Pistachio – Health Benefits, Nutrition, Facts

Pistachios are one of the most commonly consumed nuts as a popular snack, as well as an ingredient in sweets, desserts and other dishes. They are also consumed as a healthy snack as they not only control body weight but also reduce the risk of heart problems. Pistachios also contain fewer calories as compared to other nuts, and are rich in potassium and vitamin K per serving. One ounce of dry and roasted pistachios have 160 calories, only 2 gram saturated fat, about 5 grams of protein, 4 grams of fiber and 12 grams of good fat. Almost one fourth of the daily requirement of vitamin B-6 and about 15 percent of the daily requirement of thiamine as well as 10 percent of phosphorus and magnesium is served by an ounce of pistachios. Other benefits in details could be seen as follows:

Healthy heart

Consuming pistachios as a healthy snack reduces the cholesterol. According to a research done in 2008 by “American Journal of Clinical Nutrition” people who had a diet of moderate calories where pistachio intake contributed from 10 to 20 percent of their total calorie count for almost a month found their cholesterol levels dropping. l-arginine, that gives more flexibility to the linings of the arteries is also found in Pistachios. There are also minimum chances of developing blood clots that could further prevent a heart attack. The Vitamin E in pistachios helps preventing the plaguing of the arteries.

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Managing weight

A lot of health experts and dieticians recommend snacking on pistachios for a healthier substitute. The fibrous nature of pistachios makes a person feel full and balances the calories in a convenient portion. According to a research done in 2010 by the “Journal of the American College of Nutrition” it was found that people who had 250 calories in the form of pistachios for 3 months had a lower body mass indexes and triglyceride level as compared to the ones consuming pretzels for making 220 calories. Although the fat in pistachios is mostly the healthy as well as the unsaturated type, they still have a decent amount of calories so you it is very important to eat them in moderation, especially when losing weight. Buying shelled pistachios is always helpful as they prevent too much consumption for the ordeal of shelling them. Snacking on unsalted pistachios is also important as controlling salt intake is essential while managing weight.

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Other health benefits of Pistachios

  1. Pistachios are not only delicious tree nuts but are also known for being a wholesome nutrition package.
  2. If consumed moderately with other nuts such as almonds, cashews, and walnuts it could be an excellent source of proteins, minerals and unsaturated fat, especially for the ones living in dry regions and among southern, central and western Asian population.
  3. Pistachios are also an excellent source of energy; a 100 gram of nuts consists of 550 calories. Also they are rich in mono-unsaturated fatty acids such as oleic acid and they are also an excellent source of antioxidants.
  4. Consuming pistachios on a regular basis in the daily diet is helpful in lowering not only the total cholesterol but also bad LDL cholesterol. It also increases the good HDL cholesterol level in the blood.
  5. An interesting example could be the Mediterranean diet where pistachios are used in abundance and people have a lower risk of coronary artery disease and strokes.
  6. Pistachios are also rich in phyto-chemicals needed for maintaining good antioxidant levels. It also has carotenes and polyphenolic antioxidants that help in removing the toxic radicals that are oxygen from the body, and therefore, prevents infectious diseases and risk of cancers.
  7. Vitamin E is one of the most important components of Pistachios that consists of gamma tocopherol. It is strong antioxidant which is lipid soluble and contributes in maintaining the strength of the cell and mucus membrane as well as the skin.
  8. It is also rich in important vitamin B-complex groups like riboflavin, thiamin, vitamin B-6, as well as folates.
  9. Minerals such as calcium, copper, iron, zinc, magnesium are found in pistachios. A 100 gram of pistachios consumed everyday could suffice for 150% of recommended daily intake of copper needed for a better nervous system, metabolism and healthy red blood cells synthesis.
  10.  Pistachio oil is also one of the healthiest cooking oil options. Not only it has fewer calories but its nutty fragrance and flavor boosts the taste.
  11. It also keeps the skin healthy by preventing it from dryness. It’s also used as a base oil in traditional massage therapies, aromatherapies, pharmaceutical, and cosmetic products.

Pistachios can easily be found in the grocery stores. They could be found in many forms too such as shelled, unshelled, salted, roasted, sweetened etc. But one must always go for unsalted, roasted and unshelled pistachios as they are not only healthier bit also remain fresh for a longer time.

 

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