I know. Peanut Butter.
It is amazing.
It also stirs up crazy debate and emotions among people. We have one side that advocates how healthy it is, while other groups (I’m looking at you, primals!) will curse that it is a legume and therefore couldn’t possibly be healthy!
I for one do not buy in to this ‘legumes are unhealthy’ talk and think that the only real argument that people seem to have is that ‘cave men didn’t eat them,’ and that they contain phytic acid and lectin.
Well… The almond butter suggested as a substitute can contain higher concentrations of lectins and phytic acid than peanuts!
“But we aren’t eating almonds by the bucket load!” And I damn well aren’t eating peanut butter by the bucket load either.
I think it is important to rationalize here, and respond to what works well with you and what doesn’t. Moderation is also key in a lot of things in regards to how good or bad they are for us – almonds and peanuts included.
Having said that, I love peanut butter. I think it’s the perfect snack, and not only does it have great health benefits, but I really can’t believe given how delicious it is. When I was a kid I would put peanut butter on everything. EVERYTHING. That was until I tried a peanut butter and ketchup sandwich. I don’t recommend it.
Anyway, there are so many reasons why I love peanut butter, and it really is a snack that you can feel good about. This creamy delight taste good in all types of dishes, from a chicken satay to a chocolate peanut butter cups. It is amazingly versatile. It is great used as a sauce over cauliflower with the addition of some chili and sesame oil too.
It is also healthy – as long as you eat it in moderation. Of course I am speaking of only all natural peanut butter. There are many reasons to eat peanut butter other than just the good taste. Below you will find some of them as well as how to make some delicious, quick and healthy peanut butter for yourself.
As a side note, I think it is also worth mentioning that beyond its health benefits, peanut butter is cheap, readily available and can be stored in the pantry for use at a later date. Did I mention that it is delicious!? How can one not love it!
Health Benefits of Peanut Butter
- It’s full or protein
Peanut butter contains a great protein boost meaning it will help you feel full for longer. Protein is also great for repairing muscle and it makes peanut butter the perfect after gym snack.
If you were to eat 3.5 oz of peanut butter, you would get 25 grams of protein. Comparatively, 3.5 oz of chicken has about 27 grams of protein. Think about that for a second!
- It contains potassium
Potassium is an important element of your diet as it helps counter some of the problems with eating a lot of sodium. Potassium also aids in your metabolism and strengths your parasympathetic nervous system (to use science illiterates this involves the resting heart rate, normal organ functioning etc.).
Peanut butter actually contains quite a bit of potassium at over 200mg per serve (2 tablespoons) which puts it within a list of foods high in potassium.
- It contains unsaturated fat
This is the healthy type of fat which is actually good for you and helps your heart stay healthy. Many people mistakenly link fat in food to fat gain around their waist. Nothing could be further from the truth in regards to unsaturated, as studies have found people who eat more unsaturated fat have lower body fat than people who do not.
Not only is this type of fat beneficial, but it will keep you full for longer as it burns slower than carbohydrates do.
- It contains fiber
Peanut butter is also a great source of fiber. This is another important ingredient to help keep your body healthy. The fiber in peanut butter helps to keep your digestive system healthy, keeps you fuller for longer and helps to lower blood cholesterol.
Just don’t eat too much, otherwise it can have the opposite effect!
- It contains many other nutrients
On top of all the other good things contained in peanut butter mentioned above, there are also many more. Peanut butter also contains vitamin E, magnesium, B6 and zinc. These nutrients will help you build bones and boost your immunity among other things.
- Peanut butter is a great energy booster
As you can probably guess from all the benefits of peanut butter, it makes for a great energy booster. Its perfect first thing in the morning to give you energy throughout the day.
Making Peanut Butter
Of course all of these benefits can be negated somewhat if you buy a peanut butter that has lots of additives. Commercial brands can add artificial flavors and you will want to check the sugar and sodium content of any brand you buy.
Another alternative is to make your own. Making peanut butter is super easy (and delicious).
Peanut Butter Recipe
- 15 ounces shelled and skinned roasted peanuts
- 1 1/2 tablespoons of peanut oil
Simply put these ingredients into your food processor and process until it is smooth. You may need to stop and scrape down the sides. This should take a few minutes.
The peanut butter can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to two months.