Dec. 6 (UPI) -- Hazelnuts could raise the micronutrient levels in middle-age and elderly people, new research says.
The study, published Wednesday in the Journal of Nutrition, focused on 32 people age 55 and older, who ate two cups of hazelnuts a day for 16 weeks.
Results showed increased blood concentrations of magnesium and elevated urinary levels of vitamin E.
"This is one of the first times a study of this type has focused only on older adults," Alex Michels, a researcher at Oregon State University's Linus Pauling Institute and study- co-author, said in a news release. "We wanted to fill in a piece of the puzzle -- can hazelnuts improve the nutritional status of older adults specifically?"
The researchers also noted a decrease in glucose and "bad" cholesterol, as well as an increase in magnesium.
According to an industry website, Oregon produces 99 percent of the hazelnuts in the U.S.
"All of which says that hazelnuts are good for you," Traber said. "The findings demonstrate the power of adding hazelnuts to your diet, of just changing one thing. Vitamin E and magnesium are two of the most underconsumed micronutrients in the U.S. population, and there's much more to hazelnuts than what we analyzed here. They're also a great source of healthy fats, copper and B6. People don't like taking multivitamins, but hazelnuts represent a multivitamin in a natural form."