The pistachio, a member of the cashew family, is a small tree originating from Central Asia and Middle East and it produces seeds that are widely consumed as food.
Pistachios are one of the oldest nuts to date. They are native to Asia, particularly Iran and Iraq today, they can also be found in Greece, the United States, Astralia, Turkey and China among others. Pistachio trees take about 10 to 12 years to produce the first crop. They are a drupe, where the fruit has a large seed in the center.
Pistachios are one of the few nuts that contain most of the nutrients that are required by humans to complete health. They contain nutrients such as carbonhydrates, proteins, fats, dietary fiber, phosphorus, potassium, thiamine, vitamin B-6, beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin, calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, copper, manganese, vitamin C, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, folate, vitamin E, vitamin A and vitamin K. All of these nutrients make pistachios ideal for optimal health.
The health benefits of pistachios include a healthy heart, weight management, protection against diabetes and hypertension and improved digestion. The vitamins, minerals and fats and protein found in pistachios are very good you ones health.
Pistachios contain a lower calorie content in comparison to most other nuts like cashew nuts, walnuts, almonds, pecans, hazelnuts, brazil nuts and chestnuts. They also contain a higher amount of protein and a lower amount of fat content. They are an excellent source of mono-unsaturated fatty acids like oleic acid and antioxidants. Daily consumption can effectively decrease low-density lipoprotein and increase high density lipoprotein.
• Pistachios contain a good amount of mono-unsatured fats like oleic acid, which help decrease the levels of low-density lipoprotein in the body. The antioxidants, phytosterols and unsaturated fatty acids are excellent for promoting a healthy heart.
• Pistachios are packed with carotenoid antioxidants such as lutein and zeaxanthin. These antioxidants help in reducing the risk of contracting age-related macular disease in the elderly.
• Pistachios can help in eliminating skin dryness. The saturated fat plays an important role in this aspect.
• One of the other health benefits attributed to pistachios is that it is a good source of dietary fiber, which helps in the smooth digestion of food.
• Pistachios greatly influence sexual vitality in men. They can offer improvement in erectile function and can increase blood flow in the penis.
• Pistachios are packed with antioxidant compounds that are able to neutralize free radicals that cause dangerous ailements and cancer inside the body.
• These nuts can function in controlling diabetes. In people suffering from diabetes, the sugars form inappropriate bonds with proteins and make them unusable. This process is known as glycation. The antioxidants present in pistachios help in reducing the process of glycation and thus can help in controlling diabetes.
• Pistachios have a high content in copper, which helps in the higher absorption of iron into the body from food sources. This can be useful in combating conditions like anemia.