Nut and seed consumption is inversely associated with metabolic syndrome in females but not males: findings from the 2005–2018 NHANES data

Tommy H.T. Wong, Elena S. George, Gavin Abbott, Robin M. Daly, Ekavi N. Georgousopoulou, Sze Yen Tan

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Abstract

Purpose: To assess the association between nut and seed consumption, both combined and separately, and metabolic syndrome and its components, including fasting glucose, triglycerides, high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, central obesity, and blood pressure. Methods: This cross-sectional analysis used data from 22,687 adults (aged ≥ 18 years) involved in seven cycles (2005–2018) of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES). Habitual nut and seed intakes were estimated by the Multiple Source Method using data from two 24-h dietary recalls. Metabolic syndrome was ascertained using biochemical data and self-reported medication use. Sex-specific effect estimates were obtained using logistic and linear regressions adjusting for lifestyle and socioeconomic confounders. Results: Compared to non-consumers, female, but not male, habitual consumers of either nuts or seeds had lower odds of having metabolic syndrome (OR: 0.83, 95% CI 0.71, 0.97). Both nut intake alone and seed intake alone were inversely associated with high fasting glucose and low HDL-cholesterol in females compared to non-consumers. When restricted to habitual consumers only, the combined intake of nuts and seeds at 6 g/day was associated with the lowest triglycerides and highest HDL-cholesterol in females. Combined consumption of nuts and seeds up to one ounce-equivalent (15 g) per day, but not in higher intake levels, was inversely associated with metabolic syndrome, high fasting glucose, central obesity, and low HDL-cholesterol in females. Conclusions: Nut and seed consumption, both separately or combined, below 15 g/day was inversely associated with metabolic syndrome and its component conditions in females but not males.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2415-2427
Number of pages13
JournalEuropean Journal of Nutrition
Volume62
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2023

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