Doctor's Note

Adding nuts and seeds to one's salad boosts the bioavailability of the fat-soluble carotenoid phytonutrients in the greens. See my video Forgo Fat-Free Dressings?. Oil would work, but whole food sources of fat (and other nutrients!) are superior. For more on nuts and cholesterol see Nuts and Bolts of Cholesterol Lowering and for more on the adverse effects of too much sodium, see Dietary Guidelines: With a Grain of Big Salt and Salt OK if Blood Pressure is OK?If you haven't yet, you can subscribe to my videos for free by clicking here.For more context, check out my associated blog post, Stool Size and Breast Cancer Risk.
  • http://nutritionfacts.org/ Michael Greger M.D.

    Adding nuts and seeds to one’s salad boosts the bioavailability of the fat-soluble carotenoid phytonutrients in the greens. See my video Forego Fat-Free Dressings?. Oil would work, but whole food sources of fat (and other nutrients!) are superior. For more on nuts and cholesterol see Nuts and Bolts of Cholesterol Lowering and for more on the adverse effects of too much sodium, see Dietary Guidelines: With a Grain of Big Salt and Salt OK if Blood Pressure is OK?

    • http://poxacuatl.wordpress.com/ Strix

       I like that juice:oil comparison! I’ve got to remember that one.

      I went salt free several years ago; but I still enjoy olives. I eat the raw, whole, no-salt olives. They are (supposedly) an acquired taste — either love them or hate them, I guess. I happen to love them.
      Any problem with these? I’ve not heard of any.

    • Jason Dunn

      Do Sprouted Nuts have a greater nutritional value (as do sprouted seeds and beans) vs raw nuts?  Would this help kick the salad up a notch?  For the people who need the oily texture on their salad, is virgin coconut oil a better alternative to Olive oil?  This is starting to sound more like a recipe channel.  Any input would be greatly appreciated Dr. Greger (specifically on the sprouted nut).

      • Thea

         Jason:  I know you addressed Dr. Greger, but I have some thoughts that you might find helpful.

        re: sprouted nuts:  I got into the idea of sprouting when Dr. Greger did his series on broccoli and sprouting.  I bought a couple of books on the topic to learn more.  It’s been a while since I read those books, but if memory serves, I believe that they did say that sprouted nuts do indeed have more nutrition – including more absorb-able nutrition.  (“You are what you absorb.”)

        Re: coconut oil vs olive oil:  Dr. Greger covered coconut oil in this video:
        http://nutritionfacts.org/video/is-coconut-oil-good-for-you/

        Hope that was helpful.

        • Jason Dunn

          Fantastic – Thank you for the affirmation (my research on sprouting nuts has been minimal) and I am love’n the sprouted broccoli (thanks for the heads up at your Toronto visit Dr. Greger) and other delisous seeds and beans I have sprouted.
           
          Sprout on my friend, Sprout on!

    • Cynysha Thompson

      Dear Doctor Gregor,

      Your videos are PHENOMENAL!!! I share wherever and whenever I can on Facebook, Pinetrest, Google+ and Twitter. I live with Autoimmune Poly endocrine Syndrome. I cannot even list whether it’s I, II, III or IV because I bear the signs and symptoms in all four areas. I should not be alive based on all of the emergency room visits, hospital stays and allergies and through much prayer, intense research and videos like yours ………. I am alive and doing well. One of the most recent things I learned from you that has really, really helped me sort out so much of the madness in my life is your emphasis on consuming WHOLE foods. Processed foods on a whole is POISON to me but even organic and packaged foods were a recent growing issue and I really became disillusioned UNTIL I learned that I can still enjoy food BUT I must procure it in its organic, WHOLE state FIRST then transform it. So as far as cooking with oil goes, I purchase organic coconuts and process them at home to secure the oil and I can cook with this. This goes for everything else. I had to make a lot of changes and I’m learning as I go. It becomes clearer and clearer to me that man thrives when he eats as close to the soil as possible. Thank you for your time and videos!!!! They are GREATLY appreciated!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=640861216 Gary Yuen

    Had suspected this. I’m still curious about ghee (if one could find it without environmental toxins). And clarified butter made from milks more compatible with humans are better. Various ancient medicines (including Greek and Roman) mention many milks with different properties and tend to suggest best is of course human.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=640861216 Gary Yuen

    A new study on ghee seems to be making the rounds on some newspapers. “A spoon of ghee full of health: ‘Poses no danger to cardiac health’”. I think it’s this one.

