Pista or pistachios is a dry fruit which is also famous as Pistachio. It is an amazing dry fruit which can add multiple benefits to your health if taken on regular basis in the diet. It originates from the Pistachio trees through the wind-pollination process. One male tree produces pollens for the nuts bearing females. Female Pistachio tree starts producing nuts at five and continue for 200 years.
It belongs to the cashew family (Anacardiaceae family) and was originated in the Central Asia and Middle East. It is cultivated in the Mediterranean regions in following countries such as India, Lebanon, New Mexico, Turkey, Syria, Greece, Iran, Tunisia, California, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan, Egypt, Italy, Pakistan, Uzbekistan, Afghanistan, Australia, United States and etc.
Iran, Turkey and United States are counted as the major producers of the pistachios. Pistachio tree is a biennial bearing plant, take around 6 to 10 years of time to fully develop and fruit production. After removing the outer shell of it, the inner, soft and yellow colored seed kernel is edible part.
Benefits of Pista/Pistachios
Pistachios are the wonderful dry fruits loaded with the lots of nutrients required for the healthy growth and development of the body. Adding some pistachios to the daily diet is the symbol of wellness of health. It is very delicious, soft and nutritious fruit can be easily liked by anyone, so do not become late to add it to your diet. I have mentioned below its all the amazing health benefits for which I sure that you quickly add it to your health:
Benefits of Pistachios for Heart
Balances Cholesterol Level
- Eating pistachios regularly in the diet reduces the bad cholesterol level (LDL) and increases the good cholesterol level (HDL) thus prevents from variety of heart diseases.
Keeps Heart Healthy
- It strengthens the nerves of the heart thus makes the heart stronger.
Reduces Risk of Heart Disorders
- It is the rich source of monounsaturated fatty acids (oleic acid and), antioxidants which helps in maintaining healthy blood lipid profile and preventing from the coronary artery disease, strokes and other cardio vascular diseases.
Fights with Inflammation
- It contains vitamins A and E which helps in fighting inflammation and reducing the risk of heart diseases.
Keeps Blood Vessels Healthy
- It contains a compound called l-arginine which strengthens the arteries linings and make it more flexible, reduces the blood clots formation and plaque formation in the arteries thus prevents heart from heart diseases.
Keeps BP under Control
- Its low sodium level and high potassium level helps in maintaining the blood pressure under control thus keeps the heart healthy.
Prevents from Heart Diseases
- It contains resveratrol which also helps to decrease the risk of heart diseases and cancers.
Benefits of Pistachios or Diabetes
Prevents from Type-2 Diabetes
- It is a dry fruit counted as the highest source of phosphorous which helps in preventing from the type-2 diabetes among people.
Keeps Blood Glucose Level under Control
- It (phosphorous) also involves in breaking down the big protein molecules into smaller amino acids thus prevents from the glucose intolerance or hyperglycemia (high blood glucose level).
Benefits of Pistachios for Anaemia
Improves Blood Flow
- It enhances the blood flow through the body by increasing the carrying oxygen capacity of the blood.
Enhances Haemoglobin Count
- Its high quantity vitamin B6 helps in increasing the oxygen quantity of blood as well as haemoglobin count thus prevents form the anaemia.
Benefits of Pistachios for Nervous System
Keeps Nervous System Healthy
- High level of the vitamin B6 availability in it makes the nervous system healthy and fit by producing required amino acids and promoting proper nerve impulses transmission.
Improves Nerve Impulses Transmission
- Vitamin B6 found in it involves in various other activities like serotonin, epinephrine, melatonin and GABA (gamma-amino butyric acid) synthesis which helps in better nerve impulses transmission all through the nervous system.
Benefits of Pistachios for Eye Health
Sharpens Eye Vision
- It helps in preventing from the age related macular degeneration and maintains the proper eye vision by fighting with the free radicals.
Fights with Free Radicals
- It has antioxidant property as it contains the lutein and zeaxanthin which plays an important role of fighting with free radicals and prevents the macular cells from getting damaged.
Benefits of Pistachios for Immunity
Boosts Body Immunity
- It is the highest source of the vitamin B6 which boosts up the immune system health by enhancing the hemoglobin count and oxygen rich blood supply to the body organs.
