Is Peanut Butter Healthy?

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Lauren Zembron
Lauren Zembronhttps://www.healthyfoodforliving.com/
I am a 34 year old living outside of Boston with my wonderful husband, energetic daughter, sweet son, and playful dog. I have degrees in both psychology and guidance counseling, and have worked in a variety of school settings. I strive to find a balance between the two basic food philosophies of “eat to live” and “live to eat“. I believe that food should be (and is!) one of the great pleasures of leading a healthy lifestyle.
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If you are a fan of salty-sweet flavors, peanut butter might be on your favorites list. Made from roasted ground peanuts through adding and mixing, peanut butter is a popular flavor. 

Peanut butter can also be used in different sweet recipes. Be it your morning spread or your dessert mix. But is peanut butter healthy? Yes, it is. We’ll explore the answer in detail here. 

In this article, I will tell you how peanut butter is made, what are the good (and bad!) stuff in it, and how it affects our body. 

How is Peanut Butter Made?

is almond butter healthier than peanut butter

Making peanut butter is a tedious process that has undergone different changes since it was first made. Currently, the process consists of shelling the peanuts first. They are then dry roasted either by the batch or continuous method. 

After the peanuts are done, they are cooled down inside a unique blow-cooler cylinder instead of leaving them to dry. There is still some oil and moisture left in the nuts. 

The cooled peanuts then go through heat blanching or water blanching to remove any leftover outer shell. Once this step is done, they are sent for grinding. At this stage, the peanuts are sent through two different sizes of a grinder. 

Moving on, the first one creates a medium grind, while the second one makes a fine texture. Inside the fine grinder, salt, sugar, and vegetable oil stabilizers are added, making the peanut butter’s final taste.  

Once the peanut butter is ready, they have to be cooled down in a machine before being poured and sealed air-tight inside the jars. 

Different extra elements like peanut chunks or chocolate chunks can be added to the grinding process to make the butter special. This is how peanut butter is made in the factories.

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What are the Good Qualities of Peanut Butter?

is a peanut butter sandwich healthy

Peanut butter has good nutritional values, which makes it healthy for us. Let us take a look at them in detail:

Reduces Risks of Diseases:

Taking peanut butter regularly in a moderate amount can reduce the risks of death due to different diseases. It can also decrease the risk of getting heart disease. The constituents of peanut butter, like oleic acid, even improve the condition of our heart by managing blood cholesterol.

High Amount of Healthy Fats:

A 100-gram container of peanut butter contains almost 71% of fats. It means fatty calories make up most of the calories found in peanut butter. While it is a lot of calories and might sound unhealthy, the fat constituents of peanut butter are healthy

Excellent Antioxidant:

Peanuts are rich in antioxidants, almost as much as fruits are. Antioxidants protect our cells from free radicals that could cause heart diseases, cancers, etc. 

High-Quality Protein:

25 grams of protein can be found in every 100 grams of peanut butter. So, we can say that peanut butter is a pretty good source of protein. Peanut butter can be an excellent option for people who avoid animal products to get healthy proteins. 

Provides Us with Energy:

Peanut butter can keep our blood sugar levels stable. It has a sweet and salty lively taste that makes our mood happy and clear. The protein, fiber, and fats give us the energy boost we need before kick-starting our day.

Low Amount of Carbohydrates:

Although high in good calories, peanut butter contains a meager amount of carbs. This makes it keto-friendly for those following this diet. This low carb level also prevents the risk of gaining unwanted weight when eaten controllably.

Source of Various Minerals and Vitamins:

Vitamin B, E, iron, potassium, manganese, zinc, etc., are found in peanut butter, essential to keeping our bodies safe and sound. 

What are the Bad Bits of Peanut Butter?

is apple and peanut butter healthy

Peanut butter indeed has some drawbacks from the good qualities listed above. Here are some of them you should know:

Saturated Fats:

While peanut butter is loaded with healthy fats, some saturated fats are also found in it. Intake of too much unsaturated fat can build up the cholesterol in our blood and cause blockage.

Potential Allergic Reactions:

A lot of people are allergic to peanuts. The percentage is gradually increasing among the children of western countries. Allergic reactions due to peanuts can be fatal. 

It could also take you on a trip to the ER. So, if you have no clue about your allergies, you should get a check-up to avoid any accidents in the future. 

Harmful Aflatoxin Source:

As peanuts are grown underground, they can be in contact with a widespread mold called Aspergillus. Unprocessed peanut butter is more likely to contain this, especially when they are made in underdeveloped environments. 

Aflatoxin is a harmful substance that can lead to health hazards like liver cancer, delay in children’s mental development, or growth. 

Risk of Gaining Weight:

As peanut butter is a high-calorie spread, there is also a significant risk of gaining weight. If you are worried about gaining weight, you should probably steer clear of peanut butter or keep the consumption to moderate amounts by properly planning your diet. 

What Do You Think – Is Peanut Butter Healthy? 

Peanut butter is undoubtedly a healthy spread to have. People who like to show some creativity with their foods can also use peanut butter in different ways. 

It contains good nutritional values (mostly!). Moreover, it kicks up our energy level. It makes us productive, steering us clear of certain diseases and risks of diabetes. 

That is why a lot of diets include peanut butter snacks. They can be delicious and will add flavor to your bland food. And they won’t let you trail off your new healthy lifestyle!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

People have a lot of common questions about peanut butter. Here are some FAQs relating to peanut butter:

Does eating peanut butter make you fat?

Having peanut butter will not make you fat unless you have it in excess amounts (which is unlikely.)

Is it okay to have peanut butter every day?

Supposing you are a fan of peanut butter as your spread then no worries! You can have peanut butter every day. But remember, keep the amount in control!

Does peanut butter cause allergic reactions?

If you are allergic to peanuts, then, of course, you should steer clear of eating peanut butter. Allergic reactions due to peanuts can be quite severe. 

How can you eat peanut butter?

If you’ve got a jar of peanut butter at home and want to do something creative with it, you’ll be happy to hear that peanut butter can be used for many recipes! 

Peanut butter can be used in many dishes by making savory sauces mixed with oats, smoothies, ice cream, or other desserts!

Final Words

Can you tell if peanut butter is healthy from reading the information above? 

Yes! It’s hard to take too much peanut butter unless you are a huge fanatic! But it should always be taken in a controlled amount for all the calories it has. 

Peanut butter is a good choice for breakfast, snacks, or even dessert items!

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