London: They are known to be effective in reducing cholesterol, now a new research has found walnuts may also help your body cope with stress and cut blood pressure. Researchers at the Penn State university in the US foundthat people with high levels of bad cholesterol had lowerblood pressure in stressful situations when they had been on adiet rich in walnuts for three weeks. "This is the first study to show that walnuts reduceblood pressure during stress," said Professor Sheila West wholed the study. "People who show an exaggerated biological response tostress are at higher risk of heart disease," Prof West wasquoted as saying by the Daily Mail. For the study, the researchers recruited 22 participantswho were asked to give a three-minute speech or immerse onefoot in cold water -- both of which are triggers for stress. But it`s found that those with walnuts in their diets hadlower blood pressure, said Prof West. The researchers used three diets -- one without nuts, onewith walnuts and walnut oil and a third with walnuts andflaxseed oil. Adding flax oil did not affect blood pressure, but didhelp create an anti-inflammatory effect in arteries. Thiscould reduce the risk of heart disease, the researchers said.
"This work suggests that blood pressure is alsoreduced when a person is exposed to stress in their dailylife." Omega-3 fatty acids found in walnuts are known to helpreduce low-density lipoproteins, or bad cholesterol, and solower the risk of heart disease. PTI
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