Peanuts get a bad wrap for being the unhealthy nut and almonds/walnuts are known for being the best. While I agree the latter has awesome health benefits, food is not as black/white as we like to make it. Every ‘natural’ food contains unique health benefits, vitamins and nutrients that even modern research doesn’t fully know just yet. Case and point, we are always hearing about the newest and latest ‘superfood’ like resveratrol found in grapes/wine. If all we ate is the newest superfood (I am using this term lightly) then we are missing out on TONS of other amazing nutrient rich foods that benefits may not be recognized just yet! Instead just focusing on ‘superfoods’, we reap the nutrition benefits anytime we make a healthy choice including lean proteins, fruits, vegetables, healthy fats and whole grains. That brings me to one of my all time FAVORITE foods… peanuts! I grew up eating these with my grandpa and munching on them at softball parks so when I learned in college that peanuts weren’t ‘healthy’, I was disappointed, to say the least. The more I learn/know the more I understand that nutrition is ever evolving and not as black/white as we would like to make it. Peanuts have so many amazing benefits and I found them to be one of my own personal superfoods!! I haven’t discussed my own health issues much just because they are ever evolving and honestly I don’t have all the answers but I finally got diagnosed last year with pancreatic divisum- this means instead of having a single pancreatic duct, that helps digest/breakdown protein/fats and helps regulate blood glucose (just to name a few of its roles), I have two ducts- which in turn affects my nutrient absorption, blood glucose, causes serve abdominal pain, nauseas, weakness and occasionally flare-ups pancreatitis. 10% of the population has pancreatic divisum and will never know because they don’t have any symptoms unfortunately, I wasn’t that lucky. I met only one other person who has my exact same problem and it was the nurse at my dentists office… she saw that I had chronic pancreatitis written on my chart and started to ask questions about it, I tried to brush her off by telling her, "oh it’s a long story", but then she revealed that she had the same problem! Of course my dentist visit turned into a two-hour discussion between her, the dentist and myself. Her problem was a little more severe than mine and she unfortunately ends up in the hospital at least once per year, I haven’t gotten to that point yet. Thankfully, my chosen craft was being a dietitian (God works in amazing ways) and only way to help control my symptoms is through nutrition. Since I was 22 (when I had my first ‘attack’ with pancreatitis I have learned what foods my body can and can’t handle and eat accordingly to stay out of the hospital and keep feeling good!! Which is why peanut butter is one of my superfoods! Peanuts have the perfect balance between monounsaturated fats (healthy fats) and protein. They also contain amazing nutrients/minerals that are perfect for someone with any type of GL issue due to the high content of magnesium! So here is the official nutrient breakdown: ¼ cup, raw peanuts:
- Protein: 9.4 grams
- Carbohydrates: 5.9 grams
- Fat: 17.9 grams (mono and polyunsaturated)
- Fiber: 3.10 grams
- Calories: 206.9
- Biotin: 26.3 mcg
- Copper: 0.42 mg
- Magnesium: 61.32 mg
- Manganese: 0.71 mg
- Vitamin E: 3.04 mg
- Calcium: 33.58 mg
- Folate: 87.60 mcg
- Iron: 1.67 mg
- Phosphorus: 137.24 mg
- Omega 6: 5.68 g
- Also contains small amounts of resveratrol (bet cha didn’t know that)!!
With all this nutrition information I think it is time we stop giving peanuts a bad wrap and start enjoying them again! So of my favorite ways to eat peanut butter:
¼ cup of peanuts for a snack
Tablespoon of peanut butter on Ezekiel toast with my chia jam recipe
mix it into my overnight oats
just eat it with an apple or banana
By the spoonful for an evening dessert
Below is an easy recipe for you to make your own peanut butter at home!
Homemade Peanut Butter
- In a high powered food processor add in the peanuts no more than 2 cups per time to insure even processing. Turn on the processor and process! At first the peanuts will turn into a grainy texture, then it will start to clump together... keep processing!! Around minute 10 the peanut butter will be smooth creamy and perfect! When you are happy with the consistency stop, scoop out and enjoy!!
- **You can use any type of peanuts you would like, roasted, plain or salted!
Nothing I love more than peanut butter!!!
Do you eat a ridiculous amount of peanut butter like me?! If so, what is your favorite way to eat it?