Are Pistachios Paleo? The Amazing Answer Plus All You Need To Know
If you’re anything like me, you must have asked this question, “Are pistachios Paleo?” Since I’m planning to follow the Paleo diet very soon, I like to know if I need to drop pistachio on my diet list. As far as I know, you can eat only organic, whole, and unprocessed foods in a Paleo, so I’m guessing that pistachios are okay.
I don’t want to rely on guesses alone, so I spent time reading on some Paleo-related websites to check if pistachios are indeed Paleo. If you’re interested in what I discovered so far, keep reading below.
What Are Pistachios?
Pistachios are tree nuts which belong to the cashew family. They’re enclosed in a hard, light beige shell that slightly opens when the vibrant green seed is fully grown. When eaten, you can taste their relatively sweet and rich nutty flavor.
Many people love pistachios because of their versatility. Aside from eating them as snacks, you can also add them to desserts, baked goods, and savory dishes. However, these nuts may give negative reactions to people who are allergic to tree nuts.
Nutritional Value And Health Benefits
As compared to other nuts, pistachios have lower calories of only 160 per ounce, higher protein of 6 grams per ounce, and the lowest fat content of 13 grams per ounce.
Unlike other nuts, such as pecans and hazelnuts, pistachios have zero sodium content, making them ideal for those people with hypertension. They can also be a great source of several nutrients, like potassium, zinc, and phosphorus.
Aside from the rich nutty flavor, pistachios are known for their multitude of health benefits, which includes:
- Weight Management: With just a handful of these nuts, you can feel full for a longer time. As a result, you cut your cravings for more unhealthy food. Most dieters love to snack on these nuts because they’re low in fat and calories. In fact, a 2010 study shows that pistachios are linked to lower body mass index and won’t cause any weight gain.
- Antioxidants: Pistachios are rich in antioxidants, like carotene and vitamin E, which help remove toxins from the body. As a result, you can protect yourself from premature aging, cancer, and other infections.
- Healthy Heart: The phytosterols and fiber in pistachios can help reduce the bad cholesterol levels in your body. Together with the healthy fats, they can help promote a healthy heart.
So, Are Pistachios Paleo?
Yes, pistachios are Paleo. Based on the list of Paleo Diet, pistachios belong to the class of nuts, which are recommended to eat because they’re unprocessed and unrefined. They can also be a great source of protein, carbohydrates, and good fats.
Nuts can be eaten in a Paleo diet, but beware of the load of omega-6 in some of them because too much of this polyunsaturated fat acid (PUFA) can be bad for your heart. Pistachios have a moderate amount of omega 6 so they can still be safe to eat even in generous amount.
Pistachios are available all year round, either shelled or unshelled. If you don’t like the hassle of opening the shells one by one, look for the shelled variety. However, you may pay a higher price for this sort of convenience.
If you like to buy the unshelled pistachios, check the shells and make sure they’re blemish-free. The color should be ivory and a natural slit opening should be seen at one end. For culinary purposes, never choose pistachios with red or green dyes because they’re often made to mask the blemishes.
Proper Storage Of Pistachios
Pistachios tend to have a limited shelf life because the nut meats are exposed to the air with their shells slightly open. Unshelled pistachios can be stored in the refrigerator for three months or in the freezer up to a year.
Shelled pistachios can also stay for three months in the refrigerator but their texture and flavor may be affected if stored in the freezer. The best storage container that you can choose is an airtight container because it can keep your pistachios from going stale due to moisture and air.
If you plan to consume the nuts for a few days, then you can store them in a resealable bag. To bring back the crunch of your nuts, toast them in the oven at 200 degrees Fahrenheit for about 15 minutes.
Are pistachios Paleo? Well, yes, because they’re considered as nuts, which are highly recommended for Paleo to offer your daily source of protein, good fats, and carbohydrates. Pistachios are a perfect snack because they have low carbohydrates, low calories, and low in fat, which make them ideal for those with diabetes and hypertension. Consuming these nuts won’t let you gain weight, too.
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