Jump to content

Recommended Posts

Personally,  I eat a lot of nuts.  Primarily pistachios and almonds,  secondarily peanuts, followed by cashews, pine nuts and  walnuts.    The skins (pellicles) on the nuts contain a lot of healthy phytochemicals apparently, so I  eat them from the  pistachio shells  and on peanuts, and avoid blanched almonds.

Edited by Sibiriak

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
16 hours ago, Gordo said:

what kind of nuts were used in PREDIMED? 

 

Michael Rae:

Quote

The PREDIMED trial was a massive, multi-year, randomized controlled trial of a healthy diet vs. a higher-fat Mediterranean diet with either nuts or EVOO as the fat source. To ensure that people were actually taking their "medicine," subjects were not only given extensive in-person and written counseling on how to follow their assigned diets, but then followed up with annual in-person interviews on adherence to their assigned diets, but were given their nuts or EVOO  for free to ensure compliance — which was then verified with biomarker data (urinary hydroxytyrosol, the main phenolic in EVOO, for the olive oil; plasma alpha-linolenic acid for the nuts, since walnuts were one of the 3 nut types in the nut mix provided to the nut group (along with almonds and hazelnuts); and plasma oleic acid, as a marker for both EVOO and nuts).

https://www.crsociety.org/topic/11719-olive-oil-healthy-or-not/?tab=comments#comment-17306

 

Edited by Sibiriak

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My strategy about nuts has remained substantially unchanged. A few of points which I believe are worth mentioning and have been at least in part already hinted at.

  • Walnuts are very good, but their fats are also very prone to oxidation. So, if shelled, they only keep a few months at shelf temperature. Even if unshelled, after 6 months they start acquiring a slightly rancid taste, different from the healthy taste just after the crop. So, what I do is eat plenty of walnuts, unshelled, from just after the crop (October-November in the northern hemisphere) to May, June max. Right now, I'm starting to feel the inception of the oxidation process. So I'm going to switch to other kinds of nuts, unless I can find walnuts from the southern hemisphere (Chile is a main producer).
  • Almonds are excellent, rich in tocopherols, magnesium, fiber if not skinned, also plenty low-methionine protein.  The queen of nuts I call them. Even if shelled, they do not get easily rancid, so are good the whole year around. As far as I noticed, there are two main kinds, the Californian, with a smooth skin and sweetish. the Mediterranean,  with a rougher skin and bitterish, definitely tastier, probably because of a very low content in amigdalyne (the Cyanide compound) and other phytonutrients. For this reason, this kind of almonds are probably best for xenohormesis. Too many of them may be hard to digest, because of the skin. 
  • Hazelnuts are great but sometimes expensive, in Italy they are pre-empted by the producers of Nutella and other junkish food. very good either raw and roasted. Nutritional profile similar to almonds, maybe even more tocopherols, iron, less magnesium, lots of copper.
  • Pine nuts are very expensive but I eat them once in a while, the diterpene pinene is another desirable xenhormetic compound
  • Pistachio nuts are very good, rich in pyridoxine, I don't eat 'em often since they are not always fresh here and definitely expensive. If fresh, I'll usually binge for a while, but I eat them occasionally.
  • Brazil nuts: I eat one per day, trying to find brands with declared selenium content, but beware: the content is probably measured occasionally in batches. It cannot be always the same as I see on the wrappings. Fake numbers, I'm afraid.
  • Sunflower seeds: very rich in some vitamins and minerals, especially tocopherols, I eat them regularly but in moderate amounts, too many of'em will kill my digestion.
  • Pumpkin seeds: this is an exceptional food, with lots of protein, and minerals, a real bounty, I'll make sure to have them always available, even in moderate amounts they contribute to the daily requirements of some nutrients.
  • Peanuts: excellent for their protein and niacin content, I find their best nutritional value and optimized digestion when slightly roasted and without salt.
  • Macadamia nuts: exquisite tasting, not very glamorous in micronutrient compounds, good for lowcarb diets, very expensive here, I eat them occasionally to add some diversity in phytonutrients.
  • More nuts and seeds: Baru nuts can be found in the USA, I'd be really curious to taste them, they are wild nuts from Brasil worthy to be eaten occasionally. Sesame seeds, flaxseed, hempseeds, are all good to provide as many phytonutrients and xenhormetic compounds as possible.

I do not count omega3/omega6 ratio any longer. In my opinion, it's not a governing factor in healtspan/ lifespan,  focusing our energies elsewhere can be more advantageous. Also, it would make it impossible to eat plenty of nuts, since their content is most frequently inevitably  shifted toward a very low n3/n6 ratio. The above being said, some pretty credible guys like Dr. Greger, Dr. Fuhrman, seem to support the idea of a higher n3 to n6 ratio. As said in previous posts, literature does not support very much this idea though.

