The Effects of Tree Nut and Peanut Consumption on Energy Compensation and Energy Expenditure: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

Year Published: 2023


Adv Nutr


Cassandra J. Nikodijevic 1 2, Yasmine C. Probst 1 2, Sze-Yen Tan 3, Elizabeth P. Neale 1 2


Nut consumption is not associated with a higher body weight, and potential energy-regulating mechanisms may include a reduced subsequent energy intake and increased EE. The aim of this study was to examine the effect of tree nut and peanut consumption on energy intake, compensation, and expenditure. PubMed, MEDLINE, CINAHL, Cochrane, and Embase databases were searched from inception to June 2, 2021. Human studies with adults aged ≥18 y older were included. Energy intake and compensation studies were restricted to acute effects (intervention duration of ≤24 h), whereas intervention duration was not limited for EE studies. Random effects meta-analyses were conducted to explore weighted mean differences in REE.

Key Findings

Key Findings: Twenty-eight articles from 27 studies (16 energy intake studies, 10 EE studies, and 1 study investigating both) with 1121 participants were included in this review, with a variety of nut types addressed (almonds, Brazil nuts, cashews, chestnuts, hazelnuts, peanuts, pistachios, walnuts, and mixed nuts). Energy compensation occurred after nut-containing loads (range: −280.5% to +176.4%) and the degree of compensation varied depending on the form (whole and chopped) and how they were consumed (alone and within a meal). The meta-analyses identified a nonsignificant increase in REE associated with nut consumption (weighted mean difference: 28.6 kcal/d; 95% CI: −10.7, 67.8 kcal/d). This study provided support for energy compensation as a potential mechanism for a lack of association between nut consumption and body weight, whereas no evidence was found for EE as an energy-regulating mechanism of nuts.