Pecans are healthy nuts that come from the pecan tree (Carya illinoinensis), which is a tree primarily grown in North America. In fact, the name “pecan” was bestowed on this nut by North American Indians to describe the need to use a stone to crack its shell. Although they are used extensively in many recipes, pecans have also been garnering new appeal as a food that may help to keep your cholesterol levels - and heart - healthy.
Do Pecans Really Lower Cholesterol?
Studies looking at pecans have suggested that they have the ability to lower cholesterol, similar to other nuts such as walnuts and pistachios. These studies involved individuals with normal or high cholesterol levels following either a controlled diet or no specific diet at all.
Although the studies involving pecans are limited, they have suggested that pecans have the ability to lower total cholesterol levels by at least 5% and LDL cholesterol by up to 10%.
I actually had this happen to me after I read the article making these claims. I ate a hand full of fresh pecans daily for about 4 months before a doctors check up and my overall cholesterol went from 210 to 185.