I must admit I grew up being more of a Nutella kid than a peanut butter one and didn’t really try peanut butter until I moved to the U.K. I started realizing that some people have an actual addiction to it and eat it one jar at a time. So I had to try it and now I like it enough to have it randomly.
But for those of you who are obsessed with it did you know that it is good for you?
You might think it’s too delicious to be good for you but it is not! Peanut butter is nutrient dense, and when eaten in moderation (yes moderation not in jars) it can be part of a healthy diet.
Let’s break it down nutritionally:
Protein: 2 tablespoons deliver 7grams of protein – not too shabby!
Fat: Peanut butter is a great source of fat delivering 16 grams per serving and that’s the good kind of fat known as MUFAS (monounsaturated fatty acids). MUFAS are great to help reduce LDL cholesterol levels and maintaining a good level of HDL cholesterol. (Little trick to remember which cholesterol needs to be high and which needs to be low that I use: HighDL, LowLD). But what about the saturated fats in it? Well it’s okay to consume a very small amount of them – 5-6% of your daily caloric intake.
Vitamins and minerals: Peanut butter is a great source of vitamin E and vitamin E keeps your immune system strong. 2 tablespoons of this goodness provide 20% of your daily dose of vitamin E. It also has B3, which is used by your body to convert nutrients to energy. It also contains calcium, potassium and magnesium.
Here are some best practices for consuming peanut butter and how to avoid turning this snack into an unhealthy addiction:
Less is more: The fewer ingredients it has the better. Doesn’t matter if it’s “all natural” check the list of ingredients for added sugar and added oil if there are there then it’s a no no.
Make it yourself: If you have some time on the weekend then always make things yourself! And all you need are peanuts, literally!
Don’t go nuts: Despite the goodness that it holds don’t rely on it as a main source of protein. Remember than two tablespoons have 188 calories. You can have lower calorie options with higher amounts of protein!
Try peanut powder: if you are obsessed but want less calories why not try peanut powder, with only 45 calories, 2 grams of fat and 5 of protein per 2 tablespoons it causes a lot less damage to your waistline.
Moderation is key: *warning about to insert a life lesson* my dad always told “everything in moderation whether it’s food or exercise” and this applies here too, actually it’s key!
Happy Healthy Living,