Eating handful of nuts a day can keep the doctor away

A handful of nuts a day can help to keep the doctor - and the undertaker - away, research has shown.

Being nuts about nuts reduced the risk of heart disease by nearly 30%, the risk of cancer by 15%, and the risk of premature death by 22%. The same amount of nuts - equivalent to a handful - was also associated with a halving of the risk of dying from a respiratory disease. Diabetes risk was cut by nearly 40%.

Study co-author Dagfinn Aune, from Imperial College London, said: “In nutritional studies, so far much of the research has been on the big killers such as heart diseases, stroke and cancer, but now we're starting to see data for other diseases."