Nuts about… nuts? Almonds, Brazil nuts, cashew nuts, hazelnuts, macadamias, pecans, pine nuts, pistachios, walnuts, or peanuts? If your preferred is the latter, then March should be your favourite month, because it’s Peanut Month!
Nuts, in general, is an essential part of our diets as it forms part of oils, it’s an excellent snack, are used in cakes, salads, with veggies, etc. Let’s have a look at peanuts’ benefits, fun (and weird) facts, and how to include them in your diet with some great recipes.
Benefits of Peanuts
Peanuts have health, heart, and weight loss benefits. First of all, if you think that peanuts don’t have nutritional value, you’re wrong because just as almonds, walnuts, and cashews, they do. Peanuts have many of the same health benefits, such as phytochemicals that act as antioxidants, and just because they’re cheaper, they shouldn’t be ignored.
Peanuts are also high in good fats and low in saturated fats. Peanuts actually help prevent heart disease by lowering cholesterol levels. They are also warriors in fighting small blood clots from forming, reducing your risk of having a heart attack or stroke.
Not eating peanuts because of your diet? Packed protein foods help you feel fuller with lower calories, for sure, but peanuts are only second to almonds when it comes to protein count. Factually, if you include a moderate amount of peanuts in your diet, you won’t gain weight – peanuts could help them lose weight.
Fun & Weird Facts About Peanuts & Peanut Butter
- It takes about 540 peanuts to make a 340g jar of peanut butter.
- The average adult eats peanut butter and jam three times a month.
- Women and children prefer creamy peanut butter, while most men opt for chunky.
- Boiled peanuts are considered a delicacy in South America. Freshly harvested peanuts are boiled in brine until they are of a soft bean-like texture.
- Goober, a nickname for peanuts, comes from ‘nguba’, the Congo language name for peanuts.
- Peanuts are sometimes called ‘ground nuts’ or ‘ground peas’ because peanuts grow underground.
- The nub between two peanut halves is an embryo.
- Peanut butter was originally made for people with no teeth.
- In a high-pressure environment, peanut butter can be turned into diamonds…
- The furthest thrown a peanut has ever been thrown was 9 meters!
How To Include Peanuts in Your Diet
- Instead of snacking on biscuits or a piece of cake have a handful of raw or dry-roasted peanuts.
- Combine peanuts with low-energy-dense foods (such as vegetables).
- If you are vegan or vegetarian, peanuts are a good protein substitute for meats, fish, and eggs.
- Eat them with vitamin C rich foods and add them to drinks (such as tomato, orange and citrus juices) to boost your iron absorption.
- There is no need to soak or remove the skin of peanuts. In fact, the skin is high in phytochemicals that have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
- Roasting peanuts enhances their flavour but has little impact on their fat content. This is because they are physically dense and cannot absorb much oil, even if they are submerged in it.
- Salted peanuts are not recommended due to their higher sodium content, especially if you have high blood pressure.
There are numerous ways to use peanuts in food such as baking them into cookies or pies, making a peanut butter and banana sandwich, adding peanut butter to hummus, topping your yoghurt with peanuts, adding peanuts to your stir fry or noodles dish, mixing peanuts into a trail mix and dipping spring rolls into Thai peanut sauce.
Here are 5 of our favourite peanut recipes you have to try –
- Peanut Butter and Jelly Puff Pastry Braids
- Crunchy Chicken-Peanut Chopped Salad
- Grilled Pork Meatball Kabobs
- No-Bake Peanut Butter-Fudge Ice-Cream Pie
- Chocolate Peanut Butter-Fudge Bars
Happy Peanut Month, Sandton!