Peanut butter is often associated with school lunches and snacks, but it turns out that adding this timeless treat to your diet has a few more benefits than you might think. While peanut butter was once considered an unhealthy food due to its high fat content, recent research indicates that the reality is quite different. Here, we’ll look at every aspect of the matter, from how peanut butter helps with weight management and overall health, to how satisfying it is to eat a childhood favorite. Prepare for surprises: it turns out that peanut butter should absolutely be part of your regular diet!
What does peanut butter contain?
In its most basic form, peanut butter is simply ground peanuts into a smooth paste. Some store-bought peanut butters contain added salt, sugar, vegetable oils, and fats that affect flavor and consistency. Peanut butter is usually sold salted or unsalted, with or without chunks.
Nutrition information and health benefits.
A serving of 2 tablespoons of peanut butter without additives contains 190 calories, 7 g of protein, 17 g of fat, 7 g of carbohydrates, 2 g of fiber and 3 g of sugar. Peanuts and peanut butter are rich in vitamins B and E, folate, magnesium, copper and manganese.
Peanut butter contains the three main macronutrients: carbohydrates, proteins and fats. However, it is relatively low in carbs and is therefore very suitable for a low carb diet. Peanut butter contains 3g of unhealthy saturated fat, but most of its fat is healthy unsaturated fat. Thanks to this and its high protein content, peanut butter is considered an excellent source of vegan protein.
Eating peanut butter does not cause a spike in blood sugar, so it is a good food for people managing their diabetes. Peanut butter is rich in antioxidants that may reduce arthritis symptoms and lower the risk of other chronic diseases, including heart disease. The healthy fats, niacin, magnesium, and vitamin E in peanut butter all contribute to good heart health.
Is eating peanut butter dangerous?
The biggest risk of eating peanut butter is that it can cause dangerous allergic reactions in people with peanut allergies. If you’re not one of them, moderate peanut butter consumption is unlikely to have any negative effects on your health.
Peanut butter is delicious and high in calories – and it’s a bad combination if you’re trying to avoid weight gain. It’s easy to eat a lot of them and accidentally add extra calories to your diet. So always pay attention to portion sizes and be sure to choose a type of peanut butter that does not contain added sugar or oil.
If the taste alone isn’t enough to make you a fan, consider some of its health benefits.
SATISFY YOUR APPETITE.
The combination of fiber and protein in peanut butter is a powerful appetite suppressant. A study published in the British Journal of Nutrition found that people who ate peanuts or peanut butter for breakfast saw their cravings for food decrease significantly for up to 12 hours. Researchers believe this may be because peanut butter is associated with increased production of peptide YY (PYY), a hormone that promotes feelings of fullness.
HAVE GORGEOUS SKIN AND HAIR.
Peanuts contain biotin, a B vitamin necessary for healthy hair and scalp in general. They also contain vitamin E, which nourishes the skin and protects it from harmful UV rays.
BETTER MANAGE TYPE 2 DIABETES.
Peanuts — and their buttery spread — are naturally low in carbs and so may help prevent blood sugar spikes. They are a quick and easy low carb snack perfect for people with type 2 diabetes.
Of course, you can’t eat the whole jar of this creamy spread by the spoonful. Any peanut butter lover knows that this product is high in calories (nearly 100 per tablespoon), so it’s best to stick to a serving of two tablespoons. And since all peanut butters are not created equal, look for natural varieties without added partially hydrogenated oils and other suspect ingredients.