The effects of including almonds in an energy-restricted diet on weight, body composition, visceral adipose tissue, blood pressure and cognitive function

Jaapna Dhillon, Purdue University


Inclusion of almonds in an energy restricted diet has been reported to enhance or have no effect on weight loss. Their effects specifically on visceral fat stores during energy restriction have not been widely examined. Additionally, almond consumption has been associated with reduced blood pressure, but whether this is linked to or is independent of changes of body composition has not been examined. Moreover, almond consumption during energy restriction may be an effective strategy for reversing the negative effects of dieting on cognitive performance. The unique nutrient profile of almonds also has the potential to influence cognitive function post-prandially. The post-lunch dip in cognition is a well-established phenomenon of decreased alertness, memory and vigilance after lunch consumption and can be affected by lunch composition. Almonds which are higher in fat and lower in carbohydrate may be able to reduce this post lunch dip in cognition. Consequently, this dissertation had three primary aims. The first aim was to evaluate the effects of almond consumption as part of an energy-restricted diet on weight, visceral and subcutaneous adipose depots and blood pressure compared to a nut-free energy restricted diet. The second aim was to evaluate the effects of almond consumption as part of an energy-restricted diet on cognitive function. The third aim was to evaluate the acute effects of almond consumption on the post-lunch dip in cognitive function. A secondary objective of this dissertation was to develop an analytical approach to identify metabolic profiles associated with almond consumption to ascertain compliance in long term clinical trials. (Abstract shortened by ProQuest.)




Mattes, Purdue University.

Subject Area

Nutrition|Cognitive psychology

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