Peanut Immune Study Participants Needed

Thanks for your interest in the Peanut Immune Study. This study will test the health benefits of Peanuts. The primary goal of this study is to determine whether eating Peanuts daily for 12 weeks can improve immunity and reduce cardio-metabolic risk factors such as high blood pressure and body weight.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is eligible for the study?

Investigators are looking for adults aged 18-70 years 2. Being able to commute to Loma Linda University 3. Not taking medication or supplements that affect immunity. Exclusion Criteria: 1. Intolerance or allergy to Peanuts 2. Regular intake of peanuts and/or other nuts (>3 ounces/week) 3. Immune system insufficiency or disease 4. Using immune boosting supplements 5. Exposure to antibiotics and corticoids immediately prior to study 6. Uncontrolled chronic diseases, morbid obesity and relevant psychiatric illness, including major depression will not be included in the study 7. Flu vaccination or covid booster within past 3 months

What is expected of participants?

Participants must be willing to commit for a total duration of 12 weeks and to attend four office visits. During this time, participants are expected to attend all scheduled meetings and visits. Participants must be equally willing to consume peanuts or abstain from peanuts and other nuts, while continuing their usual diet and other routines or lifestyle habits. Participants are expected to visit the clinic 4 times during the study (about once a month). At these visits, peanuts will be provided based on the group you are randomized to (You will be randomly assigned to either group 1: Peanuts including peanut butter ( 2 ounces) or group 2: continue with your habitual diet and abstain from peanuts and other nuts), based using a random number table). Blood pressure and body composition measurements which means measuring your weight, body fat mass and muscle mass using an InBody machine will be done, once at the baseline clinic visit, and week 12 visit by a trained clinician. During two of these visits participants will be fasting (this means that you must have nothing to eat and drink except water after 8 p.m. the evening before) to provide blood samples. About 3 tablespoons of blood will be collected during the blood draw visits. The purpose of the blood test is to measure the number of different type of white blood cells as well as the level of antibodies present in your blood. In case the laboratory finds any abnormalities in your blood cell numbers, we will provide you with the results that you can share with your primary care provider. You will be provided a diary to track any changes in your medication, food, exercise, supplements and a upper respiratory tract symptom tracking booklet if you experience any flu like symptoms, you will fill it out every two weeks to note any upper respiratory tract infection, if you don’t have any symptoms of upper respiratory tract infections then you will mark a no, if you do experience any symptoms then you will mark yes and fill out the questionnaire.

How can I participate?

You can let us know if you are interested in the study by any of the following 2 ways:

  1. Send us an email to
  2. Call us at 909-558-8382 from 9am to 3pm

Please let us know the days and the time you will be available to take calls.

How long will the study last?

The study will last for 12 weeks (3 months) from start to finish.

Will it cost me anything?

There is NO cost to the participants for any of the study-associated intervention or tests.


The committee at Loma Linda University that reviews human studies (Institutional Review Board) has determined that participating in this study could expose you to minimal risk. Possible discomfort may result from the blood drawings. This includes slight pain and minor bleeding or bruising at the point of needle insertion. Breach of confidentiality is also a potential risk during the study, which will be minimized by coding the research records, keep research records secure in a locked office or on a password protected computer. Only authorized personnel will be allowed to access the study data. Risks also include allergic reactions to Peanuts. Signs and symptoms of the allergic reaction are hives, redness or swelling, iching or tingling around mouth and throat, digestive problems, tightening of throat and shortness of breath.


You may or may not benefit personally from the intervention. However, it is expected that this study will increase knowledge about the effect of peanuts on immunity and reduce cardio-metabolic risk factors such as high blood pressure and body weight . Therefore, by participating you will be helping us gain a deeper understanding of the biological functions of peanuts and contributing towards a lasting benefit for humanity.


Your results from a variety of tests will be provided to you at the completion of the study. These test results will give you valuable information about different aspects of your health and will be worthwhile to you. Test results of the blood work related to immune cells will be shared with you if there are abnormalities detected so you can follow it up with your primary care provider.


Participants will receive $200 as compensation at the end of the study, upon successful completion of all study procedures.

