Health Benefits and Side effects of Pistachio
Pistachios are green colored unique nuts having a slightly sweet taste and are among the oldest nuts. These nuts are the oblong edible seeds of the Pistacia vera tree, which belongs to the Anacardiaceae, also known as the cashew family.
Pistachios are not only a great source of garnishing, they are also one of the healthiest foods. They are a powerful food pack that are loaded with antioxidants, including lutein, beta-carotene and gamma-tocopherol. Pistachios are high in protein, fibre, vitamin E, vitamin K, vitamin B6, thiamine, folic acid, vitamin B5, and minerals such as potassium, calcium, copper, phosphorus and manganese. Pistachios are also a rich source of essential fatty acids.
Health Benefits of Pistachio
Improves heart health-
Consuming pistachios can effectively improve your heart health. These nuts contain arginine (a type of amino acid). Arginine is also known to lower blood pressure. Along with this, pistachios are also rich in monounsaturated fatty acids, which help lower high blood pressure and bad cholesterol. Thus, it cleanses the heart vesselsand contributes to heart health.
Helps in weight loss-
Pistachios are rich in fibre and protein, which increase satiety and in turn can aid weight loss. The fiber in it increases the body's metabolism, which helps to reduce excess weight from your body. Pistachios are a good source of monounsaturated fat, which helps regulate weight. It is also known as a low-calorie snack, so it can be enjoyed when you feel hungry.
Promotes gut bacteria-
Pistachios contain a large amount of fiber, which can strengthen the digestive tract. Gut bacteria ferment the fiber in pistachios and convert it to a short-chain fatty acid - butyric acid. Therefore, they can significantly increase the concentration of bacteria in the gut. The higher amount of fiber also helps prevent constipation.
Control blood sugar levels-
Pistachio helps increase levels of peptides that regulate glucose levels in diabetics. Therefore it helps lower blood sugar levels and keep them under control.
Lowers cholesterol levels-
Pistachios are rich in antioxidants and have a cholesterol-lowering effect that helps lower bad cholesterol (LDL) and increase good cholesterol (HDL).
Works as an anti-inflammatory-
Pistachios are rich in monounsaturated fats which help fight inflammation. They help fight internal inflammation, especially in heart diseases.
Pistachios are a good source of nutrients that are important for the health of your eyes. Antioxidants like lutein and zeaxanthin, are present in the human retina and in adequate intake of these antioxidants leads to vision problems such as refractive errors and cataracts. Pistachios help in fulfilling the insufficiency of these antioxidants. They are also high in zinc, which helps reduce the risk of impaired night vision.
Consumption of pistachios every day can boost our immune system. They are rich in vitamin B6, which is important for better immune system functioning. It contains antioxidants that can help prevent infection.
Side effects of Pistachio
Following are the side effects of eating pistachios in excess-
Pistachios can affect the digestive system and cause digestive problems such as bloating, gas, upset stomach, diarrhea and constipation. The degree of discomfort depends on the number of nuts eaten. Higher the consumption, the bigger the problem.
Where are Pistachios found?
Pistachios are native to the Central Asian region, Iran and Afghanistan. In India, it is widely grown in Jammu and Kashmir. Archeology shows that pistachio seeds were discovered as early as 6750 BC.