut found that walnuts have an extremely positive effect on your gut microbiome — so positive, in fact, that they reduce your risk of colon cancer.
Basically, researchers discovered that walnuts act like a probiotic in your gut, which keeps your colon healthy, and ultimately prevents the growth of colon tumors.
More specifically, researchers found that mice who received 7 to 10.5 percent of their daily calories from walnuts had a 2.5 times lower risk of developing colon tumors.
How does this little nut offer such big benefits?
First off, walnuts have the highest dose of polyunsaturated fats of any tree nuts, including omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, which have documented anti-inflammatory powers. They also have the highest ratio of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. It’s important to have a balanced ratio of these two fatty acids.
But that’s not all. Walnuts also contain a special form of vitamin E, known as gamma-tocopherol vitamin E, that’s thought to have to have anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties.
And then there’s the antioxidants you get from walnuts. Walnuts contain an astonishing amount of antioxidants, and, as you know, antioxidants prevent oxidative stress and ward off cancer.
So if you’re ready to make a small dietary change that will have a big impact on your health, eat more walnuts. The researchers in this latest study found that eating just an ounce of walnuts per day — about 14 walnut halves — has the potential to provide you with the same gut-healing, anti-cancer benefits experienced by the mice in their study.
“The Gut’s Microbiome Changes Rapidly with Diet.” The Scientific American. http://www.scientificamerican.com. Retrieved June 3, 2016.
“11 overlooked factors that affect the bacteria on your body and help determine your health.” Business Insider. http://www.businessinsider.com. Retrieved June 3, 2016.
“Walnuts May Help Prevent Colon Cancer.” The University of Connecticut. http://today.uconn.edu. Retrieved June 3, 2016.
A. Moyad, S.K. Brumfield, K.J. Pienta. “Vitamin E, alpha- and gamma-tocopherol, and prostate cancer.” Urologic Oncology: Seminars and Original Investigations. 1999 May;17(2):85-90.
A.Vinson, Y. Cai. “Nuts, especially walnuts, have both antioxidant quantity and efficacy and exhibit significant potential health benefits.” Food & Function. 2012 Feb;3(2):134-40.