Peanut butter is truly a gift that keeps on giving!
Packed with high protein content as well as a host of other essential elements, peanut butter not only helps one get the best nutrition in every spoonful, but it also helps to ensure easy weight loss without compromising on taste. While we know how healthy peanut butter is, a lot of us are almost clueless about the processes through which it is made. Peanut butter can be smooth or crunchy, sweetened or unsweetened, depending on your preferences.
With increasing awareness about good food and eating habits globally, thanks to a surge in informative resources about nutrition and food labels, natural peanut butter is suddenly at the forefront in the battle against bad eating habits, and avoiding excess sugar.
While global food trends are increasingly shifting towards natural and organic sources, it is often difficult to understand if a food item is as natural and healthy as it claims to be. Often, consumers have complained about food items marked as natural to pander to the health conscious crowd, but they hardly have the benefits associated with going natural. There is a lot of debate, both online and offline, about how healthy peanut butter can be, whether it is natural or regular. While both sides have made accurate claims, it still remains a contentious topic with few credible insights from health experts, if any.
What do you think? Is natural peanut butter healthier than regular peanut butter?
At The Butternut Co., we delved deep into this question and came up with some surprising answers. While it is an established fact that items marked ‘natural’ are perceived to have a better nutritional value than regular food items, in fact, the difference between quality regular and natural peanut butter is very little.
They say, the devil is in the details, and peanut butter labels are no different. While the overall quality of peanut butter is likely to change from brand to brand, it usually has similar nutritional values in terms of nutrients (i.e. proteins, vitamins, minerals, potassium) and the calories are usually the same. If it is highly processed, the nutritional value will have changed and what you have is a food item with potential side-effects, if consumed inappropriately.
A good indicator of the level of processing that a food item has gone through lies in the food labels. Healthy peanut butter usually has almost zero sugar content, no preservatives in the form of high sodium content and few natural ingredients. To retain its natural goodness, it undergoes minimal processing.
In comparison, some brands of regular peanut butter claim to be low-fat, but have several other unhealthy additives in the form of added sugar, preservatives such as sodium to increase shelf life, etc. These can spike blood sugar levels, especially among diabetics.
Nutritionists insist on consuming natural peanut butter since it helps lose weight easily, helps combat cholesterol and heart diseases, plus ensures a full stomach without overloading our system with excess food. For the fitness enthusiasts, natural unsweetened peanut butter can provide the extra energy needed during a gruelling workout. When in a hurry, just take a spoonful of natural peanut butter and pop it into your mouth. Alternatively, you can make yourself that staple of bodybuilding diets worldwide – the peanut butter jelly sandwich, or if you prefer a bit of fruit, you could put a scoop of it on top of sliced apples.
The next time you want to buy healthy peanut butter without being confused about how healthy it is for you and your family, you know where to look. Go Natural!