Though peanuts are commonly the culprit in food allergies and are high in fat, the good outweighs the bad when it comes to this tasty legume.
Cholesterol free and low in sodium, peanuts have the surprising ability to protect the heart, fight cancer and aid in weight loss, among other things. Read on to see just how good for you peanuts really are.
Inside the Peanut
Peanuts are high in fat (the majority of which are the good monounsaturated kind) and high in protein (containing over 25 essential nutrients), niacin, thiamine, folate, vitamin B5, magnesium, phosphorus and zinc. They are also a good source of dietary fiber, iron, vitamin B6, and riboflavin with trace amounts of calcium. Peanuts contain more protein than any other nut, probably because peanuts are technically beans and not nuts.
What’s So Good About Peanuts?
Peanuts Protect the Heart – Consuming monounsaturated fats, the kind that are plentiful in peanuts, are a necessary part of everyone’s diet. Monounsaturated fats can actually lower your cholesterol. Even though peanuts contain good fats, it’s still wise to eat them in moderation since too much of anything can turn out to be a bad thing. A little more than a cup of peanuts alone meets your daily recommended amount of fat.
That leaves little room for anything else when you’re trying to maintain a reasonable weight. The large amount of folate in peanuts is also good for the heart, since it blocks the formation of homocysteine, which can harm blood vessels. Resveratrol is a powerful antioxidant in peanuts that further protects the arteries by clearing up blockages and clots that may form as a result of cholesterol and plaque buildup in the blood.
Peanuts Shield You From Cancer – Peanuts contain phytosterols that keep cancer from taking over the body. People who consume peanuts and products made from peanuts like peanut butter and peanut oil on a regular basis are less prone to be diagnosed with certain cancers, especially cancers that affect the sexual organs and the colon.
Peanuts Make it Easier to Lose Weight – The mix of protein and fiber found in peanuts makes you feel fuller longer and boosts your energy levels. Because fiber helps remove toxic buildup and excess waste in the body, that can eventually translate to pounds lost. The energy boost will give you the strength and motivation you need to exercise harder and longer.
Peanuts Are A Good Source of Coenzyme Q10 – CoQ10 reduces one’s risk for premature death, heart disease, Parkinson’s disease, gum disease, cancer, DNA mutations, and migraines.
Peanuts Protect the Brain – The huge amount of niacin in peanuts aids in the smooth flow of blood to and from the heart to other organs in the body, especially the brain. Keeping a steady flow of blood and oxygen to the brain reduces the risk for stroke and other neurological disorders.