How Pistachios Can Help You Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle

WEDNESDAY, APRIL 9, 2014

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When afternoon hunger cravings call and you hear your stomach growling, don’t be tempted to snack on junk food.  Although junk food may be high in flavor, it is not high in nutrition. Hunger cravings often strike in the middle of a busy work day – just a few hours after lunch, and a few hours before dinner time. To avoid giving into unhealthy afternoon munchies, you can quickly satisfy your mid-day-snack-hunger by enjoying in-shell pistachios, a simple, salty, crunch and crave-able snack that will satisfy both your taste buds and your tummy.

Believe it or not, delicious and nutritious pistachios are one of the lowest fat, lowest calorie snack nuts and they are nutrient-rich.1 Plus, with pistachios you get more bang for your nutritious buck. Case in point:

  • Pistachios offer more nuts per serving: With pistachios, you get about 49 kernels per ounce, compared to 23 almonds, 14 walnut halves and 18 cashews. 30 pistachios make a satisfying, deliciously healthy snack for about 100 calories.1
  • Pistachios may help bridge the hunger gap:  Pistachios have a good amount of protein, fat and dietary fiber, all three of which make for a balanced snack that may help keep you fuller than a carb-heavy snack like pretzels or chips.1
  • The Pistachio Principle may help you fool yourself full: “The Pistachio Principle” is a simple mindful eating concept that may help you fool yourself full – without feelings of deprivation.2 Dr. James Painter completed two studies that suggest individuals could reduce their overall calorie consumption without consciously restricting their diets. The premise is that consumption of in-shell pistachios may help to slow eating when compared to shelled pistachios because the leftover shells may offer an important visual cue about the amount consumed; thereby potentially reducing calorie intake. 3
  • Small Nut, Big Nutrition: Pistachios are a smart snack for healthy eaters, and make for a tasty and healthy habit. A naturally cholesterol-free food, nearly 90-percent of the fat in pistachios is the healthy unsaturated type. It’s easy to spot the good nutrition provided by pistachios, the colorful nut, which owe their green, yellow, and purple-red colors to the antioxidants and polyphenols found in the kernels and skins.1

Bottom line: Go for a daily handful of pistachios as part of a healthy diet.

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  1. U.S. Department of Agriculture. National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 24.
  2. Honselman, C.S., Painter, J.E., Kennedy-Hagan, K.J., Halvorson, A., Rhodes, K., Brooks, T.L., & Skwir, K. “In-shell pistachio nuts reduce caloric intake compared to shelled nuts.” Appetite. 2011, 57(2):414-417.
  3. Painter, J. “The Effect of Pistachio Shells as a Visual Cue in Reducing Caloric Consumption.”  Appetite. 2011, 57(2):418-420.