The pistachio, a member of the cashew family, is a small tree originating from Central Asia and the Middle East. The tree produces seeds that are widely consumed as food. They are high in plant sterols, substances that have been shown to be effective in reducing cholesterol. Antioxidants, which we know protect us from aging and diseases such as cardiovascular disease. Vitamin B6, which lowers the levels of the substance homocysteine, a substance associated with the appearance of atherosclerotic plaques and arteriosclerosis. They contain a high amount of potassium, which helps the body by dropping the levels of the stress hormone cortisol, more than any other nuts.