Pistachios are delicious and fun to eat, but they are also extremely healthy. They have rich nutrient content which provides a wide range of health benefits, like improving the gut bacteria, reducing blood pressure and cholesterol, etc.
But, how do they affect blood sugar levels? Are they a good choice for those with diabetes?
Well, a group of researchers decided to find the answers to these questions, by analyzing how pistachios affect those with prediabetes.
Prediabetes happens when a person’s blood sugar levels are higher than the average, yet not too high to be diagnosed with diabetes. So, these people have an extremely high risk of developing diabetes.
So, are pistachios reducing or increasing this risk for those with prediabetes?
The good combination of fiber, protein, and fat in pistachios are responsible for its blood glucose-lowering effects. In fact, it’s the reason for most of its health benefits.
Researchers divided 54 prediabetes patients into two groups. All participants led a healthy diet for two weeks. The following 4 months, only the participants from the first group consumed 2 ounces of pistachios daily.
Then, all of them followed a standard diet for another two weeks. The participants from the two groups ate the opposite diet in the following four months.
The results of the study showed that fasting blood glucose levels, hormonal, and insulin markers have all reduced drastically during the pistachio diet. On the other hand, the same markers increased during the control diet.
What’s more, none of the participants gained weight, and those following the pistachio diet experienced reduced inflammation.
Researchers concluded that consuming a handful of these nuts every day, following a healthy diet, could improve the condition of those with prediabetes. Also, it could reduce their risk of developing diabetes.
But, since they are high in calories, people should adjust other parts of their diet to prevent adding extra daily calories.
So, if someone has a high risk of developing diabetes, or they already have prediabetes, they should consider adding these nuts to their daily diet.