The addition of almonds to breakfast - long hailed as the most important meal of the day - may help sustain feelings of fullness based on the results of a recent study.

The study, Acute and second-meal effects of almond form in impaired glucose tolerant adults: a randomized crossover trial, published in February 2011 in the Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism, illustrates that consuming a breakfast containing almonds (a low glycemic index food) aids in stabilizing blood glucose levels for the better part of the day - while also keeping study participants satiated for a longer period of time.

"This research indicates that adding almonds to a carbohydrate-rich breakfast may result in lower post-meal blood glucose concentrations both after breakfast and lunch when compared to carbohydrate-rich breakfasts alone," said Dr. Richard Mattes, Distinguished Professor of Foods and Nutrition at Purdue University who co-authored the study along with Alisa M. Mori and Robert V. Considine from the Division of Endocrinology, Department of Medicine, Indiana University in Indianapolis. "Several components of almonds are thought to help moderate post-meal glucose levels, including unsaturated fatty acids and fiber." This is great news for Americans who rely on dietary changes to help in the attenuation of post-meal blood glucose responses.

The researchers assessed the effects of various forms of almonds on markers of insulin sensitivity and satiety in pre-diabetic subjects. Participants consuming a breakfast containing whole almonds experienced more sustained feelings of fullness and had lower blood glucose concentrations after breakfast and a second meal compared to subjects consuming the control breakfast. It was noted that whole almonds provided the greatest feeling of fullness.

The test breakfast that included whole almonds moderated post-meal glucose concentrations better than those that included almond butter, oil or flour.

Study Limitations: Although the test meals were matched for available carbohydrate content, they were not matched on energy value or macronutrient composition. Additional research is needed to assess the long-term effects of including almonds in the breakfast meal on blood glucose concentrations.

Source: Almond Board of California Press Release

Originally posted by on July 28, 2011.