Peanuts are very popular around world. Many cuisines feature peanut dishes. Pad Thai is a very popular dish that features peanuts and sauce with them. Approximately 29 million metric tons of the legumes are produced around the planet every year. In the United States, the average person will eat about six pounds of peanut products each year. There has been a lot of talk in recent years about the health facts about peanuts. Information about peanut allergy symptoms and peanut allergy causes has overtaken information about peanut benefits. Here are some of the good you can do yourself when you eat peanuts:
- Peanuts are great for getting good, healthy protein. Every serving of peanuts carries with it about seven grams of protein. A serving is determined to be one ounce. Not only are you getting good quality protein when you eat peanuts but the legumes also contain important amino acids. These are needed for human growth. This is one of the health facts about peanuts most people know.
- Peanuts are packed with the kinds of fats that are needed the most. While most people could ve forgiven for thinking that all fats are bad for you, the human body needs some fat. Peanuts have a lot of monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA). The main one that you can get from peanuts is oleic acid. MUFAs are great to help lower your levels of bad cholesterol (otherwise called LDL) and increase levels of good cholesterol (also known as HDL). People who have a diet that is high in MUFAs have lower chances for developing heart disease or suffering from a stroke.
- Peanuts are full of polyphenolic antioxidants. The main antioxidant in this family that cane be found in peanuts is the p-coumaric acid. Because this compound has been linked with decreased levels of nitrosamines (carcinogens that are found in the stomach), it has been said that eating peanuts can reduce the risk of stomach cancer.
- Peanuts are also loaded with resveratrol. This is another compound in the same family of polyphenolic antioxidants. This can protect people from a host of cancers, degenerative neurological disorders, Alzheimer’s disease, heart disease and even some fungal or viral infections. Resveratrol has also been linked to a lower incidence of strokes. It has been found that it can protect blood vessels from damage. It lowers angiotensin activity while increasing the amount of nitric oxide. Nitric oxide is a powerful vasodilator hormone while angiotensin is responsible for the constriction of blood vessels and the elevation of blood pressure.
- Peanuts are full of Vitamin E. This is another of the lesser known health facts about peanuts. Each 100 grams of peanuts has about eight grams of Vitamin E. Also called alpha tocopherol, Vitamin E is good to protect the structures of the body from damage caused by free radicals.
- Peanuts are excellent sources of Vitamin B. If you are looking to get more pantothenic acid, thiamin, niacin, riboflavin and folate into your diet, eating peanuts is a good way to start. If you eat about 100 grams of peanuts, you will get more than 85% of your daily requirements for these important vitamins.
- Peanuts are also packed with minerals. We all need to get manganese, potassium, copper, iron, calcium, zinc, selenium and magnesium into our diets and peanuts have all of them.
- Peanuts do pack a punch when it comes to calories. For every 100 grams of the legumes, you are getting about 567 calories.
If you want to get the most health benefits from your peanuts, you should consider boiling or roasting them before you eat them. New research shows that the bioavailability of all of the nutrients in peanuts is increased by a lot when they are roasted or boiled.
Certain foods are considered to be good and then they fall from grace only to be rediscovered later. Over the last few decades, eggs faced such a fate. They were good for you and then deemed bad because of the cholesterol in them. Peanuts have had a similar experience, For a while, all nuts (peanuts are actually not nuts but are legumes but they are lumped in with nuts) were considered to be bad because of their fat content. Now the health facts about peanuts are making them popular again.