Pistachio nuts are native to the Middle East and Central Asia and have been a snack item for several years. They are a member of the Anacardiaceae family, which also includes cashews, mangoes, and poison ivy. Pistachios are small, oval-shaped nuts with a hard, greenish-brown shell. Inside the shell is a creamy, light-green nut. Pistachios are quite versatile and hence they're also used in a variety of recipes. Pistachios are one of the most nutritious types of nuts as they are loaded with protein, fiber, and essential vitamins and minerals. They are also rich in healthy fats, antioxidants, and other beneficial compounds. Let's take a look at some of the best pista benefits.
11 Benefits of Pistachio (Pista):
There are many benefits of pistachio nuts. Here are 11 of the most surprising ones that you will love to know about:
1. Improves Heart Health:
Eating pistachios may help reduce cholesterol levels, which can reduce the risk of heart disease. They are also a good source of antioxidants, which can help protect against oxidative damage to the heart (1).
2. Helps With Weight Management:
Consuming a handful of pistachios each day can help control weight as they are low in calories and high in fiber (2). They can also help you feel full for longer, which can ultimately help reduce overall calorie intake. Doesn't that sound like one of the greatest benefits of pista for weight loss? We think it does!
3. Boosts Digestive Health:
Pistachios are a good source of dietary fiber, which can help promote regular bowel movements and reduce constipation (3). So if you are experiencing some digestion issues, make sure to include some pistachios in your daily diet and you will be able to see results in just a few weeks.
4. Enhances Skin Health:
You'd like to know that pistachios are packed with vitamin E, which is important for healthy skin (4). Vitamin E helps protect your skin from damage caused by free radicals, and can also help reduce wrinkles and age spots (5). The benefits of pista for the skin don't only limit to that, these nuts can also nourish your skin and increase its elasticity with the help of rich fatty acid content in them.
5. Promotes Hair Health:
Pistachios are a good source of biotin, which is important for healthy hair. Biotin helps promote hair growth and reduce hair loss (6). So if you wish to get some pista benefits for your hair, simply start incorporating a handful of them in your daily routine and you will start to see a difference in your overall hair health in no time.
6. Upgrades Brain Health:
One of the pista benefits is linked with brain health. Pistachios contain antioxidants, which can help protect the brain from oxidative damage (7). They also contain compounds that can help improve brain function and reduce the risk of neurodegenerative diseases (8).
7. Betters Eye Health:
Pistachios are loaded with lutein and zeaxanthin - two of the most powerful antioxidants that can aid in reducing the risk of age-related macular degeneration (9).
8. Controls Diabetes:
Pistachios are low in carbohydrates and have a low glycemic index, which makes them a great choice for people with diabetes (10). So just enjoy snacking on some pistachios to help control your blood sugar levels if you're diabetic.
9. Helps Cut Down the Risk of Cancer:
Pistachios contain compounds that may help reduce the risk of certain types of cancer (11). However, as cancer is a chronic illness, only consuming pistachios won't help, but they can surely contribute to maintaining better health. You must include other foods, and medical treatments as needed or advised by the doctor.
10. Enhances Bone Health:
One of the pista benefits is linked with bone health. Pistachios are packed with magnesium, which is crucial for maintaining healthy bones. Magnesium helps your body absorb calcium, which can ultimately reduce the risk of osteoporosis (12).
11. Improves Immune System:
Pistachios are a good source of zinc, which is important for maintaining a healthy immune system. Zinc helps your body fight off infections while aiding in lowering the severity of colds and flu (13). Just a handful of pistachios each day will eventually improve your immunity, doesn't that sound like one of the best benefits of pistachio nuts?
Almond vs Pistachio:
Ever wondered which nuts are better when it comes to almond vs pistachio? Well, let us tell you that pistachios and almonds are both popular types of nuts, but they have some key differences that you might like to know. Almonds are a good source of vitamin E (14), while pistachios make for an even better source. Not only that, but pistachios are also higher in fiber in comparison to almonds. Almonds are higher in calcium (15), while pistachios are higher in magnesium. When it comes to taste, pistachios have a milder flavour than almonds. They also have a creamier texture, while almonds have a crunchier texture.
In fact, if you wish to try a meal replacement shake that's got the flavour of both pistachio and almond, you must try the Saffola Fittify Hi-Protein Slim Meal Shake - Pistachio Almond. It contains dietary fiber, 25 vitamins, and minerals along with 5 superfoods. When you replace one regular meal with one slim meal shake, you get a minimum of 60% lesser calories vs an average Indian meal with 50% daily vitamin nutrition as per the recommended daily allowance.
Nutritional Value of Pista:
Pistachios are loaded with many essential nutrients. Here is a breakdown of pista nutritional value as per one-ounce serving (16):
Fiber: 3 grams
Protein: 6 grams
Carbohydrates: 8 grams
Fat: 13 grams
Lutein and zeaxanthin: 5% of the RDI
Vitamin E: 7% of the RDI
Zinc: 8% of the RDI
Magnesium: 9% of the RDI
Biotin: 10% of the RDI
Side Effects of Pista:
While there are several health benefits, there can be some pistachio side effects too.
- Eating pistachios in moderation is generally safe. However, eating too many can cause side effects such as stomach pain, nausea, and diarrhoea.
- Some people may also be allergic to pistachios, so it's always better to talk to your doctor before adding them to your diet.
Pistachio nuts are a good source of protein, fiber, and essential vitamins as well as minerals. Eating pistachios on a daily can benefit you in ways more than one, most of which we've mentioned above for you. They have a mild, creamy flavour that makes them a great snack food. However, it is important to eat them in moderation so as to avoid any side effects. They are packed with beneficial nutrients and can help improve your overall health. So, don't think twice before munching on these healthy nuts.
How many pistachios should I eat daily?
Nutritionists recommend not more than 56 grams of pistachios a day, which roughly comes up to 90 pistachios. Also, make sure you drink enough water to digest these nuts, or else you can get an upset stomach.
Is pista suitable for pregnancy?
There are many benefits of pistachio for pregnant women, especially during the first trimester as they are highly nutritious. They are loaded with protein, fiber, and healthy fats while containing vitamins A and B12, iron, and potassium - all of which prove important during pregnancy.
Can I eat pista on an empty stomach?
You can consume pista raw in the morning on an empty stomach or as a snack in between your meals. You can also use them in cooking rice dishes, baked items, and sweets. So go ahead and start including these nuts in your daily diet to reap all of their benefits.
Who should not eat pista?
If you suffer from fructan intolerance, which is a bad reaction to a type of carbohydrate, pistachios won't work in your favour as they can give you bloating. High levels of sodium can lead to high blood pressure, stroke, and heart disease.
Should I soak pista before eating?
You can soak some pistachios in water before consuming them as it makes them softer and increases their nutritive value at the same time. Make sure you soak these nuts for 5-6 hours to make them easy to digest.
How long does it take to digest pistachio nuts?
Pistachio nuts and other nuts like raw peanuts, almonds, walnuts, etc. can take up to 2.5 to 3 hours to completely digest.
What is the best time to eat pistachios?
You should preferably eat pistachios between 6 to 9 pm every evening in order to enhance melatonin levels. It does take some time for them to be digested for extra melatonin to be produced.