Pistachios are truly impressive, thanks to their vibrant green colour, delicious flavor, and nutrient profile! Here are 5 health benefits of pistachios that make us want to dive into a jar of pistachio butter right away!
If you’ve ever snacked on our pistachio bites or pistachio butter, you will likely agree that pistachios are one of the tastiest nuts out there. Just like almonds, hazelnuts, and macadamia nuts - pistachios are packed with protein, healthy fats, and fiber. Here’s what sets pistachios apart from our other favorite nuts:
1. Powerful Antioxidants
The vibrant colours of the pistachio nut are thanks to a number of powerful antioxidants. Two carotenoids - lutein and zeaxanthin are responsible for the green hue, along with chlorophyll. And if you’ve ever eaten a whole pistachio nut, you might notice the inner shell of the nut sometimes has a purple hue, which is a result of the antioxidant anthocyanin!
2. Great Source of Protein
With 6 g protein per 1 oz serving (or 2 tablespoons of pistachio butter), pistachios are an excellent source of plant-based protein.
3. Gut Healthy
Pistachios contain dietary fiber! Dietary fiber. Adults need 25-38 g of fiber per day (females 25 g; males 38 g), but our actual intake is typically much lower - usually around 15-20 g daily! Adequate fiber intake is associated with lowered risk of heart disease, slowed gastric emptying (therefore prolonging feelings of fulness), and better blood sugar balance. In addition, fermentable fiber promotes the development of beneficial microflora in the gut!
4. Healthy Fats
We can’t talk about any nut without mentioning healthy fats. Pistachios contain 12 g of healthy unsaturated fats per serving including monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. Reducing intake of saturated fats, and focusing instead on consuming mainly unsaturated fats is a great way to boost brain health, heart health, and reduce inflammation in the body. Pistachios contain alpha-linoleic acid (ALA), which the body converts into DHA and EPA omega-3 fatty acids.
5. Vitamins and Minerals
Pistachios are a great source of vitamin B6 (25% DV), thiamine (20% DV), and copper (20% DV). They also contain potassium, magnesium, iron, and calcium. Vitamin B6, like all other B vitamins, is essential for energy metabolism and cell function. It is also involved in immune function, brain development during pregnancy, and creating neurotransmitters (1)
Ways to Enjoy Pistachios
Here are some ideas to easily incorporate pistachios into your daily routine! Next time you need a satiating afternoon snack, a boost of protein and healthy fats in the morning, or an cozy and energizing drink... you know where to turn: