Pistachios for Your Ticker

Back in April, HealthDay News reported that pistachios may help take a bite out of cholesterol, and now, The Cardio Blog passes on information linking pistachio consumption to heart health. Here’s more:
Do you have high cholesterol? Apparently pistachios may help, according to a study published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition. This challenges the long-held notion that only a diet low in fat will help combat cholesterol, since pistachios have moderate amounts of fat. True, it's a healthy fat but it's a at nonetheless. If you're concerned about your cholesterol, however, it's recommended that you get between one and two handfuls a day -- no more than that and certainly not in ice cream form.
Not exactly new news to Dr. Fuhrman, he believes that both nuts and seeds are vital parts of the human diet. From Nuts and Seeds Are Excellent Foods:
Nuts and seeds are a natural part of the diet of homo-sapiens. They are perfectly adapted to the taste and ability of humans to pick, dry, store, and crack. No wonder study after study shows raw nuts and seeds not only lower cholesterol, but protect against common diseases of aging. I recommend almonds, Brazil nuts, cashews, pecans, pistachios, macadamias, filberts, and walnuts; and sunflower, sesame, flax, and pumpkin seeds. These delicious natural foods are high in nutrients and healthful unsaturated fats.
I got to agree with Dr. Fuhrman on this one. Check out this sampling of nuts and seeds in my house right now:


Yup, there’s raw almonds, cashews, peanuts, sunflower seeds, and ground flaxseed in there—yum!

A Bowl Full of Cherries

The Cardio Blog relays some research linking consumption of sour cherries to a lower risk of metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular disease. Take a look:
For me, freshly-picked cherries are synonymous with summer. Eating those sweet morsels of goodness on a hot summer's day is about as perfect as it gets. If you love cherries as much as me, there's good news -- They're great for you, especially your heart. There's a downside to this news though -- Sour cherries are better for you than those of the sweet variety. Tart cherries are associated with a lower risk of metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular disease, more so than sweet cherries like Bing cherries. The reason that tart cherries are more beneficial than sweet ones if that tart cherries have more antioxidants, and we all know antioxidants are great for whatever ails you.
I like the sound of that! Feast your eyes on my big bowl of cherries. And yes, they are sour—they don’t like having their picture taken:


The only bad thing here—other than my creepy web cam picture—would be that cherries are on the higher end of pesticide contamination risk. From Reduce Your Pesticide Exposure By 90%: