chapter  18
10 Pages

Phytochemicals and Health Aspects of Pistachio (Pistacia vera L.)

WithNavindra P. Seeram, Yanjun Zhang, Susan Bowerman, David Heber

Edible tree nuts are valued globally for their sensory, nutritional, and health attributes and are of tremendous economic importance. Aside from being high in unsaturated fatty acids and low in saturated fatty acids (SFA), tree nuts are rich sources of proteins, dietary bers, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidant phytochemicals. In fact, a growing body of studies suggests that consumption of nuts might confer bene cial effects on coronary heart disease (CHD) [1,2]. Although the major research interest on health bene ts of nuts has focused on their natural content of monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA), emerging evidence indicates that phytochemicals present in their skins (peels), including polyphenols, may also play an important role. Polyphenols have antioxidant properties, and their presence in outer layers (skins, peels, and hulls) of fruits, vegetables, and tree nuts may offer protection against oxidative stress when they are consumed.