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Nutrition research unveiled this week shows pistachios are smart for the heart
Date:4/8/2008

FRESNO, Ca. April 8, 2008 More good news for pistachio fans! According to new data unveiled this week at the Experimental Biology Conference in San Diego, snacking on pistachios has proved once again to have a positive impact on improving cardiovascular health by significantly reducing inflammation in the body, a prominent cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factor.

CVD remains the number one cause of death in the U.S., with millions more Americans currently living with the disease. A new study, led by researcher Dr. Penny Kris-Etherton from Penn State Universitys Department of Nutritional Sciences, looked at the effects of pistachios on multiple CVD risk factors, some of which include cholesterol, blood pressure and the genetic expression of various genes related to inflammation. The study positively supports other recent studies that show a diet rich in pistachios packs a powerful nutrition punch.

Pistachios contain many important nutrients that contribute to their positive effect on health. Every new study adds another piece to the puzzle of how eating pistachios may benefit heart health, said Dr. Constance Geiger, nutrition expert for the Western Pistachio Association (WPA).

The Penn State study was a randomized, crossover, controlled study of 28 healthy men and women (ages 30-70) with slightly-elevated cholesterol levels (similar to cholesterol levels of the general population). It tested three cholesterol-lowering diets, one without pistachio consumption and two with varied levels of pistachios in relation to total caloric intake (on average, 1.5 ounces and 3.0 ounces). All diets provided the same amount of saturated fat and cholesterol, but different amounts of unsaturated fat delivered by pistachios. Participants were fed the same diet for two weeks, which served as a baseline before the test diets began. Each subject tested all diets for a period of four weeks, and results were measured after each diet cycle was completed.

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Contact: A'ndrea Elyse Messer
Aem1@psu.edu
814-865-9481
Henson Consulting, Inc.
Source:Eurekalert

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