Walnuts & Cholesterol
Metabolic Health
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Can Walnuts Lower Cholesterol?

Walnuts are high in folate, vitamin E, and healthy fats. Even though they are heavy in calories, they do not appear to be contributing to weight gain. 

Several studies have been conducted to evaluate whether eating walnuts regularly will assist patients at risk of diabetes regulate their cholesterol and blood sugar levels.

High cholesterol levels, particularly high LDL cholesterol levels, raise the risk of cardiovascular disease, stroke, and other health problems. Researchers discovered that consuming walnuts every day may improve cholesterol levels without raising body weight.

Walnuts are packed with omega-3 fatty acids or also known as alpha-linolenic acid, which has been found to improve cardiovascular health.

Previous research has linked nuts in general, and walnuts intake specifically, to decreased incidence of heart disease and stroke. One explanation is that they reduce LDL cholesterol levels, plus we now have another that walnuts help to enhance the particle quality of LDL particles.

Cholesterol, Heart Health, And in Walnuts

Consuming walnuts as a component of a well-balanced diet may reduce the likelihood of heart disease, the world's most prevalent cause of death. According to the experts, walnuts might be a helpful natural remedy for lowering cholesterol and maintaining heart health. Let's look at it! They are indeed high in alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), a plant-based omega-3 fatty acid. Per ounce, walnuts provide 2.5 grams of ALA. Omega-3 fatty acids have been shown in studies to reduce the inflammatory marker C-reactive protein (CRP) in individuals who have excessive cholesterol.

Inflammation is a key factor in the onset of atherosclerosis. 

  • Walnuts aid in the maintenance of good cholesterol levels and the reduction of blood pressure, both of which are important heart disease risk factors.
  • Walnuts may reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke when consumed as part of a Mediterranean diet, a diet that is rich in fish, veggies, fruits, healthy grains, olive oil and nuts, legumes, and beans.
  • A recent study found that a Mediterranean diet combined with extra-virgin olive oil or nuts, particularly walnuts, decreased the frequency of major cardiac events in those at high cardiovascular risk.
  • Eating walnuts everyday reduces people's overall and LDL (bad) cholesterol levels considerably. Furthermore, regardless of whether they lowered other calories, their weight stayed consistent. Moreover, when they ate walnuts, their general diets improved.

Improved Lipid Profiles

A meta-analysis of 13 randomized controlled studies found that consuming walnuts was related to substantial decreases in total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and triglycerides, but not with differences in high-density lipoprotein cholesterol. Individuals who were overweight or obese, as well as those who had comorbidities, experienced significant changes in their lipid profiles after consuming walnuts, and a longer trial length was linked with even greater benefits.

According to the findings of the above-mentioned meta-analysis, there is evidence that eating walnuts may be connected with better lipid profiles. It should be observed that the findings of this meta-analysis may be biased due to extra variables involved, and there was considerable variation for certain outcomes of relevance. Furthermore, take in mind that the association between walnut consumption and better lipid profiles might not be the same for all people, since age, gender, diet, and lifestyle can all impact an individual's lipid profile.

Advantages of eating Walnuts for People with Diabetes

Walnuts are a kind of tree nut that has been found to offer potential diabetic health advantages. Diabetes is a chronic disorder defined by excessive blood sugar levels (glucose), which can arise whenever the body is not able to make or use insulin properly. One of the possible benefits of walnut consumption for people with diabetes is that it may assist in improving blood sugar management and insulin sensitivity. 

Consuming walnuts may also help minimize the chance of getting diabetes or promote blood sugar management in those with prediabetes, according to one research. In addition to their possible impact on blood sugar management, walnuts may also benefit the lipid profile and blood pressure of diabetics. Elevated levels of these lipids are linked to a higher risk of heart disease, a frequent diabetic consequence. Walnuts are also high in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which might also decrease blood pressure and lower the risk of heart disease.

It is important to note that the possible advantages of walnut consumption for persons with diabetes may differ depending on the individual as well as other aspects like the type of diabetes and the person 's general diet and lifestyle. Here are some advantages of walnuts:

  1. Walnuts have fiber, protein, and healthy fats.
  2. They contain antioxidants and omega-3s.
  3. Walnuts may lower blood pressure and improve brain function.
  4. They may reduce cancer risk.
  5. Walnuts are convenient and versatile.
  6. They may improve diet quality and support weight management.
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Diabetes & Lipid Profile

Diabetes and lipid profiles are linked since high levels of certain lipids, like cholesterol and triglycerides, raise the likelihood of developing diabetes and some other health issues. Diabetes is a chronic disorder that arises when the body's cells are not able to adequately utilize glucose, a form of sugar. This can result in excessive blood glucose levels, which can harm blood vessels including organs over time.

A lipid profile is a collection of tests that assess the amounts of various kinds of lipids, or fats, in the blood. These tests can aid in determining the likelihood of getting heart disease or other health issues. Elevated levels of certain lipids, including low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, can promote the formation of plaque in blood vessels, leading to the development of diabetes and other health issues. Plaque is a substance composed of cholesterol, calcium, and other ingredients that can block arteries and raise the chance of a heart attack and stroke.

High levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, sometimes known as "good" cholesterol, on the other hand, can assist to prevent the development of diabetes and heart disease by eliminating LDL cholesterol from the bloodstream and avoiding plaque build-up in the arteries.

People with diabetes must regulate their lipid levels in addition to their level of blood glucose to lower their risk of complications. This may entail adopting lifestyle changes, like eating a nutritious diet, exercising regularly, and taking medication if necessary.