 

Edited by mccoy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 5/10/2020 at 5:12 AM, mccoy said:

...

I do not count omega3/omega6 ratio any longer. In my opinion, it's not a governing factor in healtspan/ lifespan,  focusing our energies elsewhere can be more advantageous. Also, it would make it impossible to eat plenty of nuts, since their content is most frequently inevitably  shifted toward a very low n3/n6 ratio. ...

I have been making a conscious effort to change my Omega-3/Omega-6 ratio for over a year now and the initial results were rather encouraging, with my cholesterol dropping from the high 170s to the 150s (4.0) at the last check up, with other blood markers also improving a bit.  My HSCRP has always been low, at 0.03 mg/L. 

Currently I eat about 30g of raw unpasteurized almonds and about 15g of raw walnuts a day and then eat about 40g of flax each day for the Omega-3 balance.  Other fats come from cacao nibs (15g nowadays) and avocado (about 90g).  According to Cronometer, my Omega-3/Omega-6 ratio is less than 1:2 and I don't find it difficult at all keeping it there.

There is quite a bit of supporting evidence for consuming more Omega-3 and keeping the ratio low, IMO:

https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/medicine-and-dentistry/polyunsaturated-fatty-acid

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not debating here the assumed protective role of n3-PUFAs, although some authors may have exaggerated as to its importance, at least for the majority of the population.

I couldn't find in the link you provided the specific article on the benefits of a proper ratio.

Anyway, If you think you are having good results, then you do the right thing in following those guidelines (however, the drop in TC might be due to other factors)

For some time, I've been avoiding sunflower seeds and sources of hi- n6-PUFAs to pursue the target of the allegedly optimal ratio.

Nevertheless presently, in my moderately Informed, conceptually-guided, feedback-driven, n=1 decision-making strategy, I simply think that sacrificing the assured nutritional benefits of a substantial amount of walnuts, almonds,  sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds and the variety of n6 rich nuts and seeds for the sake of a presumed, debated optimal ratio may not constitute an advantage at all.

Edited by mccoy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm agnostic on the ratio question, although not too concerned. I think that almonds and walnuts with flaxmeal are pretty ideal - given that almonds are mostly MUFA, and the n6:n3 ratio of walnuts is on the order of 4:1 so not too insane; throw in some flaxmeal, and really you should be fine, the flaxmeal being there mostly for the n3 (but also other benefits). You have to see the diet as a whole, so when you are looking for things like ratios, you can't just look at a single component, like nuts, but the entire diet - for me, another source of long chain omega-3 FA is the fatty fish I eat some 1-2 times a week (mostly salmon). I think as long as you consume all EFAs, you should be fine, and the optimal ratio (assuming the ratio is important at all) might be different for different people - after all, everyone's physiology has slightly different demands. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 5/13/2020 at 8:30 AM, TomBAvoider said:

... I think that almonds and walnuts with flaxmeal are pretty ideal....

Yep, this is my conclusion, too.  About 30-50g of flax daily boosts the ratio sufficiently for most, unless one drinks vegetable oils. Just by consuming flax daily, my ratio stays at bellow 2, without any further effort.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the pointer Tom, Yup.  I buy ground flaxseed- Webber organic stuff from Costco and store it in the freezer.

Edited by Clinton

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Personally, I don't trust any commercially sold flaxmeal. Instead, I buy flax SEEDS and put them in the freezer. Then, I grind up a WEEKLY batch from some of the seeds and store the resulting flaxmeal in the freezer too. So, I gradually grind "on demand" - everything is kept in the freezer.

The reason I don't buy flaxmeal is because (a) I don't know how long or under what conditions the flaxmeal has been kept before it hit the store, and (b) regardless of any of that, the fact is that the flaxmeal is usually stored in room temperature (or slightly below) in the store for however long - far from optimal. The n3 FA oxidizes very fast, unless kept intact in the seed - or in a dark freezer immediately after grinding. Far safer to buy SEEDS, put in freezer and grind yourself small batches every few days. It takes me 2 minutes to grind up a batch that lasts me a week. YMMV.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 minutes ago, TomBAvoider said:

Personally, I don't trust any commercially sold flaxmeal. Instead, I buy flax SEEDS and put them in the freezer. Then, I grind up a WEEKLY batch from some of the seeds and store the resulting flaxmeal in the freezer too. So, I gradually grind "on demand" - everything is kept in the freezer.

