Peanut Butter: Benefits, Side Effects, Nutrition Value and Facts

Peanut Butter: Benefits, Side Effects, Nutrition Value and Facts

Peanut butter is obtained by grounding the peanuts and then making a paste. It is either smooth and creamy like butter or crunchy. Peanut butter is usually the key ingredient for chocolate cakes, brownies and cookies.

Peanut butter, which is almost like a staple food eaten at breakfast or perhaps any time of the day, in several countries around the world, has several interesting recipes associated with it. Peanut butter sandwiches, peanut butter cookies, peanut butter fingers or even peanut butter pancakes, there is absolutely no end to the variety of peanut butter recipes available.

Peanut Butter Benefits

Peanuts health benefits are plenty. So, instead of pondering over the question is peanut butter really good for you, let us find out why peanut butter is good for you. It is discussed below:

Promotes a Healthy Heart
Peanut butter and heart health go well together. Over 80% of fat content in peanut butter is made up of unsaturated fats. Unsaturated fats are healthy fats that play a significant role in lowering bad cholesterol, thereby decreasing the chances of coronary heart diseases. It is a known fact that elevated cholesterol levels are not good for the heart. This is because excess cholesterol starts accumulating in the arteries that supply blood to the heart. With build up of cholesterol, the arteries become narrow, which may decrease blood flow to the heart. This can increase the risk of heart attack. All these heart problems can be avoided by including peanut butter (in moderation) in the diet. Research has also revealed that having peanuts helps to minimize the chances of heart problems. One can reap these heart health benefits by consuming peanut butter.

Maintains Skin Health
Is peanut butter good for your skin? Well, those asking this question would be glad to know that peanut nut butter forms an integral part of healthy skin diet. Peanut butter being a good source of healthy fats, can be helpful to improve skin complexion. Peanut butter is found to be high in vitamin B12 (Cobalamin), which promotes a healthy skin. Doctors opine that diet lacking in vitamin B12 causes a pale skin. This peanut product also contains riboflavin (vitamin B2), deficiency of which can make the skin dry and scaly. Vitamin B2 supplements are often used to get rid of skin problems like pustules, skin rash and rosacea. As peanut is a good source of both vitamin B12 and B12, its addition in the diet can certainly help to keep the skin healthy and glowing.

Promotes Healthy Hair
Is peanut butter good for your hair? As per peanut butter nutrition facts, the food product provides vitamin B2 in considerable amounts, it is definitely beneficial for proper hair growth. Peanut butter provides the much-needed nutrition to maintain healthy hair.

Contributes in Strengthening Bones
Is peanut butter good for your bones? Yes of course! Apart from notable vitamin content peanuts also contains essential minerals like calcium and magnesium. These nutrients are considered to be crucial role for proper development of bones. Thus, having a peanut butter sandwich can go a long way in maintaining bone health.

Prevent Birth Defects
Another important nutrient found in peanut butter is folic acid. Folic acid, especially during pregnancy is very important so as to deliver a healthy baby. This is because deficiency in folic acid in the early stages of pregnancy increases the risk of birth defects in the unborn baby. Therefore taking peanut butter during early pregnancy can decrease the chances of birth defects and promote healthy delivery.

Does Peanut Butter Contain Saturated Fats?

Yes, this peanut product has saturated fats and this is the reason why many ask is peanut butter good for you. Some argue that saturated fats being one of the constituents of peanut butter, this peanut product is not good for health. Even the most healthiest oil used for cooking contains saturated fats. So, does that mean that the cooking oil is unhealthy? Absolutely not! The point is although saturated fats are present in all healthy foods including peanut butter, it is in small amounts. So, one really does not have to really worry about saturated fats in peanut butter, as long as it is eaten in moderation.

Hydrogenated oil has also been added in peanut butter. The process of hydrogenation infuses trans fats into the oil, thereby making it an unhealthy oil. However, the amount of hydrogenated oil added in peanut butter is negligible. So, the total trans fat content in peanut butter is also insignificant. In case, you are concerned about hydrogenated oil present in peanut butter, there are quite a few brands selling this peanut product devoid of trans fat. It is referred to as unrefined, natural or fat-free peanut butter and considered to be a better option healthwise.

Considering the health benefits of peanuts and peanut butter, go ahead and have peanut butter with bread during meals without fearing about those saturated or trans fats, provided it is consumed in moderation.

Peanut Butter Side Effects

Allergic reactions are the most common side effects of peanut butter. In addition, processed peanut butter might contain added trans-fatty acids (which have been shown to increase the risk of cardiocirculatory diseases; however there should be no worries when taken in moderation). A further risk is that when badly preserved, it can host the mold Aspergillus flavus, that produces aflatoxin (a very toxic and carcinogenic substance), so your best bet is to always go with natural peanut butter.

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