Originally published December 10 2009
Snack Your Way to Health with Pistachio Nuts
by David Victor
(NaturalNews) Whether you are trying to lose weight or just eat a healthier diet, snacking can be a huge problem. No matter how hard you try to plan your day out and have healthy meals on hand, there are always times where you just need a snack. Pistachio nuts are a snack that can provide great nutrition and get you through to your next meal without a lot of calories. They taste great too.
Pistachios have over 30 vitamins and nutrients including vitamin B6, copper, manganese, thiamin, dietary fiber and protein. They also have a high amount of antioxidants and are the only nut to have significant amounts of the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin which may reduce the risk of macular degeneration.
Pistachio nuts have also been shown to improve cardiovascular health. According to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, pistachios may lower LDL (bad) cholesterol levels and increase HDL (good) cholesterol levels.
The pistachio nut is low in calories which makes it an ideal choice for a healthy snack. It is often called the "skinny nut" because it has fewer calories and less fat than many other nuts. It also has protein and dietary fiber which help you feel full which is exactly what you need when you are eating a snack. A handful of pistachio nuts can get you through to the next healthy meal with very few calories and a whole lot of taste.
Lastly, there is a psychological reason that pistachio nuts make a great snack. If you eat pistachios that are still in the shell, you will be forced to eat them slowly. This way you will only eat what you need to satisfy your hunger and not keep eating because you are bored or nervous. The shells also give a reminder of how many nuts you have eaten. Since snacking is often psychological as much as it is hunger, pistachio nuts are a great weapon against excessive snacking.
When you put everything together, it is easy to see why pistachio nuts can be a great snack. Put a handful in a bag and keep them handy for whenever you feel the urge to snack. They really can help you snack your way to health.
If you want to get the benefits of pistachios more frequently than snack time, you can add them to cereal, put them on yogurt, or use them in main dishes. You can find recipes for pistachio dishes at many sites on the Internet.
About the authorDavid Victor is a health and fitness enthusiast who enjoys learning about all aspects of health and sharing that information with others through writing. He maintains a health and fitness website called Sassafras Station and an associated blog at http://www.sassafrasstation.com/blog
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