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23041740

    If anyone could share it, that’d be great.

  • Hathor42

    Huh — they didn’t think to compare to a diet enriched with nonfatty plants.  They had four groups, but apparently couldn’t add a fifth.  Partial funding from the International Nut and Dried Fruit Council…

  • Wayne Halford

    I’m allergic to nuts. All nuts. Has there been a comparison between the health benefits in seeds as compared to nuts? I’m looking for a way to enhance my salads without using nuts of course. I do use pumpkin seeds and sunflower and am wondering if there is enough fat in the seed to help with getting all the good from the nutrients in my salads.

  • vegan minstrel

    Given the recent research showing that LDL-c (cholesterol) is not nearly as significant as LDL-p (particle size &/or concentration), couldn’t one read these results differently? That is, don’t these results show extra virgin olive oil causing a bigger drop in oxidized LDL than almonds while walnuts caused an increase in same? Almonds did cause the biggest decrease in homocysteine, but virgin olive oil was nearly as good and better than walnuts in that regard. Couldn’t one make a case that since the fat-soluble antioxidant vitamins reside in the oil of a fruit, that refined oils can be more beneficial than whole fruits in some instances? Olives are the perfect example since as Dr. Greger stated, eating a bunch of olives perhaps gives the eater too much salt.

  • vegan minstrel

    Just realized that since virgin olive oil caused an increase in apolipoprotein B while walnuts & almonds caused a decrease, the whole food does have a more beneficial effect on LDL-p than the refined oil in this case, correct?

  • Tom Lang

    Hey Dr Gregor, I am a fan of yours – lots of great info you’ve posted in many videos and I thank you for that.

    Is it my imagination or are you starting to recently omit too much important info?

    Like your post the other day about canned beans and the fact that you never mentioned the real health risk of BPA leaching out of the liners in canned food.

    Now in this post about olive oil vs walnuts or almonds to reduce the “bad” LDL cholesterol. First of all who eats dry salad with just nuts on it? I’d choke. I use 1 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil AND nuts (and much more) in my salads, Calorie wise the difference is trivial between olive oil versus nuts so I don’t understand why you would even mention that. 1 Tbsp of olive oil is about 120 calories while the equivalent weight (14g) of almonds is 80 calories and for Walnuts about 95 calories.

    Most importantly the idea that LDL cholesterol is “bad” is based on very old, outdated, science. As vegan minstrel pointed out 5 months ago in her post there is a big difference between the essential harmless “big fluffy” particles of LDL versus the high density small particle LDL which is the real “bad” type of LDL – yet you made no mention of this in this video.It’s a very important point.

    Bottom line is yes you are correct that whole foods are nearly always healthier than refined/separated portions of whole foods but a better focus for this video might have been “how to optimize the nutritional value AND flavor of your salads” because that reflects the reality of how we eat.

    Thanks.

    • http://twitter.com/MacSmiley MacSmiley

      Have you tried ever making your own salad dressings with nuts/seeds + flavored vinegar in a blender à la Dr. Fuhrman? He’s got recipes in his books and on his site. That way you’d get the full benefit of whole plant fats PLUS more palatable salads.

  • http://www.fultonmassagetherapy.com Brian Fulton

    The whole food, plant-based message in this video is a very important one. Still it is important to note that reducing fat to 10% of calories has had amazing effects on reversing heart disease, as illustrated in the Esselstyn and Ornish studies. To do this, one also has to be cognizant, and even limit whole food fats such as olives, avocados and nuts. They can be eaten, but only in moderation if one has cardiovascular concerns.