Benefits Of Pistachios During Pregnancy

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    A few pistachio nuts can immediately add flavor to baked foods, soups, or salads. These crunchy and tasty nuts are packed with various nutrients. Therefore, pistachios during pregnancy are considered extremely healthy. However, everything you eat should be moderate to maintain your pregnancy health. Also, it is wise to be mindful of when and how to eat these delicious nuts for safety. Read this post as we share about eating pistachios during pregnancy and what benefits you and your baby can derive from them.

    Is It Safe To Eat Pistachios During Pregnancy?

    Pistachios help in the growth of the fetus

    Image: Shutterstock

    Yes, it is safe to include pistachios during pregnancy (1). They are power-packed with protein, fiber, potassium, folate, calcium, and iron, all of which are important for the growth and development of the fetus.

    What Are The Benefits Of Pistachios During Pregnancy?

    The nutrients present in pistachios are beneficial during pregnancy and aid in the healthy development of the baby. The nutritional benefits include:

    1. Aids fetal development

    Pista during pregnancy helps develop your unborn baby’s tissues and muscles

    Image: iStock

    Pistachios contain a good amount of protein that is essential for the development of your unborn baby’s tissues and muscles (2). It also keeps your weight under check (3) by regulating blood sugar levels.

    Nutritional fact
    Pistachios, which contain about 6g of protein per ounce, are a good source of protein, particularly for vegans and vegetarians (14).

    2. Balances lipid levels

    The high concentration of monounsaturated fatty acids in pistachios lowers bad cholesterol and increases good cholesterol levels, therefore, balancing lipids (4).

    3. Boosts immunity levels

    Pistachios are rich in antioxidants including carotene, polyphenolic substances, and vitamin A and E that help boost immunity (5).

    4. Prevents anemia

    Rich in iron and other essential minerals, which help in the formation of red blood cells. Including these nuts in your diet sufficiently will help towards preventing anemia, especially during pregnancy when your body needs more than the usual amount of blood cells (6).

    Quick fact
    Pregnant women require 27mg of iron daily. However, those following a vegetarian diet may need double the amount (6).

    5. Treats constipation

    Being rich in fiber, pistachios aid easy digestion and regulate bowel movements. They can also provide relief from constipation which can develop due to hormonal changes in early pregnancy (7).

    6. Anti-inflammatory nature

    Pistachios help relieve joint pains and swelling during pregnancy

    Image: Shutterstock

    Pistachios are anti-inflammatory in nature and help in fighting joint pains and swelling that are common during pregnancy (8).

    7. Good for fetal brain development

    Pistachios contain good amounts of omega-3 fatty acids such as oleic and linoleic acids, which are essential for the brain development of the baby (9).

    Keep reading for the complete nutritional profile of pistachios.

    Nutritional Value Of Pistachios

    Nutrients present in 100 grams of raw pistachios are as follows (10):

    NUTRIENT AMOUNT
    Calories 560kcal
    Water 4.37g
    Carbohydrates 27.17g
    Sugars 7.66g
    Protein 20.16g
    Fiber 10.6g
    Fat 45.32g
    VITAMINS
    Thiamin (Vitamin B1) 0.870mg
    Riboflavin (Vitamin B2) 0.160mg
    Niacin (Vitamin B3) 1.300mg
    Pyridoxine (Vitamin B6) 1.700mg
    Folic acid (Vitamin B9) 51mcg
    Ascorbic acid (Vitamin C) 5.6mg
    Retinol (Vitamin A) 516IU
    Alpha-tocopherol (Vitamin E) 2.86mg
    ELECTROLYTES
    Potassium 1025mg
    Sodium 1mg
    MINERALS
    Calcium 105mg
    Iron 3.92mg
    Phosphorus 490mg
    Magnesium 121mg
    Zinc 2.20mg
    LIPIDS
    Total saturated fatty acids 5.907g
    Total monounsaturated fatty acids 23.257g
    Total polyunsaturated fatty acids 14.380g

    g=grams; mg=milligrams; IU=International Units

    While pistachios are nutritious, their benefits are greater only when you consume them in the right quantity and stick to plain, unsalted pistachio nuts in their shells.

