Pistachio Nutritional Value and 7 Health Benefits

Those green pistachio nuts that owe their roots to Persia, are an ineluctable part of many savories and sweets and are one of the favorite ‘nuts’ across the globe. Won’t it be a surprise to you to know that they are originally not green in color? Natural ripened pistachio nut has a beige color shell while the roasted nut may have a red color as well.

The green color attributed to this nut is actually died by the importers to hide the stains on the nut that occur while they are sorted by hand. Though those nuts are sorted with machines nowadays and there is the least chance for stains, they are still given green color to meet the customer expectation.

Here is another interesting fact about pistachio though often referred to as ‘nut’ it is not a botanical nut, but a culinary nut. Apart from bestowing unique flavor to whatever recipe it is added to, it has high nutritional value as well. It is rich in many important nutrients and thus, should essentially be made a part of your daily diet. Read on to learn more nutritional facts about pistachio nuts.

Pistachio Nutritional Value and Facts

Amount of Pistachio: 1 cup
Total Weight of Pistachio: 123g

Basic Components            
Protein25.3 g
Water4.9 g
Fat54.7 g
Total Calorie685
Calorie from Fat458
Calories from Carbohydrate140
Calorie from Protein88
Total Carbohydrate34.4 g
Dietary Fibers12.7 g
Sugars9.4 g
Vitamin A680 IU
Vitamin C6.2 mg
Vitamin E2.8 mg
Thiamin1.1 mg
Riboflavin0.2 mg
Niacin1.6 mg
Vitamin B62.1 mg
Folate62.7 mcg
Pantothenic Acid0.6 mg
Calcium132 mg
Iron5.1 mg
Magnesium149 mg
Phosphorus603 mg
Potassium1261 mg
Sodium1.2 mg
Zinc2.7 mg
Copper1.6 mg
Manganese1.5 mg
Selenium8.6 mcg
Pistachio Nutritional Value
Cover Image by Alexas_Fotos from Pixabay

Health Benefits Of Pistachios

  1. Pistachios are considered an important dietary constituent due to the abundance of energy; 100 grams of pistachios consist of 557 calories. In addition to that, they provide many vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, proteins, and carbohydrates.
  2. Pistachios contain mono-unsaturated fatty acids like oleic acid and an abundance of antioxidants. Regular dietary intake of pistachios reduces the harmful LDL cholesterol levels in the blood while at the same time, increasing the beneficial HDL cholesterol. The dietary fiber, mono-unsaturated fatty acids, and antioxidants in this nut help to reduce the risk of coronary artery diseases and stroke.
  3. The phytochemicals present in the pistachios are great antioxidants. They contain carotenes, vitamin E, and polyphenolic antioxidant compounds as well, which add to the antioxidant properties and thus help in removing the harmful free radicals from your body. Thus, in that way, pistachios help reduce the risk of many catastrophic diseases like cancer.
  4. Pistachios are an excellent source of vitamin E, especially rich in gamma-tocopherol; contain about 23g per 100 g. Vitamin E is a powerful lipid-soluble antioxidant, essential for maintaining the integrity of the cell membrane of mucus membranes and skin; offers protection from harmful oxygen-free radicals.
  5. They have an abundance of B-complex groups of vitamins like riboflavin, niacin, thiamin, pantothenic acid, vitamin B-6, and folate and hence, contribute to healthy skin, hair, and muscle tone, enhance the function of the immune system and nervous system, boost growth and division of cells and many more
  6. Pistachios have a considerable amount of copper and thus, it helps in maintaining metabolism, enhancing red blood cell synthesis along helping in proper neurotransmission
  7. Pistachio oil has significant effects on the skin. It protects your skin from getting dry. It is used in many traditional massage and aromatherapy. 

Additional Tips

  1. Pistachios are available in different forms shelled, unshelled, salted, etc. It is better to buy whole nuts i.e., shelled raw pistachios rather than processed/salted as the former has more health benefits.
  2. Good pistachios can be identified by their properties. They should have off-white shells and the nuts should be uniform sized. Avoid if they have some cracks other than the natural cleave. They should not have a rancid smell.
  3. Store the shelled pistachios in an airtight container. If you have unshelled pistachios, store them in a cool, dry place. You can store these nuts for many months. 

Culinary use

  1. Pistachios are consumed in raw, roasted, processed, and salted forms.
  2. Pistachios are important constituents of many sweets and savories.
  3. Roasted and crushed pistachios are used in salads, desserts, ice cream, biscuits, sweets, and cakes. 

Safety Warning

  1. Pistachio nuts may cause allergic reactions in some sensitive individuals. This is due to the chemical compound anacardic acid present in it. The allergy symptoms vary from simple skin itching to severe form anaphylactic manifestations like breathing difficulty, vomiting, diarrhea, etc.
  2. Pistachios may cause cross-reactions when taken along with some nuts and fruits of the Anacardiaceae family (mango, cashew nuts, etc.) 

Mentioned above is some important information on pistachio nuts. You might have already learned about their importance as a food supplement. Make pistachios a part of your daily diet and enjoy good health.

Beyond their nutritional prowess, pistachios extend their influence to the realm of skincare, with their oil serving as a shield against skin dryness, a staple in traditional therapies.

However, amid their grandeur, a note of caution surfaces. Pistachios, despite their virtues, may trigger allergic reactions in sensitive individuals due to anacardic acid, necessitating mindfulness in consumption, particularly for those with allergies.

Pistachios stand not merely as a delectable addition to recipes but as a potent source of health, urging inclusion in the daily diet for a journey toward robust well-being. As you embrace the myriad uses of pistachios, from raw to roasted, remember their potential and revel in their benefits while staying mindful of their individual impact on your health.