10 More Reasons to Love Pistachios
Pistachio nuts are a popular snack going back centuries, but it’s more than just a favorite for taste, it’s a snack that is jam-packed with health and nutritional value. Pistachios are a power food in that there are so many health benefits to so many body systems it’s a wonder they’re not part of everyone’s health and dietary regimen. If you love pistachios rest assured, they love you back!
Pistachio nuts are grown all over the world, but they are native to central Asia. Iran is the largest producer of Pistachios, while the US is the second highest. Together they account for over 70% of the global crop. 98.5% of US pistachios are grown in California. Turkey, China, and Syria are also global producers.
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Pistachios and Nutrition
As mentioned, pistachio nuts are rich in vitamins, minerals, and nutrients, including antioxidants and fatty acids, making them a healthy choice for anyone, and are especially good sources for those who are vegan or vegetarian due to the B6 which helps in protein metabolism.
Pistachio Nutrition Facts
The Nutrition chart shows the wealth of vitamins and minerals and you can see just from that how they can impact not only a healthy diet, but impact different body systems and conditions.
What are the Health Benefits of Pistachios?
Pistachios are one of the lowest calorie nuts which makes them a guilt-free pleasure, when eaten raw. They are also very filling, which allows you to eat less while still feeling satisfied. This also helps in weigh loss efforts by reducing the feeling of hunger with fewer calories, and good calories! Snacking on pistachios is also a process, because you have to take them out of the shell, making the enjoyment last longer and distracting you from just popping them in your mouth mindlessly.
Source: Medical News Today
2.Pistachios are Good For Your Heart Health
Pistachios have helped lower cholesterol and blood pressure in studies, which lowers the risk of cardiac disease and risk factors.
In nearly 70% of studies where participants have consumed pistachios, the results have shown a decreased in total and LDL cholesterol (the bad ones) while also showing an increase in HDL cholesterol (the good one).
Pistachios also have an effect on mood, which helps reduce stress and therefore may reduce blood pressure and the resting heart rate even further.
Eating pistachios has also shown preliminary effects in improving vasodilation, which is the widening of the blood vessels to improve blood flow. Clearly this is a benefit overall, but it’s shown particular impact on an improvement of erectile dysfunction in men, by opening up the vessels to more blood flow.
4.Pistachios Are Good for Diabetes and Glucose Levels
Pistachios are carbs, which are often avoided or limited by those with both Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes or concerned about their glucose levels. But fear not, pistachios have a low glycemic index, which means they don’t cause sugar spikes, or rises in glucose levels, so you can be confident when enjoying them that you won’t adversely effect your levels, and they can become an integral part of your regimen to manage your sugar levels.
5.Pistachios and Vision
Pistachio nuts have high levels of lutein and zeaxanthin, two antioxidants that are critical in maintaining eye health. Two key areas where this is valuable is in the protection from Blue Light Damage and macular degeneration. We're now all more exposed to Blue Light Damage daily through computers and electronic devices, including staring at our phones for hours on end. Macular degeneration causes some people lose their central vision, often associated with aging. Pistachios help with these problems and maintaining eye health, so snack away!
We mentioned before that pistachios help in vasodilation which also helps in keeping calm under stress. They are packed with fiber and antioxidants that help the blood flow smoothly through the vessels, allowing you to keep calm under pressure. With their B6 and E vitamin content they also help reduce anxiety and serve as a neuroprotective food.
Source: Top 8 Mood-Boosting Snacks
A wealth of antioxidants and fiber make pistachios a natural prebiotic that helps with bloating, regularity, and overall stomach health. A high fiber diet is often recommended as a part of a heart and immune healthy diet. Eating pistachios has been shown to increase the number of butyrate-producing bacteria in the gut which can help reduce the risk of digestive disorders, cancer, including colon cancer, and heart disease.
With a high concentration of fatty acids, pistachios help reduce dryness and increase resilience.
Packed with antioxidants and Vitamin A, pistachios serve as an anti-inflammatory, easing pain, while reducing the signs and symptoms of disorders such as arthritis.
10.Improved Iron Absorption
Iron is a critical component to body function and having the right levels can affect all aspects of your health. Most of us consume and absorb iron easily, but in many cases, iron levels register as too low causing anemia or other conditions. Effective absorption of minerals and vitamins is important to good health, but with most if not absorbed they are excreted by the body. The human body does not naturally excrete iron, so a build up due to poor absorption can lead to dangerous conditions. Pistachios, once again, come to the rescue. With their high copper content, they aid in the absorption of iron so it can be properly and effectively used by the body, reducing anemia and related effects, as well as iron build up.
When thinking of the perfect foods we typically thing of bananas and peanut butter. But you would be remiss if you don’t include pistachios on that list. Densely packed with nutrients, proteins, antioxidants and other minerals and vitamins, they should be an integral part of any healthy diet, and they’re delicious, to boot!
Of course, you want to be careful, since too much of anything can be harmful, so be sure to select unsalted raw pistachios for the best healthy choice, and don’t overdo it. Including 1/2-1 ounce of pistachios a day can give you incredible health benefits while filling you up for longer.