California Pistachios and Weight Management
Guideline 8 in the Indian Dietary Guidelines recommends “Avoid overeating to prevent overweight and obesity: Rationale: Overweight/obesity is the causative factor for several chronic non-communicable diseases including heart disease, diabetes and certain types of cancers.”1
Pistachios are an energy-dense food with a high-fat content which leads people to believe eating nuts leads to weight gain. This is a popular misconception among consumers! The total fat content of a one ounce serving of pistachios (49 nuts) contains 11g of poly and monounsaturated fats (healthy fats), 1g of saturated fat, and zero trans fat (“bad” fats).
In a recent study in France, 60 healthy women were divided into two groups where one group ate either 2 ounces (56g) of pistachios or a 2 ounce (56g) high protein biscuit as an afternoon snack for four weeks. This amount was equivalent to 15% of the daily energy intake in French adult women. The study resulted in no significant change in weight for either of the groups, but the group eating the pistachios increased their intake of important micronutrients like thiamin, vitamin B6, copper, and potassium.2
These findings may be because California pistachios are high in fiber, protein and unsaturated fatty acids which causes a feeling of fullness and can lower subsequent food intake. Compared with other nuts, dry roasted pistachios have a lower fat content and therefore, lower in calorie content per serving (160 kcal/28g), while offering the most nuts per serving among most popular snack nuts.