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Nutrients. 2018 Jan 26;10(2). pii: E126. doi: 10.3390/nu10020126.

Almond Consumption and Processing Affects the Composition of the Gastrointestinal Microbiota of Healthy Adult Men and Women: A Randomized Controlled Trial.

Author information

1
Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL 61801, USA. hholsche@illinois.edu.
2
Division of Nutritional Sciences, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL 61801, USA. hholsche@illinois.edu.
3
Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL 61801, USA. amtaylr3@illinois.edu.
4
Division of Nutritional Sciences, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL 61801, USA. ksswanso@illinois.edu.
5
Department of Animal Sciences, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL 61801, USA. ksswanso@illinois.edu.
6
USDA, ARS, Beltsville Human Nutrition Research Center, Beltsville, MD 20705, USA. Janet.Novotny@ARS.USDA.GOV.
7
USDA, ARS, Beltsville Human Nutrition Research Center, Beltsville, MD 20705, USA. David.Baer@ARS.USDA.GOV.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Almond processing has been shown to differentially impact metabolizable energy; however, the effect of food form on the gastrointestinal microbiota is under-investigated.

OBJECTIVE:

We aimed to assess the interrelationship of almond consumption and processing on the gastrointestinal microbiota.

DESIGN:

A controlled-feeding, randomized, five-period, crossover study with washouts between diet periods was conducted in healthy adults (n = 18). Treatments included: (1) zero servings/day of almonds (control); (2) 1.5 servings (42 g)/day of whole almonds; (3) 1.5 servings/day of whole, roasted almonds; (4) 1.5 servings/day of roasted, chopped almonds; and (5) 1.5 servings/day of almond butter. Fecal samples were collected at the end of each three-week diet period.

RESULTS:

Almond consumption increased the relative abundances of Lachnospira, Roseburia, and Dialister (p ≤ 0.05). Comparisons between control and the four almond treatments revealed that chopped almonds increased Lachnospira, Roseburia, and Oscillospira compared to control (p < 0.05), while whole almonds increased Dialister compared to control (p = 0.007). There were no differences between almond butter and control.

CONCLUSIONS:

These results reveal that almond consumption induced changes in the microbial community composition of the human gastrointestinal microbiota. Furthermore, the degree of almond processing (e.g., roasting, chopping, and grinding into butter) differentially impacted the relative abundances of bacterial genera.

KEYWORDS:

fat; fermentation; fiber; microbiome; nuts

PMID:
29373513
PMCID:
PMC5852702
DOI:
10.3390/nu10020126
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Conflict of interest statement

Partial support for this project was provided by the Almond Board of California and the USDA ARS. Baer and Novotny are employed by the USDA ARS and have received funding from the Almond Board of California. Holscher and Swanson have received funding from the USDA ARS. Taylor was funded by a Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition Graduate Fellowship and a College of Agricultural, Consumer, and Environmental Sciences Undergraduate Research Scholarship.

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