The reason I don't buy flaxmeal is because (a) I don't know how long or under what conditions the flaxmeal has been kept before it hit the store, and (b) regardless of any of that, the fact is that the flaxmeal is usually stored in room temperature (or slightly below) in the store for however long - far from optimal. The n3 FA oxidizes very fast, unless kept intact in the seed - or in a dark freezer immediately after grinding. Far safer to buy SEEDS, put in freezer and grind yourself small batches every few days. It takes me 2 minutes to grind up a batch that lasts me a week. YMMV.

Oh, dude!  Why do you put these things in my head?

I've been buying this from Amazon and it reads and tastes OK, although grinding is probably better.  It's presumably sealed right after grinding and there is limited oxidation until the package is opened.

What do you grind it in?  I found that doing it in a coffee grinder is a real pain.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I simply bought an extra electric coffee grinder that's dedicated to this - and I find it super easy. Just throw in a half cup seeds, grind for a spell and empty into a jar that goes into the freezer. Then daily I take a bit, and it lasts a week until the next grinding session.

The first few grinding sessions are when you learn how long to do it - I do it with pulses (i.e. I pulse the motor - wrrr, wrrr, wrrr) until I see a certain consistency and stop. The idea being you don't want to grind it too long so it becomes overly sticky (btw. if you grind most medium roast coffee beans too long, you'll get the "sticky" effect too), but long enough so do get to no "seeds" visible. It's really pretty short.

After you empty the container into the jar, you can optionally brush the grinder cup with a small brush - I do it most of the time, but it's no big deal. And that's it.

Obviously, people can get super anal about this - just look at the whole "grinding science" with coffee beans. I don't want to spend too much time dicking around with it. To me, the only important part of grinding is not to do it in "continuous" mode, because the blades move so fast that they can develop very high temperature and oxidize the delicate n3 in the flaxmeal (which is another reason I'm unenthusiastic about commerical flaxmeal). So, my solution is to pulse it, each pulse is about half a second or so - that way the blades never get too hot to burn the seeds. But the super obsessive do manual grinding with those hand crank grinders, that way there's zero danger of heat - to me that's excessive, and my method works just as well. YMMV.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, TomBAvoider said:

Far safer to buy SEEDS, put in freezer and grind yourself small batches every few days. It takes me 2 minutes to grind up a batch that lasts me a week. YMMV.

This is what I do too. I store the seeds and the meal in the freezer to minimize peroxidation. 

--Dean 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The only thing I see missing from this thread is a discussion of nuts and advanced glycation end products. Roasted/cooked nuts tend to have fairly high levels of AGE's and this might be problematic. I know that one of the dietary shifts that Dr. Greger made over the past few years is to only consume raw nuts and to avoid roasted nuts. I've decided to follow his lead on the topic and buy raw nuts when available (sometimes from nuts.com - also a great place to buy organic nuts from). I also have a preference for organic, not that I believe it will result in personal health benefits for me (though I don't think it can hurt), but rather because I believe it's a small act of compassion for the workers who spray pesticides and suffer higher cancer rates as a result. I also believe that organic generally will result in a healthier planet. There is more than enough glyphosate and Round-Up in this atmosphere already. 

Nuts and seeds make a CR lifestyle an absolute pleasure... I top virtually every meal with a nice variety of nuts and seeds.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't disagree with the AGE's comment; but if we could come back to the oxidation discussion and why many are buying whole seeds, grinding and freezing.

Grinding and freezing sounds (and is likely) optimal.  I'l just give the reason I've never worried much about it is this:  I think the same folks here that are grinding whole seeds and freezing, are also not keen on taking fist-fulls of 'anti-oxidants'.

My take on it is simply this: since we can agree that taking more anti-oxidants has about ... ZERO health benefits; likewise the over-oxidation that my flaxseeds might have been exposed to might have an extremely small detrimental (or the same ZERO) effect on my overall 'oxidant' status at the end of the day.  Heck - maybe the oxidation is a hormetic insult that ends up being beneficial. 

In fact I'm almost pro-oxidant at this point: How about top-up exercise, cruciferous veggies, some CR, a cold shower and make the meat suit come up with a plan on how the f- to compensate; it WILL compensate ... and for the better.  It seems very much like everything beneficial is an insult; hormetic ... it forces the body to improve for next time.  We need nutrition but exogenous anti-oxidants ... and perhaps even avoiding oxidation is not too helpful.

I am only trying to put this in perspective against the 'big picture'; maybe that time grinding seeds could give you 'more bang for the buck' if you spent it in an area where you have a 'hole'; like stretching or lifting or running.

