Nuts are a popular snack and an ingredient in both sweet treats and main dishes. If you like to eat nuts, pistachios are one of the healthier options. They are filled with essential nutrients and have a number of health benefits, helping you to control your body weight and lowering your risk for heart problems.
Pistachios contain fewer calories and more potassium and vitamin K per serving than other nuts. A 1-ounce serving of dry-roasted pistachios contains 160 calories, 6 grams of protein, 3 grams of fiber and 15 grams of fat, including only 2 grams of saturated fat. It also provides you with 25 percent of the daily value for vitamin B-6, 15 percent of the daily value for thiamine and phosphorus and 10 percent of the daily value for magnesium.
Snacking on pistachios may help lower your cholesterol. Study participants who consumed a low-calorie diet with either 10 percent of their total calories or 20 percent of their total calories in the form of pistachios for four weeks lowered their cholesterol more than participants who followed the Step 1 diet for lowering cholesterol, according to a study published in the “American Journal of Clinical Nutrition” in September 2008. Pistachios also contain l-arginine, which can make the lining of your arteries more flexible and make it less likely you will develop blood clots that could cause a heart attack.
If you like snacking on nuts, you can control your weight by limiting your portions. The fiber content of the nuts may make them more filling, helping you to eat fewer calories later on in the day. A study published in the “Journal of the American College of Nutrition” in June 2010 found that participants who consumed 240 calories worth of pistachios for 12 weeks lowered their body mass indexes and triglyceride levels more than those who consumed 220 calories worth of pretzels.
Although most of the fat in pistachios is the healthy unsaturated type, they still contain a lot of calories so you should only eat them in moderation. A study published in 2011 in “Appetite” found that participants ate fewer pistachios if they ate those that were still in the shells instead of shelled pistachios. If you like to snack on pistachios, this can prevent you from eating too many. Choose pistachios that are unsalted to help minimize your salt intake.
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