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Eating pistachios to lose weight?

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Old 12-16-2008, 02:07 PM   #1
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Default Eating pistachios to lose weight?

I'm not sure if it's actually working, or if it's combined with my attempt at increasing my activity level, but I seeeem to be losing weight by eating pistachios. I replaced most of my late night snack food with in shell pistachios and I think deshelling them and seeing the pile of shells in front of me tells me I've had enough. Is this a safe way to go about dieting?

I read about it here: It's a Dr. so I can trust him right?

Dr Painter recommended it in his pistachio principle.

Last edited by mandalinn82 : 12-16-2008 at 02:27 PM.
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Old 12-16-2008, 02:10 PM   #2
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There is no one food that is a magic bullet for weight loss ... I don't care what any doctor says on the internet.

If you've substituted eating pistachios where you used to eat more unhealthy fatty snacks, that's probably contributing to weight loss. If you eat fewer of them because you see the pile of shells and that makes you stop, that's probably contributing to weight loss, too.

But it has nothing to do with the fact that you're eating pistachios or any other kind of nut.

IN fact, nuts are some of the highest calorie snacks you can have. They're good for you - they contain lots of vitamins and minerals and healthy fats - but they're also very high calorie.

Eating a cup of pistachios is about the equivalent (calorie wise) of eating 1/2 a bag of potato chips. So be careful about eating too many.

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Old 12-16-2008, 02:16 PM   #3
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There is no one food that is a magic bullet for weight loss ... I don't care what any doctor says on the internet.

If you've substituted eating pistachios where you used to eat more unhealthy fatty snacks, that's probably contributing to weight loss. If you eat fewer of them because you see the pile of shells and that makes you stop, that's probably contributing to weight loss, too.

But it has nothing to do with the fact that you're eating pistachios or any other kind of nut.

IN fact, nuts are some of the highest calorie snacks you can have. They're good for you - they contain lots of vitamins and minerals and healthy fats - but they're also very high calorie.

Eating a cup of pistachios is about the equivalent (calorie wise) of eating 1/2 a bag of potato chips. So be careful about eating too many.

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Well actually I'm not eating them because they're pistachios, I'm eating them because of the pistachio principle.. and the principle is what is making me lose weight I think.
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Old 12-16-2008, 02:23 PM   #4
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I'm eating them because of the pistachio principle.. and the principle is what is making me lose weight I think.


Well the "Pistachio Principle" is nothing more than what EVERY common sense diet plan says. Eat less. Eat more healthy foods. Eat mindfully. Use smaller plates. Don't buy junk food, buy healthy food.

You could get the same results if you followed those rules and called it the "Apple Principle" or the "Milk Principle" or the "Peanut butter principle" or whatever.

You're losing weight because you're eating fewer calories than you're burning. Like I said, if eating pistachios (or any other food) contributes to more mindful eating, then I'm glad it's working for you!

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Last edited by PhotoChick : 12-16-2008 at 02:24 PM.
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Old 12-16-2008, 02:25 PM   #5
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Well the "Pistachio Principle" is nothing more than what EVERY common sense diet plan says. Eat less. Eat more healthy foods. Eat mindfully. Use smaller plates. Don't buy junk food, buy healthy food.

You could get the same results if you followed those rules and called it the "Apple Principle" or the "Milk Principle" or the "Peanut butter principle" or whatever.

You're losing weight because you're eating fewer calories than you're burning. Like I said, if eating pistachios (or any other food) contributes to more mindful eating, then I'm glad it's working for you!

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Obviously you have not actually read the pistachio principle.
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Old 12-16-2008, 02:27 PM   #6
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Ok. I just read the website, but ok. Good luck to you.

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Old 12-16-2008, 02:29 PM   #7
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Taking extra time to eat food one by one because you have to de-shell the pistachio, seeing evidence of already eaten food.. not possible with peanut butter and milk.
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Old 12-16-2008, 02:31 PM   #8
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The principle is, in a nutshell:

If you have remnants of what you ate (ie nut shells), you get a visual cue that helps you eat less.

