Looking for a pick-me-up heading into the weekend? Grab a handful of nuts – walnuts, to be precise.

A new study from University of New Mexico nutrition professor Peter Pribis has found that healthy young men who consume walnuts (which are rich in vitamin B, fiber, omega-3 fatty acids) on the daily may experience considerable mood improvement.

Over the course of eight weeks, Pribis conducted a randomized double-blind and placebo-controlled cross-over feeding trial with walnuts.

The study’s 64 participants were (who were between the ages of 18 and 25 and spanned numerous ethnic groups) were asked to eat three slices of banana bread every day for 16 weeks. For half of that time, the banana bread contained finely ground, imperceptible walnuts.

"There was a meaningful, 28 percent improvement of mood in young men [when walnuts were involved]," Pribis told EurekAlert!, adding that researchers noted no mood improvement in women for reasons unknown.

In terms of healthy young men, mood improvement after eating walnuts was particularly noticeable.  

"In the past, studies on walnuts have shown beneficial effects on many health outcomes like heart disease, diabetes and obesity," Pribis said. "Our study was different because we focused on cognition, and in this controlled randomized trial (CRT) we measured mood outcomes in males and females."

h/t Medical Daily.