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Eat this to Help You Fight Stress

A diet rich in walnuts and walnut oil may prepare the body to deal better with stress, according to a team of Penn State researchers who looked at how these foods, which contain polyunsaturated fats, influence blood pressure at rest and under stress. As reported in Science Daily, this is the first study to show that walnuts and walnut oil reduce blood pressure during stress. The researchers also found:

“(T)hat iincluding walnuts and walnut oil in the diet lowered both resting blood pressure and blood pressure responses to stress in the laboratory. Participants gave a speech or immersed their foot in cold water as a stressor. Adding flax seed oil to the walnut diet did not further lower blood pressure.

“Results (also) showed that average diastolic blood pressure -- the "bottom number" or the pressure in the arteries when the heart is resting -- was significantly reduced during the diets containing walnuts and walnut oil.”

The study is published in the current issue of the Journal of the American College of Nutrition.

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