The same would hold true if you left apples or empty milk glasses around you. This is a basic eating technique to monitor portions...there is nothing "magical" about pistachios.

The same diet advice Dr. Painter gives DOES hold true, even if it has been said many times before...use small plates, eat slowly, keep remnants/wrappers to remind yourself how much you've consumed, and eat with your eyes. Pistachio eating may fit this model, but lots of other foods do too.

I'm glad you've found something that works for you, though! Just know that it is reduced overall consumption that has led to weight loss, not the pistachios in particular.
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Old 12-16-2008, 03:05 PM   #9
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I would also note that not everyone responds to such visual cues. My husband's favorite snack is pistachios. He'll eat them with the bag sitting beside him, and a bowl for the shells in his hands. The mounting shells and eating them one by one do not hamper him in the least from consuming the entire bag in an evening. Even his fingers hurting from the salt getting into the scratches the hulls have made to his cuticles is not a strong enough cue (despite the fact that he'll complain about it).

For me, it also would not work. I have more success with premeasuring out a serving than I would trusting myself to stop based on the external cue of mounting food refuse. Also, a lot of healthy, low calorie, high fiber snacks do not produce much if any refuse, so I think it's a tool that has limited application. But even a limited tool, is a tool and if it's helping, more power to you.
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Old 12-16-2008, 03:07 PM   #10
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He'll eat them with the bag sitting beside him, and a bowl for the shells in his hands. The mounting shells do not hamper him in the least from consuming the entire bag in an evening.
No kidding!! I remember a few years ago my MIL picked up a 5lb bag of pistachios at Sam's Club. By the end of the weekend she and I alone had eaten the WHOLE BAG. Urg. I feel sick just thinking about it. I'm thinkin' shells didn't stop us much.

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Old 12-16-2008, 03:15 PM   #11
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No kidding!! I remember a few years ago my MIL picked up a 5lb bag of pistachios at Sam's Club. By the end of the weekend she and I alone had eaten the WHOLE BAG. Urg. I feel sick just thinking about it. I'm thinkin' shells didn't stop us much.

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LOL, As much as my husband is the pistachio addict in the family, I'm not immune either. My husband is my best portion control for pistachios, because he's finished the bag before I've had a decent portion. Even when we each buy our "own" bag, he's finished his and is asking if I have any pistachios left that I "wouldn't mind sharing." At least we buy the undyed pistachios - because it's not just cuts to the cuticle, but red or green stained fingers don't stop or slow us down us either.
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Old 12-16-2008, 03:21 PM   #12
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The worst for me as sunflower seeds. I would eat those things until my lips and tongue were hurting from the salt, and I would still eat more.
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Old 12-16-2008, 03:28 PM   #13
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Oh sunflower seeds! I thought that eating a shelled seed would slow me down because it was a "snacktivity," so of course I would eat mindfully. Tsh! I ate those puppies 'til my tongue felt blistered (better than wasabi peas, though -- those I would eat until I couldn't taste anything for days!). Fortunately for my weight loss, I had a good excuse to ditch them when I moved to a super-low-sodium diet.
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Old 12-16-2008, 04:41 PM   #14
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Yes, if you could look at an entire bag's worth of pistachio shells on your lap and not realize it's time to stop, then the pistachio principle may not work for you

Last edited by JackStands : 12-16-2008 at 04:41 PM.
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Old 12-16-2008, 04:45 PM   #15
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I adore raw almonds. But nuts in general, I love.

Yesterday our gift from our in-laws showed up. We asked for "no gifts" this year. We opened our box and it was filled with TEN, yep TEN pounds of chocolate covered almonds, raisins, honey roasted peanuts, and the like. I am happy to say that I sent the entire box (except the walnuts for baking) to my hubby's work. In many ways, I think it was a sabotage gift from my dear MIL.
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