Increases WBC Production
- It provides nourishment to the lymph nodes and increases the WBC production which defends from various infections.
Benefits of Pistachios for Brain
Provides Better Nourishment to Brain
- It increases the blood count and oxygen supply to the brain which helps brain to grow and develop better.
Prevents from Infection
- It prevents various body organs from infections by enhancing the oxygen and hemoglobin rich blood supply to the organs like spleen, liver, thymus and etc.
Benefits of Pistachios for Skin
Makes Skin Healthy
- It is the richest source of the vitamin E and antioxidants which are very necessary to maintain the natural health of the skin.
Prevents from Skin Problems
- It provides better nourishment to the cell membranes of the skin and protects from the UV rays thus prevents from various skin diseases like skin cancer and sunburns.
Prevents from Wrinkles
- It nourishes the skin and makes it wrinkles free and look rejuvenates.
Prevents Skin from Dryness
- Oil found in it acts as an emollient which naturally moisturizes the skin and prevents from getting dry.
- It helps in hydrating the skin which smoothens the skin and makes it silky and glowing.
Loaded with Essential Nutrients
- It is packed with B group and other vitamins including folates which are very necessary for healthy skin.
Benefits of Pistachios for Long Life
Delays Early Ageing
- Its high level of vitamin E and antioxidants availability provides ability to the body to fight with the early ageing processes by neutralizing free radicals.
Benefits of Pistachios for Cancer Prevention
Provides Glow to Skin
- Its essential fatty acids help in providing the skin glowing complexion and radiant look.
Prevents from Cancer and Infection
- It is the rich source of phyto-chemicals, carotenes, vitamin E, fatty acids and polyphenolic antioxidants which helps in removing toxic free radicals from the body and prevents from various cancers and infections like prostate cancer, breast cancer and lung cancer.
Benefits of Pistachios for Hair
Promotes Hair Growth
- It naturally stimulates the hair growth as it contains fatty acids required for hair development.
Nourishes Hair Follicles
- It strengthens the hair strands as well as increases the hair flexibility by nourishing and moisturizing hair follicles.
Treats Split Hair Ends
- It is best treatment and used as home remedy for treating the split hair ends.
Reduces Hair Loss
- Its biotin availability provides help to fight with the hair loss if consumed on regular basis.
Benefits of Pistachios Nut Oil
- It is the pleasant and aromatic oil having emollient properties used for beauty purposes (as a traditional medicine) for massage therapy and aromatherapy in the pharmaceutical, cosmetic and etc industries.
Benefits of Pistachios for Weight Loss
Keeps Stomach Full
- It is the rich source of dietary fibers, proteins, calorie and fatty acids which makes the stomach feel fuller for long time thus involves in managing weight.
- It also involves in fighting obesity by burning extra and bad body fats and makes body healthy body through muscle building.
Contains Healthy Fat
- It is rich source of good fats which are soluble and do not add weight to the body.
Benefits of Pistachios for Digestive System
Promotes Proper Digestion
- Its high level of the dietary fibers takes part in the proper food digestion and strengthens the intestines.
Promotes Growth of Good Intestinal Bacteria
- It also involves in growth of good intestinal bacteria thus improves digestion efficiency.
Benefits of Pistachios for Men
Boosts Sexual Health
- It has aphrodisiac properties which help in stimulating the sexual desire among men by boosting the erectile functioning and blood flow to the men sex organs.
- It also helps in treating the erectile disfunctioning.
Enhances Blood Flow
- It has an amino acid, arginine which leads to the production of nitric-oxide which enhances the blood flow to the male sex organ.
Benefits of Pistachios for Women during Pregnancy
Beneficial for Mother and Baby
- It has iron and vitamin B6 which involves in the maintenance of hemoglobin count and oxygen rich blood supply to the body thus protects pregnant women from early pregnancy problems like nausea, morning sickness and anemia.
Keeps Vitals under Control
- It helps in keeping the blood glucose, blood pressure, weight and hemoglobin under control.
Instant Energy Booster
- It is very energetic fruit thus helps pregnant women by providing instant energy and protecting from tiredness and dizziness.
Benefits of Pistachios for Kids
Promotes Better Growth and Development
- It is very energetic dry fruit having good fat, high protein level, vitamins, minerals, iron, folates and antioxidants which provides most essential nutrients for the healthy growth and development of the kids.
