Nuts are rich sources of polyphenolic compounds and nutrients, which have antioxidant capacity. To assess the acute effect of treatment diet (75% of energy from nuts (walnut or almond) and control diet (habitual diet with no nut consumption) in healthy subjects on plasma total phenol content, antioxidant capacity and plasma lipid peroxidation. Thirteen subjects participated in the crossover design study. After an overnight fast, walnut, almond and a control diet, in form of smoothies, were consumed by the study subjects. Each subject participated on three occasions one week apart, consuming one of the smoothies each time. Blood samples were obtained at intervals up to 3.5h after consumption of the smoothies. Results showed that within 90 minutes of consumption of the walnut and almond, there was a significant increase in plasma total phenol content. Antioxidant capacity of plasma determined by the ferric reducing capacity of plasma (FRAP) and oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC) reached its highest point at 150 min post-consumption of nut diet. Also, a gradual reduction in the susceptibility of plasma to lipid peroxidation was observed 90 minutes after nut diets. No changes were observed following consumption of control diet. We concluded that consumption of nuts raises total phenol concentration, enhances the antioxidant capacity of plasma, and reduces plasma lipid peroxidation. These findings conclude that in addition to the favorable lipid profile of nuts, their phenolic content must now be considered as a potential contributor to the apparent antithrombic, antioxidant, anti-ischemic effects as well.




School of Public Health

First Advisor

Ella H. Haddad

Second Advisor

Sujatha Rajaram

Third Advisor

Joan Sabate

Degree Name

Doctor of Public Health (DrPH)

Degree Level


Year Degree Awarded


Date (Title Page)




Library of Congress/MESH Subject Headings

Diet; Nutrition; Antioxidants -- metabolism; Dietary Fats, Unsaturated -- blood; Lipids -- metabolism; Cardiovascular Diseases -- prevention and control; Neoplasms -- prevention and control.



Page Count

x; 112

Digital Format


Digital Publisher

Loma Linda University Libraries

Usage Rights

This title appears here courtesy of the author, who has granted Loma Linda University a limited, non-exclusive right to make this publication available to the public. The author retains all other copyrights.


Loma Linda University Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Collection Website



Loma Linda University. Del E. Webb Memorial Library. University Archives