Aegina Pistachio, nut of life - 12 health benefits


Aegina Pistachio, nut of life
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Nuts are perhaps one of the most misunderstood foods; despite containing plenty of minerals, "good" fats, and protein, they are usually avoided as being fattening. Among them is the Aegina pistachio, which is not only delicious but also one of the best among quality nuts. Great nutritional value, rich in biotin, proteins, niacin and inorganic salts, they are beneficial for our health.
Actually, pistachios are considered superfoods. Only a handful of pistachios provide us with plenty of healthy ingredients. More specifically, they cover a significant percentage of our daily needs in energy, good unsaturated fatty acids, fibers, vitamin B, minerals, and antioxidants. With only 3 to 4 calories per nut, pistachios are undoubtedly ideal snacks and one of the healthiest.
 
They taste like no other food and as we will read below they carry a powerful nutritional punch. 

12 health benefits of pistachios

1. Nutrients
Pistachios are rich in protein, fiber, antioxidants, and at the same time, they contain more important nutrients, such as vitamin B6 and potassium. In just 28 grams of pistachios there are 156 calories, 8gr of carbs, 3gr of fiber, 6gr of protein, 12gr of fat (90% are healthy fats), potassium (8% of the RDI), vitamin B6 (24% of the RDI), thiamin (16% of the RDI), copper (18% of the RDI), manganese (17% of the RDI), phosphorus (14% of the RDI).

2. Vitamins of the B complex
Pistachios are also high in B complex vitamins. It is a given fact that vitamin B6 reinforces the immune system. Furthermore, vitamin B6 helps the body to absorb amino acids, while it also creates myelin, the integument surrounding the nerve fibers. As a result, our nerves neurotransmitters communicate faster and more effectively. Last but not least, vitamin B6 boosts the treatment of anemia by helping the body produce hemoglobin.

3. Antioxidants
Antioxidants prevent cell damage and reduce the risk of cancer. Pistachios contain more antioxidants than most nuts and seeds.
In a four-week study, participants who ate one or two servings of pistachios per day had higher levels of lutein and γ-tocopherol, both important antioxidants for the body. [1]
 
4. Improvement for a healthy heart
Pistachios lower the risk of heart disease. Studies [2] show that frequent consumption of pistachios can lower cholesterol, especially when it is combined with a low-calorie diet. This is due to the L-arginine they contain which improves the elasticity of the arteries, thus reducing the risk of blood clots.
 
5. Vitamin E
Pistachios are rich in vitamin E needed for our skin in order to fight free radicals. Combined with vitamin D, they amplify protection against skin cancer and fight the signs of aging.
 
6. Weight loss
A very good reason indeed! Pistachios are a good source of fiber and proteins which create a feeling of satisfaction and satiety that controls our appetite. Moreover, good monosaturated fatty acids aid the reduction of stomach fat and adding them in meals with high glycemic index, they significantly lower the postprandial glucose response.

A 24-week program monitoring overweight people showed that those who covered the 20% of their daily calories by consuming pistachios, lost 1.5cm more around their waist than those who did not eat pistachios. [3] While the number of shells left behind, give us an exact image of how many pistachios we have eaten, preventing us from consuming excessive quantities.
 
7. Eye protection
Two more substances found in pistachios are lutein and zeaxanthin. These carotenoids absorb the radiation that our eyes receive daily, protecting them from senile macular degeneration.
 
8. Probiotics
Precisely due to their high content in fiber, pistachios enhance the good gut bacteria and help their development, acting as probiotics. Bloating, constipation, diarrhea or other digestive problems are treated satisfactorily by adding pistachios to our diet.
 
9. Few Calories - High Protein
Pistachios have fewer calories compared to other nuts. However, with 20% of their weight being protein, pistachios come second in protein content after almonds. [4]
They also have a higher percentage of essential amino acids, which are the building blocks of the protein. Since our body is unable to produce them, amino acids must come from protein-containing foods in our diet.
 
10. Protection against type 2 diabetes
Phosphorus is confirmed to prevent the onset of type 2 diabetes, while it also supports the body with the intolerance to glucose. Well, guess who's rich in phosphorus…
 
11. Lower blood sugar level
Although they have a higher carbohydrate content than most nuts, pistachios have a low glycemic index which means they do not dramatically increase blood sugar levels.
Indeed, a research has shown that if we add 56 grams of pistachios in a diet rich in carbohydrates, sugar levels after a meal are reduced by 20-30% (to healthy people). [5] Plus, antioxidants, magnesium, carotenoids and phenolic compounds contained in pistachios are beneficial for controlling blood sugar levels.
 
12. Nourishing hair
Fatty acids contained in pistachios nourish the hair, making it denser and healthier, while biotin prevents hair loss.
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[1] http://jn.nutrition.org/content/140/6/1093.full
[2] http://hhd.psu.edu/news/2008/9_26_08_pistachio.html
[3] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24377454
[4] http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/nut-and-seed-products/3135/2
[5] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21364607
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