There are so many layers to the macadamia story. From cooking, health and wellbeing to people, gift ideas and macadamia country, there’s a lot to discover about this extraordinary Australian nut. Spend a little time exploring our latest stories. You’ll be amazed at what you find!

Home » Stories » Health and wellbeing » International Expert Presents Strong Evidence Challenging Misconceptions About Nuts and Weight

International Expert Presents Strong Evidence Challenging Misconceptions About Nuts and Weight

The evidence that challenges common misconceptions about nuts and weight will be presented by an international nutrition expert at tonight’s opening of the Dietitians Association of Australian (DAA) 32nd National Conference in Perth (13-16 May).

Nuts are high in fat and energy dense and as a result are often restricted in diets to manage weight and diabetes risk.

International authority on hunger, satiety and energy balance, and highly-awarded nutrition researcher Distinguished Professor Richard Mattes said there was a strong body of evidence challenging these concerns.

“Epidemiological trials reveal no association or an inverse association between the frequency of nut consumption and weight gain, BMI or diabetes risk,” said keynote speaker Prof. Mattes, from Purdue University, USA.

“While, clinical trials document that the inclusion of a moderate portion of nuts, up to 40 grams a day does not pose a risk for weight gain.

“Nuts may also be especially useful as a snack because they provide a wide range of nutrients while having little impact on daily energy intake.”

In addition to reviewing the research on nuts and weight, Prof. Mattes will present the three key reasons that nuts have a limited impact on energy balance:

· High satiety: Nuts are highly satiating suppressing both hunger and the desire to eat in the absence of hunger. This leads to strong dietary compensation where people eat less throughout the day. The reduction in eating at subsequent meals or snacks accounts for about two-thirds to three-quarters of the kilojoules a portion of nuts provides,
· Inefficient energy absorption: The kilojoules that nuts contain are not efficiently absorbed. Due to the resistance of the cells walls of nuts to digestion, the fat they contain is not readily accessible, so up to 20% of the energy is excreted through stools,
· Increased resting metabolic rate: Long-term nut consumption is associated with a 5-10% elevation of resting energy expenditure.

The Australia Health Survey 2011-13 revealed 2.3 million Australians aged 15 years and over reported being on a diet to lose weight or for health reasons1. One in four (27.5 per cent) Australian adults is obese and a further 35
per cent overweight, while 5.1 per cent have diabetes (i).

In addition to looking at weight, Prof Mattes’ presentation will review the evidence supporting a role for nuts in diabetes management, specifically:

· How the fat, fibre and polyphenol content of nuts reduce blood glucose levels following meals
· The association between regular nut consumption and lower markers of insulin production.

Prof Mattes will also present advance findings from his new, yet to be published, research, examining the brain’s pleasure response to eating nuts to determine if they are resistant to the ‘monotony effect’.

**Interview Opportunities**
Professor Richard Mattes will be presenting a keynote address at the Dietitians Association of Australian (DAA) 32nd National Conference on Wednesday, 13 May 2015
Presentation Time: 7.15pm – 8.00pm
Location: Crown Perth Conference Centre, Great Eastern Highway, Burswood Western Australia.
Interviews: Prof. Mattes will be available for interview in advance of his presentation from (10am-12pm), Wednesday, 13 May 2015.
For interviews please contact Sonya Rogers at Bite Communications on (02) 9977 8195 or 0435 110 670 Maree Hall, Dietitians Association of Australia, on 0408 482 581

The Dietitians Association of Australia National Conference is being held from 13-16 May 2015 at the Crown Perth Conference Centre. For more information and program details, visit: and follow us on Twitter:

Press passes can be made available for interested media (including Australian-based journalists from print, radio, television and online media outlets) to attend sessions at the conference. To request a press pass, please contact
Maree Hall 0408 482 581.

Biography: Distinguished Prof. Richard Mattes MPH, PhD, RD
Prof. Mattes is a Distinguished Professor of Nutrition Science at Purdue University, Adjunct Associate Professor of Medicine at the Indiana University School of Medicine and Affiliated Scientist at the Monell Chemical Senses
Center. His research focuses on the areas of hunger and satiety, regulation of food intake in humans, food preferences, human cephalic phase responses, and taste and smell. At Purdue University, Prof. Mattes is the Director of the University Public Health Program and the Ingestive Behavior Research Center. He also holds numerous external responsibilities including Associate Editor of American Journal of Clinical Nutrition; member of the editorial board of Chemosensory Perception, Ear, Nose and Throat Journal and Flavour. He has received multiple awards, most recently the Babcock-Hart Award from the Institute of Food Technologists and has authored more than 230 publications.

Note Nuts for Life – a health education program funded by the Australian Tree Nut Industry and Horticulture Innovation Australia provided the Dietitians Association of Australia with funds for a speaker sponsorship to enable Prof Mattes’ travel to Australia but does not fund Prof Mattes’ research in any way.

(i) ABS 2014 Australian Health Survey 2011-13 Biomedical results

Related Stories

Why macadamia oil is a true kitchen all rounder With a wonderfully smooth, buttery flavour, macadamia oil is a true kitchen all rounder.  You might have heard advice that… Read More
Why we’re turning away from diet culture (and learning how to eat instead) Spoiler: We are starting to see food as an ally not an enemy of good health. Diet culture. You may… Read More
Five signs you need more macadamias in your life Tired? Stressed? Always hungry? Eating more macadamias might be the answer! What we eat has a huge influence on how… Read More
Why we love macadamias in winter The versatility and rich flavour of macadamias makes them perfect for enhancing warming winter meals, providing both texture and flavour… Read More

Get monthly emails about all things macadamias. Yum!

Just pop your details

down here

Contact us

Sorry for interrupting, this website uses cookies to improve your user experience. Continuing to use our site means we’ll assume you’re ok with this.