We all know that nuts make great snack foods, providing you with a nutrient-dense energy boost in a conveniently small package. But, not all nuts are created equal, and some, such as pistachios, are better to snack on than others. Here are five reasons why pistachios just might be the smartest snack food of all time.
They’re super healthy.
Pistachios are nutrient powerhouses, packing protein, fibre, antioxidants, vitamins, and heart-healthy monounsaturated fatty acids, into each tiny green mouthful. They are also one of the best sources of vitamin B6, which is essential for many bodily functions, including controlling your blood sugar levels and forming hemoglobin, which carries oxygen in your red blood cells.
They’re less calorific than other nuts.
Although they are rammed full of beneficial nutrients, nuts can also be quite calorically dense, and so it’s essential to be mindful of your portion sizes. The excellent news for pistachio lovers is that they are one of the lowest-calorie nuts, which means that you can snack on more of them throughout the day. A one-ounce serving of dry-roasted pistachios contains just 162 calories, which is less than the same serving of pecans, peanuts, peanuts, walnuts or almonds.
You eat them more slowly.
There’s no doubt about it, nuts are tasty, and so before you know it, you may look down and see that you’ve demolished a whole bag in just a few minutes. If you find yourself racing through your nuts, then pistachios could be the perfect snack for you because they slow down your eating by first making you work through their semi-split shells. Click here for some fun things to do with pistachio shells.
They will keep you fuller for longer.
A good snack should provide you with a much-needed energy boost and help to keep you feeling fuller for longer until your next meal. Pistachios make the perfect mid-morning and afternoon snack because they are rich in fibre and protein, both of which help make you feel full and fight off pesky hunger cravings. Because they often come packaged in their semi-split shells, pistachios also help to encourage mindful eating, which triggers receptors in the brain and will tell you when you feel full.
They can help you to lose weight.
Despite being nutrient-dense, pistachios are an excellent weight-loss snack because eating just a small portion can help stop you from feeling hungry. In one 12-week study, participants who ate 1.9 ounces of pistachios as their afternoon snack, saw double the weight loss of those who snacked on 2 ounces of pretzels! What’s more, despite their higher fat content, research suggests that not all fat in pistachios is absorbed by the body, meaning that they could be even lower in calories than people think. You can learn more about pistachios and weight loss here.
So the next time you grab a chocolate bar or a bag of crisps to tide you over until your dinner, you may want to think about picking up a handful of pistachios instead.
Shopping for good quality pistachios? We made a list of the best places you can buy your pistachios. Check it out here.