Is a Handful an Effective Way to Guide Nut Recommendations?

Year Published: 2021


Int J Environ Res Public Health


Rachel Brown, Andrew R Gray, Mei Gee Chua, Lara Ware, Alex Chisholm, Siew Ling Tey


"Dietary guidelines recommend consuming 30 g of nuts per day to reduce the risk of chronic disease. A 'handful' is commonly used to guide consumers. Research is lacking on how this translates into actual gram amounts. This study quantified the grams of nuts represented by different portion size measures, including a 'handful' and '30 g serving' among 120 participants. Each participant was randomised to a sequence where they received three of six different nut types (from almonds, cashews, hazelnuts, macadamias, peanuts, and walnuts) and were instructed to take a: 'usual serving', 'handful', 'small handful', 'large handful', and '30 g serving' of each."

Key Findings

Key Findings: " Eighty-three percent of portions chosen were at least 80% of the recommended 30 g intake when participants were asked to take a 'handful', compared to 63% for the '30 g serving'. It appears a 'handful' can be used as a practical tool to guide recommended nut intakes, and increases the amount selected compared to instructions to take a '30 g serving'."