Standard blood tests revealed the cholesterol levels in each of the test subjects. The results of the controlled diets found that 3 ounces of pistachios lowered the cholesterol level in the blood by 8.4 percent. In addition, low-density lipoprotein (LDL) or more commonly known asth bad cholesterol was reduced by 11.6 percent.
The cholesterol ratios (total to HDL, LDL to HDL, and non-HDL to HDL) that are known measures of cardiovascular disease risk also exhibited a noticeable decrease. Additionally, researchers looked at antioxidant levels which negatively effect the formation of plaque in arteries.
The 3 ounce pistachio diet reduced the presence of plaque forming lipoproteins like oxidized LDL compared to standard diets. Increased lutein levels in the the blood also correlated to a reduction in oxidized LDL. The study concluded that a balanced diet mixed with pistachio nuts may reduce person's cholesterol and risk for cardiovascular disease.