Maybe if you spend 15 minutes per week grinding flax seeds and instead bought the 'possibly' oxidized bag off the shelf like me, BUT then invested that 15 minutes getting nutty with some dumbbells or doing some push-ups on the floor and pull-ups in the door-frame you'd have filled in more holes in your overall all-cause-mortality vulnerability than stay idle and grinding seeds.

Edited by Clinton

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

(1)It takes me at most about 2 minutes a week of the whole “grinding” process. Not a time sink.

(2)The issue is not an oxidative insult to the body. It is the destruction/compromise of the beneficial properties of the n3 FA  -  i.e. an oxidative insult to the food. A rancid FA is like a medication that’s gone bad. The oxygen has not attacked your body, the oxygen attacked your neutraceutical.

Now, maybe a rancid n3 or bad medication (f.ex. say, spoiled statin) can act as a hormetic (highly speculative!), but what is not speculative is that an ineffective statin doesn’t provide the purported benefits of a lowered cholesterol. On the whole that strikes me as a risky gamble. YMMV. 

Of course, how much rancidity there is in any given commercial purchase of flaxmeal is an unknown. However, the concerning issue is that n3 appears highly susceptible to oxidization, unlike some FAs. That is enough for me to go ahead and sacrifice the 2 minutes a week, but obviously people will each reach their own conclusions on the cost/benefit, so again YMMV.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tom,

Sincerely thanks for explaining the differences between lowering the quality of the product and only increasing oxidation.
OK - I can easily follow suit for a couple minutes per week for my regimen.  

I am always open to areas of improvement,

Clinton

Edited by Clinton

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 5/16/2020 at 7:45 PM, Ron Put said:

ep, this is my conclusion, too.  About 30-50g of flax daily boosts the ratio sufficiently for most, unless one drinks vegetable oils.

That's totally right, but 40 grams average daily is a hell of a lot of ground flaxseed! Together with all the fiber-rich foods I eat, it gives me the sh1ts!

I agree that flaxseed is a main ingredient of a healthy diet and I too have been grinding regularly the seeds, storing them in the fridge (the freezer is maybe a little overboard?).

But right now I'm following the practical strategy which Dean explained a while ago: like he does, I'm simulating a couple of fish meals per week by taking vegan EPA-DHA supplements. It doesn't send me 4 times a day to the bathroom!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 5/16/2020 at 5:27 PM, Ron Put said:

What do you grind it in?  I found that doing it in a coffee grinder is a real pain.

I eat 1 TBSP (the recommended amount) of freshly ground flaxseed per day (most days), I blend the whole seeds just before using, in a blendtec which works great and takes only a few seconds while I'm prepping the rest of my meal - I also add chia seed at the same time, and usually turmeric with whole black peppercorns and some other rotation of spices/seeds.  Apparently cyanide toxicity is a concern at the 1/2 cup level dose of flaxseed but I doubt anyone is consuming that much.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Gordo!

Organic cyanide probably isn't dangerous -- it's the inorganic stuff that's severely poisonous.  I discovered this, when my blood work test of heavy metals showed everything near zero, except arsenic, which was high.  My nephrologist, who had ordered the tests, ordered more refined tests, of arsenic types.  Mine was organic; inorganic arsenic was very low.   And the test results indicated that organic arsenic is not believed to be dangerous.

  --  Saul

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 minutes ago, Saul said:

Hi Gordo!

Organic cyanide probably isn't dangerous -- it's the inorganic stuff that's severely poisonous.  I discovered this, when my blood work test of heavy metals showed everything near zero, except arsenic, which was high.  My nephrologist, who had ordered the tests, ordered more refined tests, of arsenic types.  Mine was organic; inorganic arsenic was very low.   And the test results indicated that organic arsenic is not believed to be dangerous.

  --  Saul

Please let me know if this is a joke - I'm not sure.

What would be sources of inorganic cyanide?  Organic sources occur naturally from food then?

Edited by Clinton

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dr. Greger on cyanide in flaxseeds:

https://nutritionfacts.org/video/should-we-be-concerned-about-the-cyanide-from-flaxseed/

Edit: oops, I see this is the same link Gordo posted.

Speaking of the Blendtec - it's a bit big for grinding flaxseed to *my* eye, but of course whatever works for you. I grind in a grinder that has a detachable cup:

Epica Coffee and Spice Grinder

That way all I have to do is detach the cup and dump the flaxmeal into a sealable glass jar and pop the jar into the freezer. Very fast operation:

Premium 8oz Reusable Airtight Chefs Glass Spice and Salt Jar with Metal Clasp

Edited by TomBAvoider

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×