Benefits of Walnut Oil for people with Type 2 Diabetes

Here are five essential aspects regarding walnut oil's possible advantages for persons with type 2 diabetes:

  1. Walnut oil is high in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which may aid with blood sugar regulation.
  2. It has a high concentration of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), an omega-3 fatty acid that has been demonstrated to increase insulin sensitivity.
  3. Walnut oil may aid in the reduction of inflammation, which is a prevalent issue in patients with Type 2 diabetes.
  4. It contains antioxidants such as vitamin E and other polyphenols, which might also help protect against oxidative stress..
  5. Despite walnut oil may have potential advantages for persons with type 2 diabetes, it's crucial to consume it in moderation as part of a balanced diet, and to consult with a healthcare expert about how it can fit into your comprehensive diabetes management strategy.

Risks of Overconsumption of Walnuts

Consuming walnuts in moderation as part of a balanced diet is generally considered safe and can give several health advantages. However, like with any meal, consuming too much of these might result in certain potential hazards and severe health repercussions. Walnut overconsumption could pose the following risks:

  • Weight gain 

Because walnuts are heavy in calories and fat, eating too many of them might lead to weight gain if not balanced with physical exercise and a nutritious diet.

  • Digestive problems 

Consuming a significant number of walnuts at once or on an empty stomach can induce digestive problems such as bloating, gas, and diarrhea in some people.

  • Allergic reactions

Many people are allergic to walnuts and may develop adverse responses after ingesting them. Hives, itching, swelling, trouble breathing, and anaphylaxis are all symptoms of walnut allergy.

  • Interference with medications

Walnuts contain chemicals that may interfere with some medications, including beta blockers and blood pressure pills. If you're taking any drugs, you should consult with your doctor about potential drug interactions.

  • Nutrient imbalances

Walnuts are a wonderful source of nutrients including healthy fats, protein, and numerous vitamins and minerals, but they are not a comprehensive source of nourishment. A diet heavy in walnuts may induce a nutritional imbalance and may lead to deficits in other key nutrients.

  • High-cost

Walnuts are typically more costly than other varieties of nuts, and eating a lot of them on a daily basis may be too pricey for some individuals. This might result in nutritional imbalances or inadequacies due to a lack of diversity in the diet.

  • Excessive intake of polyunsaturated fats

Walnuts are high in polyunsaturated fats, which may be helpful in moderation, but eating too much of them might cause an imbalance in the types of lipids in the diet, thus increasing the risk of various health problems. It is critical to consume a range of meals in moderation rather than relying on a single item as a primary source of nutrients.

Ways to include Walnuts in the Diet

Here are ten wonderful ways to incorporate walnuts into your diet:

  1. For a crunchy and nutritional boost, add chopped or whole walnuts to salads, yogurt, or oatmeal.
  2. Make your granola by combining walnuts, oats, and your favorite dried fruit.
  3. Ground walnuts can be used in place of breadcrumbs in meatballs, meatloaf, or chicken nuggets.
  4. To add flavor and crunch to roasted veggies, sprinkle with chopped walnuts.
  5. Make a batch of no-bake walnut energy bars for an on-the-go snack.
  6. Crush a handful of walnuts and mix them into your favorite baked items, such as muffins, cookies, or bread.
  7. Spread walnut butter over toast or use it as a fruit dip.
  8. Serve walnuts as a topping for pizza or spaghetti.
  9. For an added protein boost, add walnuts to smoothies or protein shakes.
  10. Roast whole walnuts and store them for snacking or topping salads and other foods.


Because of their high quantities of polyunsaturated fatty acids and plant sterols, walnuts may help decrease cholesterol levels. However, before making any dietary modifications, consult with a healthcare practitioner. To adequately lower cholesterol levels and minimize the risk of heart disease, it is also necessary to adopt other lifestyle modifications such as obtaining regular physical exercise and keeping a healthy weight.


Are walnuts good for high cholesterol?

Walnuts may benefit patients with high cholesterol since they contain polyunsaturated fats, notably Omega-3 fatty acids, and antioxidants, which may help decrease cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart disease.

Furthermore, they are high in fiber, which can aid in cholesterol reduction by binding to and eliminating cholesterol from the body. To assist regulate cholesterol levels, it is also vital to keep a balanced diet and lifestyle in general.

How many walnuts should you eat a day for cholesterol?

People with cholesterol can eat 3-4 walnuts everyday. The study, published in the American Heart Association journal Circulation, discovered that eating about half a cup of walnuts every day for two years reduced LDL, or "bad," cholesterol levels as well as the number of LDL particles linked to cardiovascular disease risk.

How long does it take for walnuts to lower cholesterol?

Eating walnuts may help decrease cholesterol levels, but the specific time frame depends on a variety of factors, such as the individual's diet, lifestyle, and overall health. According to some research, eating a diet high in walnuts can lower cholesterol levels in as little as four weeks.

Which is better to lower cholesterol: walnuts or almonds?

Almonds and walnuts are both healthy alternatives for decreasing cholesterol. Which is better relies entirely on your preferences and dietary requirements. Almonds and walnuts may both be included in a balanced diet to help decrease cholesterol and enhance heart health. It's crucial to remember that nuts are heavy in calories and should be eaten in moderation as part of a healthy diet.


  • https://www.heart.org/en/news/2021/08/30/eating-walnuts-every-day-could-lower-bad-cholesterol-in-older-adults
  • https://news.llu.edu/research/consuming-walnuts-can-lower-cholesterol-reduce-risk-for-heart-disease
  • https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/260288#diabetes


This website's content is provided only for educational reasons and is not meant to be a replacement for professional medical advice. Due to individual differences, the reader should contact their physician to decide whether the material is applicable to their case.