A team of researchers from King’s College London investigated the impact of whole and ground almonds on the composition of gut microbes. The study, published today in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, is funded by the Almond Board of California. The gut microbiome consists of thousands of micro-organisms living in the gut. These play a vital role in digesting nutrients and can have a positive or negative influence on our health, including our digestive and immune systems. The mechanisms of how the gut microbiomes have an impact on human health is still being investigated, but evidence suggests eating specific types of food can positively influence the types of bacteria in our gut or what they do in our gut.
Researchers at King’s College London recruited 87 healthy adults who were already eating less than the recommended amount of dietary fibre and who snacked on typical unhealthy snacks (e.g. chocolate, crisps). Participants were split into three groups: one group changed their snacks for 56 g of whole almonds a day, another for 56 g of ground almonds a day, and the control group ate energy-matched muffins as a control. The trial lasted four weeks. (Image: istock)