Voluntary Participation

Participation in this study is voluntary. Your decision on whether to participate in or withdraw at any time from the study will not affect your ongoing medical care or relationship to your doctors and will not involve any penalty or loss of benefits to which you are otherwise entitled.

Required Dates

Dates will be provided soon.

Who is conducting the study?

This study is one of the many dietary studies conducted by a team of nutrition researchers at Loma Linda University. The protocol of Peanut Immune Study is approved by Institutional Review Board (IRB), which is the independent committee of physicians and public health professionals, to make sure that there is no harm toward participants and possible benefits, not only for participants, but also for others in the future.

Joan Sabate, MD, DrPH

Joan Sabate, MD, DrPH


Dr. Joan Sabate has a doctoral degree in public health nutrition, and has worked in the area of Environmental Nutrition for over 10 years. He has a broad, multidisciplinary background including nutrition, epidemiology, and statistics. He was Chair of the nutrition department at Loma Linda University for 17 years and led many research projects to completion. Currently, Joan is the co-Director of the Environmental Nutrition research program at Loma Linda University.

Sujatha Rajaram, PhD

Sujatha Rajaram, PhD


Dr. Sujatha Rajaram, is a Professor of Nutrition at Loma Linda University School of Public Health. She is a Co-Investigator for the Mango Cardiometabolic Study. She has contributed significantly to the research activities at the Center for Nutrition, Healthy Lifestyle and Disease Prevention. She has served as both principal investigator and co-investigator on several clinical trials, specifically feeding studies on tree nuts, and plant omega-3 fatty acids with respect to cardiometabolic disease outcomes and healthy aging.

Celine Heskey, DrPH, MS, RDN

Celine Heskey, DrPH, MS, RDN

Principal Investigator

Dr. Heskey is an Associate Professor of Nutrition, and currently the program director of the MPH Nutrition program at Loma Linda University. She completed her BS degree in Dietetics and MS degree in Human Nutrition at Andrews University, and her DrPH in Nutrition at Loma Linda University. She has prior experience working as a clinical dietitian (Registered Dietitian Nutritionist) at Advent Health-Altamonte and Loma Linda University Medical Center. Her research interests include nutrition epidemiology, and clinical trials examining the effects of various nutrients and foods (including n-3 fatty acids, nuts, avocado, and mango) on adiposity and cardiometabolic health, including risk factors for heart disease and diabetes.

Amandeep Wright, MPH

Amandeep Wright, MPH

Research Manager

Amandeep Kaur is a Research Manager at the Loma Linda University School of Public Health. She did her Master’s in Public Health at SPH. She has been working with the PI of the Mango Cardiovascular Study and the nutrition research team for the past five years. She has expertise in coordinating and managing the conduct of clinical trials. She has been involved with larger clinical trials like the Habitual Diet and Avocado Trail, which was a multi-center trial (UCLA, Tufts University, Penn State and Loma Linda University) with over a 1000 participants .She was the main coordinator for the Loma Linda site during the trial. Her role in Mango Cardiovascular Study will include among other things, the coordination of recruitment and selection of participants, clinic visits, and data collection and management.

Rawiwan Sirirat, DrPH

Rawiwan Sirirat, DrPH

Research Associate

Dr. Rawiwan Sirirat is a research associate at Nutrition Research Center. She is a Registered Dietitian with doctoral degree of public health in Nutrition. Her main interest is in nutrition epidemiology. Dr. Sirirat has accumulated research experience over the years via multiple clinical trials as well as a large cohort study. Her experiences include nutrition data collections, quality control of the data as well as nutrition data management. She is also well acquainted with laboratory analyses of nutrition biomarkers, bio specimen processing and handling. She will be primarily involved in data and bio specimen collection and handling in this study.

Socorro Carranza, MPH, RDN, CDCES

Socorro Carranza, MPH, RDN, CDCES


Socorro Carranza is currently a doctoral student in nutrition at Loma Linda University School of Public Health. Socorro obtained her master's degree in public health nutrition from LLU and has been working as a registered dietitian nutritionist for almost 20 years, specializing in diabetes and weight management. She is the founder of Peak Nutrition Academy and is a part-time college nutrition instructor.