How We Grow

2020 Jan/Feb How We Grow

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AROUND THE WORLD 14 weight management, gut health, diabetes and now skin health. These studies have taken place around the world and resulted in approximately 175 scientific publications. While the nutrient-rich profile of almonds has long been known to the Almond Board and consumers, this pilot study sought to explore an entirely new aspect of almonds' contribution to skin health, going beyond general skin health to an actual reduction in wrinkle width and severity. A serving of almonds provides key nutrients that are linked to skin health, including zinc (0.9 mg), riboflavin (0.3 mg) and the essential fatty acid linoleic acid (3.5 g). Almonds are also rich in the antioxidant vitamin E, offering 50% of daily recommended needs. "The skin health benefits of almond consumption have long been known in Ayurveda. Developed over 5,000 years ago in India, this ancient form of Ayurvedic medicine is one of the world's oldest holistic healing systems. It promotes the balance of a healthy mind, spirit and body, and functions on the belief that the three are linked. It is this interconnectivity that led Ayurvedic practitioners to believe that what you eat can impact the appearance of skin, hair and nails," said Swati Kalgaonkar, associate director of Nutrition Research at the Almond Board. "This pilot study, using modern clinical science, is the first small step towards a giant leap of using food not only in your dietary regimen but also in your beauty routine," said Kalgaonkar. Sivamani's promising new research has already inspired a larger and longer-term follow-up study with his research team at UC Davis. The follow-up study will include a larger group of postmenopausal women and be extended from 16 weeks to 24 weeks. In addition to assessing measures of wrinkle width and severity, Sivamani's follow-up trial will also assess changes in the skin's microbiome: Like the gut, the skin's surface has its own ecology, hosting an abundance of microorganisms. This may be impacted by dietary intake and warrants investigation. Another newly funded study will expand ABC's skin research to include Asian skin types. Healthy Asian-American women ages 35–50 will be recruited to participate in this 12-week study under the direction of Dr. Zhaoping Li at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). The investigation will assess the impact of daily almond snacking on skin inflammation and aging in addition to radiance (skin "glow"), elasticity, sebum and hydration. "Sivmani's study has provided us with a positive beginning and guidance to pursue further detailed research in the areas of skin health and beauty," affirmed Goshgarian. As ABC expands its research in the areas of almond consumption and skin health, the Almond Board's Global Marketing team will share the results with consumers and food and health professionals. For the time being, though, if you have ever wondered how your almond-growing grandfather or grandmother aged so well, look no further than the nut they grew and snacked on daily – all as part of a healthy diet, of course. Global Marketing Team Shares Results in 11 Key Markets Research-based communications and a solid foundation in nutrition science has long anchored the Almond Board's global public relations and marketing programs. Sivamani's study, in particular, bears global relevance as diet as a means of promoting skin health is of growing interest to consumers around the world who are looking for natural options for healthy aging. ABC has been in lockstep with this consumer trend and growing interest among health professionals, and once the study's results were published the Almond Board's Global Marketing team worked quickly to share the emerging research with its 11 key markets. Each marketing region – from South Korea to the UK – pitched health and beauty media outlets with the study's results, giving ABC's marketing teams an opportunity to reach new audiences with information about the benefits of almonds. Here are a few highlights from ABC's efforts: f ABC's EU team sent media members a beauty-focused mailer highlighting almonds as a food to consume in line with the beauty-from-the-inside-out trend. The team also reached health professionals through a study spotlight feature article in the EU's Nutrition Bulletin. f In the US, the ABC team distributed almond beauty gift bags to registered dietitian advocates at the US Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The team also hosted a satellite media tour featuring registered dietitian Keri Gans. f In the US and Mexico, through paid digital and social communications across Facebook, Instagram, Accuweather, Pandora and more, the team is continuing to conduct outreach to inform consumers of this emerging research.

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