Prevents from Disorders
- It prevents kids from proteins, vitamins, minerals and iron deficiency diseases like marasmus, kwashiorkor, beri-beri, rickets, eye problem, anaemia, bone problems and etc.
Improves Brain Development
- It contains very essential elements which are required for the brain development among children.
Other Health Benefits of Pistachios
- Its anti-inflammatory property and availability of the vitamin A and E help in reducing the whole body inflammation because of any problem.
Improves Metabolism and RBC Synthesis
- It has a vital mineral called copper which plays very essential role in the healthy metabolism, neurotransmission and red blood cell synthesis in the body.
Regularize Bowel Movements
- It is good source of the dietary fibers thus eating pistachios on regular basis regularizes the colon functioning and proper bowel movement.
Increases Haemoglobin Count
- It is the iron rich dry fruit which increases the count of both haemoglobin and RBCs in the blood thus helps in fighting with normal health problems like dizziness, insomnia, depression, nausea and etc.
Nutritional Benefits of Pistachios/Pista per 100 g
(Source: USDA Nutrient database)
Energy: 571 Kcal
Carbohydrates: 27.97 g
Protein: 21.60 g
Total Fat: 45.44 g
Omega-3 fatty acids: 262 mg
Omega-6 fatty acids: 13636 mg
Monounsaturated Fat: 24.2 g
Polyunsaturated fat: 13.9 g
Sugars: 7.81 g
Dietary Fibers: 10.3 g
Thiamin: 0.870 mg
Riboflavin: 0.160 mg
Niacin: 1.3 mg
Pantothenic acid: 0.520 mg
Pyridoxine: 1.7 mg
Folates: 51 µg
Vitamin A: 553 IU
Vitamin C: 5 mg
Vitamin K: 13.2 mcg
Vitamin E-γ: 22.60 mg
Sodium: 1 mg
Potassium: 1025 mg
Calcium: 107 mg
Copper: 1.3 mg
Manganese: 1.2 mg
Phosphorus: 376 mg
Iron: 4.15 mg
Magnesium: 121 mg
Selenium: 7 µg
Zinc: 2.20 mg
Carotene-β: 332 µg
Lutein and zeaxanthin: 1205 μg
How to Select and Store
Pistachios or pista is easily available in the market at any grocery store in many forms like unshelled, shelled, roasted, salted, sweetened and etc. Try to buy raw and shelled pistachios instead of buying processed, salted or sweetened. Avoid buying light, cracked and rancid smelled pistachios. Always go for the heavy, solid, fresh, shelled and sealed in airtight container. It can be stored in the sealed container and cool dry place or in the refrigerator for months.
How to Enjoy
It can be enjoyed in many ways like can be eaten raw, roasted, salted or sweetened. It can be added to the fried brown rice and desserts to enhance it taste. It can also be added to the fruit or vegetable salad, breads, cookies, muffins, biscuits, cakes, ice-cream, sandwiches, yogurt and etc. Pistachio butter can be made by mixing garlic, olive oil and etc according to taste.
Disadvantages, Side Effects and Precautions of Pistachios
Eating pistachio over limit may cause some severe health problems and food poisoning. It may add some extra weight if eaten irregularly. Some of the disadvantages, side effects and precautions of it are mentioned below:
- It may cause allergy to some people because of the anacardic acid (urushiol) availability. Some of the symptoms of allergy are skin itching, abdominal pain, breathing difficulty, headache, vomiting, diarrhea and etc.
- Eating too many nuts a day may cause side effects like weight gain, increased blood pressure, gastrointestinal problem and etc.
- Salted or sweetened pistachio may cause problem to the person with heart disease or diabetes as it increases the level of sodium and glucose in the blood.
- It contains a compound called fructan which is not dangerous however may cause some digestive system problems like constipation, bloating, diarrhea, flatulence, abdominal cramps and etc is eaten over limit.
How Many Pistachios to Eat Per Day
Any of the nuts is full of high calorie, good fat and high level protein which have lots of health benefits if eaten within limit however over limit or overeating of anything may cause minor to major health issues. 30 g of the pistachios can be eaten on daily basis but it is better to avoid overeating or consult your health practitioner if feeling any problem or allergy.
Find the Benefits of other Dry Fruits