    How Many Pistachios Can You Eat Per Day?

    You may have up to ½ an ounce or approximately 24 pistachios per day (1). You should not eat more than the suggested quantity as it could lead to excess essential oils in the body that could be harmful to the brain (11).

    What Are The Possible Side Effects Of Eating Pistachios During Pregnancy?

    Pistachios may cause problems such as bloating and abdominal pain

    Image: iStock

    Some things you should keep in mind while including pistachios are:

    • They have fructans that will cause digestive problems such as constipation, diarrhea, bloating, abdominal pain and flatulence (12).
    • Roasted nuts coated in salt can have high sodium content that may elevate blood pressure (13). So it is best to choose the plain, unsalted variety.
    Point to consider
    High blood pressure may lead to preterm birth, low birth weight, and fetal growth restriction (15).

    A few precautions while including pistachios in your diet can be a good idea.

    How To Include Pistachios In Your Diet?

    Toss some pistachios into a fruit bowl, and eat them fresh

    Image: Shutterstock

    Here are a few interesting ways in which you can incorporate pistachio nuts into your diet:

    • Toss some pistachios to the fruit bowl, and consume it fresh.
    • Make a rough powder of them, and use as a dip to chicken before frying or grilling.
    • Mix in a milkshake along with almonds, cardamom, and saffron for a super-filling beverage.

    Consuming energy-rich nuts such as pistachios during pregnancy could be beneficial for you and your unborn baby. They contain several micronutrients and proteins that are great for your developing fetus. Moreover, it could help prevent anemia, boost immunity, and promote fetal brain development. You may include pistachios in your salad, milkshake or have them in fresh, raw forms. It is ideal to consume unsalted pistachios in the recommended amounts to stay safe and avoid the risk of side effects such as flatulence, constipation, and increased blood pressure during pregnancy.

    Infographic: What Are The Benefits Of Pistachios During Pregnancy?

    Fuel your pregnancy with the nutritious power of pistachios! These tasty nuts are a rich source of essential vitamins and minerals to support your and your growing baby’s health. Plus, their satisfying crunch and versatility make them a perfect snack for pregnant women. Read more about the benefits of pistachios through the following infographic.

    why have pistachios during pregnancy [infographic]
    Illustration: MomJunction Design Team

    References:

    MomJunction's articles are written after analyzing the research works of expert authors and institutions. Our references consist of resources established by authorities in their respective fields. You can learn more about the authenticity of the information we present in our editorial policy.
    1. Healthy Eating During Pregnancy; UC Davis Medical Center (2013)
    2. Eating Healthy During Pregnancy; clinicaltrials.gov
    3. Bridget Swinney; Eating Expectantly: Revised and Updated; page 50
    4. Pistachios; Colorado State University (2017)
    5. James Ponder; Study finds consuming nuts strengthens beneficial brainwave frequencies; Loma Linda University Health
    6. Getting Iron from Your Food; UNM Health System
    7. Fiber; Oregon State University (2018)
    8. Helieh S. Oz; Nutrients, Infectious and Inflammatory Diseases; Nutrients. (2017)
    9. Rachel Scherr et al.; Nutrition and Health Info Sheet: Omega-3 Fatty Acids; The Regents of the University of California (2016)
    10. Nuts, pistachio nuts, raw; USDA
    11. Mary Purdy; Your Brain On Food: Nutrition For The Mind; Dietitians in Integrative and Functional Medicine
    12. Amy Fedewa & Satish S. C. Rao; Dietary fructose intolerance, fructan intolerance and FODMAPs; Curr Gastroenterol Rep (2015)
    13. Understanding the DASH Diet – 9.374; Colorado State University (2018)
    14. 3 Reasons Why Pistachios Can Boost Your Health; Cleveland Clinic

    15. High blood pressure during pregnancy; March of Dimes


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