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Br J Nutr. 2011 May;105(10):1503-11. doi: 10.1017/S0007114510005283. Epub 2011 Jan 28.

Current guidelines for nut consumption are achievable and sustainable: a hazelnut intervention.

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Department of Human Nutrition, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand.


Nuts are known for their hypocholesterolaemic properties; however, to achieve optimal health benefits, nuts must be consumed regularly and in sufficient quantity. It is therefore important to assess the acceptability of regular consumption of nuts. The present study examined the long-term effects of hazelnut consumption in three different forms on 'desire to consume' and 'overall liking'. A total of forty-eight participants took part in this randomised cross-over study with three dietary phases of 4 weeks: 30 g/d of whole, sliced and ground hazelnuts. 'Overall liking' was measured in a three-stage design: a pre- and post-exposure tasting session and daily evaluation over the exposure period. 'Desire to consume' hazelnuts was measured during the exposure period only. Ratings were measured on a 150 mm visual analogue scale. Mean ratings of 'desire to consume' were 92 (SD 35) mm for ground, 108 (SD 33) mm for sliced and 116 (SD 30) mm for whole hazelnuts. For 'overall liking', the mean ratings were 101 (SD 29) mm for ground, 110 (SD 32) mm for sliced and 118 (SD 30) mm for whole hazelnuts. Ground hazelnuts had significantly lower ratings than both sliced (P ≤ 0·034) and whole hazelnuts (P < 0·001), with no difference in ratings between sliced and whole hazelnuts (P ≥ 0·125). For each form of nut, ratings of 'overall liking' and 'desire to consume' were stable over the exposure period, indicating that not only did the participants like the nuts, but also they wished to continue eating them. Therefore, the guideline to consume nuts on a regular basis appears to be a sustainable behaviour to reduce CVD.

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