A recent study from the University of South Australia found that including nuts in a calorie-restricted diet aimed at weight loss does not impede weight reduction and may actually contribute to positive outcomes. The research analysed results from seven randomised controlled trials focused on energy-restricted diets, examining weight changes and glycemic control.

According to UniSA researcher Professor Alison Coates, studies consistently showed that including nuts in diets did not lead to weight gain. She emphasised that nuts are nutrient-dense and should be incorporated into weight-loss plans as they do not adversely affect weight-loss efforts.

"People often avoid nuts when trying to lose weight because they think that the energy and fat content in nuts can contribute to weight gain," said Prof Coates.

Researchers examined seven studies and found that consuming 42-84 grams of nuts within energy-restricted (ER) diets led to

greater weight loss compared to ER diets without nuts in four of these studies. The weight loss achieved with nut-enriched ER diets ranged from an additional 1.4 to 7.4 kilograms. This benefit is attributed to nuts' effectiveness in reducing hunger, highlighting their potential to enhance weight loss outcomes when incorporated into calorie-controlled diets.

"If weight gain was a concern discouraging people from eating nuts -- rest assured that this is not the case. Nuts do not cause weight gain. Furthermore, they do not adversely affect weight loss, rather they appear to assist it," said Prof Coates.

According to Dr Sharayah Carter, co-author of the study. "For those who enjoy eating nuts, knowing that they can help meet weight loss goals, while also improving overall health is a huge plus. "It's also great for health professionals who can be confident in recommending nuts, in the context of a healthy diet, without concerns of an adverse effect on weight."
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