Are Pistachios Good for Weight Loss

Pistachios

Weight loss is one of those topics that is quite simple, but many people make it very complicated. To lose weight, you need to eat less so that you create a negative energy balance or calorie deficit. This forces your body to burn fat for fuel. The result? Weight loss.

If there is no deficit, there is no reason for your body to burn fat, so no negative energy balance means no weight loss.

Despite this, many dieters are constantly looking for the perfect weight-loss food or diet, and almost as many people are busy vilifying certain food, saying that they’ll make you fat.

The reality is that you can lose weight eating junk food and get fat eating healthily; it all comes down to how many calories you consume. When it comes to weight loss, calories count.

That said, some foods are better for weight loss than others because they’re either more filling or contain fewer calories, so you can eat more of them.

So, are pistachios good for weight loss? They could be! But, like any food, if you eat too many pistachios, you could also gain weight; it all comes down to how many you consume.

In this article, we discuss how pistachios could help you lose weight and the benefits of eating this popular food.

Are Pistachios Good for Weight Loss

What Are Pistachios?

Bowl of Pistachios

Pistachios are one of the world’s most widely-eaten nuts, except they’re not a nut at all! In fact, pistachios are the seeds of the pistachio tree.

People have been eating pistachios for thousands of years, and they’re a very popular.

Pistachios are generally green in color but can be yellow too. They originated in Asia and are now grown commercially all over the world. Pistachios are sold in their shells or unshelled, as well as raw, salted, or roasted.

They’re widely available and are often used in cooking. For example, pistachios are an important ingredient in Mediterranean sweets called baklava, containing honey and filo pastry.

Eating pistachios can help you lose weight, and they’re also very nutritious.

Nutritional Information

Pistachios, like all seeds and nuts, contain an abundance of vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats. They’re also a good source of fiber. A one-ounce (28-gram) serving of pistachios provides:

159 calories

  • Carbs: 8 grams
  • Fiber: 3 grams
  • Protein: 6 grams
  • Fat: 13 grams (90% unsaturated)

In addition, pistachios contain the following vitamins and minerals:

  • Potassium
  • Phosphorus
  • Vitamin B6
  • Thiamine
  • Copper
  • Manganese

As well as these well-known micronutrients, pistachios also contain an abundance of antioxidant nutrients, which can help protect you from the damage caused by unstable molecules called free radicals. The main antioxidants in pistachios are lutein, zeaxanthin, polyphenols, and tocopherols.

The Benefits of Eating Pistachios

Pistachios are very nutritious, and eating them offers several noteworthy benefits:

Weight Loss

Pistachios are one of the lowest-calorie nuts. They’re higher in fiber and protein, which makes them more filling too. Also, if you buy pistachios still in their shells, you won’t be able to eat them so quickly, and you’ll also have evidence of how many you’ve consumed, which may help prevent overeating.

Pistachios are an excellent weight-loss snack, and even a small serving can be filling and satisfying to eat.

Improved Gut Health

High in fiber, pistachios are good for your digestive and gut health. The undigested fiber in pistachios is converted into prebiotics, which feeds the good bacteria in your digestive system and helps keep it healthy.

Also, a high fiber intake helps prevent constipation, which can lead to diverticulitis.

The fiber in pistachios is digested and converted into short-chain fatty acids, which may help boost immunity and lower your risk of heart disease and some cancers.

Better Cardiovascular Health

Pistachios may reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke. Eating pistachios can help lower your levels of bad LDL cholesterol while increasing levels of good HDL cholesterol. A low LDL/high HDL ratio is linked to better heart and circulatory health.

In addition, the minerals in pistachios may help lower blood pressure by relaxing the blood vessels and increasing blood flow.

Low and Stable Blood Glucose

Pistachio nuts

Pistachios are low in carbs but high in fiber and protein. This means they digest slowly and have a low glycemic index, so they don’t cause much of a spike in blood glucose.

Low, stable blood glucose levels are linked to better cardiovascular health, a lower risk of diabetes, and creates the ideal environment for fat burning and weight loss. It can also contribute to more stable energy levels and less hunger and cravings.

Downsides

By and large, pistachios are healthy and safe to eat. However, there are a couple of downsides to consider before adding them to your diet:

Sodium

Roasted pistachios are invariably salted. Consuming too much salt could counter some of their cardiovascular benefits. If you are eating pistachios for better heart health, choose unsalted varieties.

Allergies

Some people are allergic to pistachios. If you have a nut allergy, you may also be allergic to pistachios, despite the fact they’re actually a seed. If eating pistachios causes bloating, nausea, abdominal pain, a rash, or hives, you should stop eating them and consult your doctor.

Choking Hazard

Eating pistachios can result in small crumbs that can get caught in your throat or cause coughing or choking. Because of this, children and frail adults should not eat pistachios alone.

Bottom Line

Pistachios are a very versatile nut (sorry, we mean seed!). You can eat them raw or roasted as a snack, and they’re also an ingredient in lots of different foods, including salads, ice cream or gelato, pesto, nut butter, biscotti, granola, Turkish delight, and yogurt. They have a mild but pleasant flavor, and they’re filling too.

Lower in calories than most nuts, pistachios can help you lose weight when eaten as part of a calorie-controlled diet. They aren’t a magical weight-loss food, but nor will eating them automatically lead to weight gain.

Pistachios are loaded with beneficial nutrients, including fiber, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, the consumption of which is linked to better health and longevity.

A lot of people think that eating high-fat foods like pistachios is unhealthy but, of all the fat in these popular nuts/seeds, only ten percent is saturated. The rest is heart-friendly unsaturated fat.

If you want to eat pistachios for weight loss, buy them still in their shells. This will stop you from eating them too fast after a workout, and the shells will act as a reminder of how many you have eaten. Eating too many pistachios could lead to weight gain, so these are very useful strategies.

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