Prunes May Reduce Appetite and Calorie Consumption: Study

According to a new study conducted by the University of Liverpool, England, it has been found that the intake of prunes can help control appetite and reduce overall caloric consumption and serve as a perfect snack to keep holiday cravings at bay. As the holiday season progresses, people can now consider opting for a handful of prunes to carry their health goals to 2022.The study was published in the ‘Nutrition Bulletin Journal’ and was carried out in two phases.

In the first phase, researchers evaluated satiety, hunger, and caloric intake among participants who ate a snack of prunes, raisins, or jelly-bean-like candies, all of which were similar in calories. Participants that consumed prunes had the fewest calories overall at subsequent meals, according to the researchers. Reduced appetite, enhanced satiety, and a stronger perceived ability to consume less food at subsequent meals were also noted by prune snackers.

In the second phase, researchers concentrated their efforts on weight loss. Researchers segregated participants into two groups – those who followed a 12-week weight loss programme including prunes as a snack, and others who followed the same programme but just received advice on healthy snacking. Despite the fact that there were no statistically significant differences in terms of weight loss between the two groups, the prune focus-group lost more weight on average than the group that merely got healthy snacking advice. Additionally, those who ate prunes reported higher degrees of pleasure and comfort in sticking to the weight-loss plan.

This study provides an interesting take on health as prunes can be used as a fiber-rich laxative. But, like sultanas and raisins, they’re a dried fruit, and their sugar content leads them to be candied which can be a concern for people with diabetes. However, Professor Jason C G Halford, University of Leeds and President of the European Association for the Study of Obesity (EASO), who was part of the research team, said, “These studies demonstrate that dried fruit can both produce satiety and be incorporated into diet during weight management.” He also stated that this was the first study to show that eating prunes as part of a weight-reduction regimen resulted in both weight loss and no ill effects.

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