Almond, Prunus amygdalus, is closely related to the peach, Prunus persica (Amygdalus persica), and likewise to the apricot, Prunus armeniaca. The almond nut is of two distinct types;
- Bitter almond – it contains a ferment, emulsin In water it acts on the glucoside, amygdalin, and yields glucose, benzaldehyde and hydrocyanic acid.
- Sweet almond – it also contains amygdalin but not the ferment, emulsin.
It is interesting to note that a cancer therapy, Laetrile 苦杏仁, which has been discredited and banned by government authorities, is described as an extract from the apricot kernel, and is for the most part hydrocyanic acid 氫氰酸. It has been hypothesized by the discoverer that this acid is destroyed in the body by normal cellular oxidative metabolism, but cancer cells, functioning without oxidative mechanisms, are unable to destroy the acid; thus they absorb it and are destroyed themselves.
The fiber in nuts may prevent human body from absorbing some fat, speeding weight loss. Almond eaters also lowered blood pressure. The vitamin E in almonds may keep skin supple.
Benefits – Colon polyps related:
Vitamin B2—Vitamin B2 is an important cofactor in folate metabolism. High levels of vitamin B2 have been shown protecting against colon polyps. Almonds provide a source of vitamin B-2. A ½-cup of roasted almonds provides 6.4 grams of fiber. Almond oil has some protective effect on the colon.
A deficiency of B vitamins can also cause constipation, therefore having foods high in B vitamins – such as almonds, most leafy greens, whole grains, would be beneficial.
Benefits – Diabetes related:
The health benefits of almonds for the diabetic has been explored. Studies have discovered almonds having beneficial effects on serum lipids 血脂 in diabetic patients (24 ps). Almonds reduce the surges in blood sugar by decreasing both insulin secretion and fat oxidation stress(9 ongoing research), in parallel improving fat and glucose profiles due to the increase in blood plasma vitamin E. (11,1 on going research)
The effect of regular almond consumption on blood glucose levels for people with type 2 diabetes has been investigated. With the daily consumption of 1 oz of almonds over a 12-week period was associated with a 4 per cent reduction in haemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) and the same reduction in body mass index (BMI).
The study, published in Diabetes Care, revealed that nuts such as almonds could help to maintain healthy levels of blood glucose and cholesterol for both men and post-menopausal women who suffer from type 2 diabetes.
The study found consuming a diet rich in almonds may help improving insulin sensitivity and decrease LDL-cholesterol levels in those with pre-diabetes, a condition in which people have blood glucose levels higher than normal but not high enough to be classified as diabetes.
Other common name(s): amygdalin, vitamin B17, Amigdalina B-17 Scientific/medical name(s): mandelonitrile beta-D-gentiobioside (the form found most often in Mexican clinics), mandelonitrile-beta-glucuronide (this is the patented drug Laetrile)
Serum lipid 血清油脂/血脂
Any major lipid in the circulation–total cholesterol, HDL, LDL, TGs. See Cholesterol, Triglyceride.
HDL – high-density lipoprotein
LDH – low-density lipoprotein
Why You Should Eat Almonds