Get snacking on health-boosting goodness!
Aside from being really delicious, pistachios – the edible seeds of the pistacia vera tree – are packed with all kinds of health-boosting goodness! Whether you choose to snack on a handful alone or sprinkle some shaved slices over your meals, there are tons of reasons to make sure you include pistachios in your nutrition plan.
- Pistachios are high in antioxidants
Barring walnuts and pecans, pistachios boast more antioxidants than other nuts and seeds. Antioxidants help to prevent cell damage and prevent diseases like cancer. Pistachios also have the highest levels of two important antioxidants for eye health, helping to protect the eyes from damage caused by blue light. The antioxidants in pistachios are also easily absorbed during digestion.
- Pistachios are high in protein
About 20% of the weight of each nut is protein, while still being relatively low in calories. (This makes pistachios a great source of protein for vegans and vegetarians.) Pistachios also have a higher ration of essential amino acids (the building blocks of protein), an essential part of a healthy nutrition plan. Because your body doesn’t produce amino acids, you need to get them from your diet.
- Pistachios are great for your gut
Pistachios are also really high in fiber, helping you to maintain a healthy weight (making you feel fuller for longer) while lowering your risk of diabetes, heart disease, and some types of cancer. Eating pistachios may also increase the levels of beneficial bacteria in the gut, which adds to their disease preventing properties.
- Pistachios are good to your heart
Packed with vitamins and minerals, such as selenium and iron, and healthy fats, pistachios are great for heart and cholesterol health. Cardiovascular studies have shown that two portions of pistachios a day can help to reduce the risk of heart disease and that they also help to reduce cholesterol levels and high blood pressure. Women in particular will reap these benefits from adding pistachios to their daily diets.
- Pistachios are kind to your blood sugar
Another benefit of eating pistachios regularly is their low glycemic index, which means they don’t cause a spike in blood sugar immediately after you eat them. Not only does this help to lower the risk of diabetes, but snacking on pistachios is beneficial for blood sugar levels, blood pressure, obesity, and inflammation markers in people with diabetes.
With all the benefits of including tasty pistachios in your diet, it seems silly not to indulge where you can. Whatever your reason for including these little green gems, rest assured that you’re providing your body with all sorts of benefits to keep it healthier for longer.
Healthy Living is a frequently updated content section brought to you by the Saudi Sports for All Federation. In the spirit of supporting our #HealthyActiveCommunity, we’re sharing tips around wellness, physical activity and more!