Peanuts, also known as groundnuts, are members of the legume family along with beans and peas. These are considered the best sources of protein in the plant kingdom. Peanuts can be consumed in different forms like raw, salted, boiled or dry roasted and it is found in a wide variety of products ranging from peanut cookies, healthy peanut butter, no-bake oatmeal, and peanut bites, peanut bars, etc.
Packed with healthy fats and high-quality protein, peanuts are an excellent source for nutrition but are fairly high in calories which makes its consumption quantity to be reduced to a handful and not more. Though it is an exceptionally good source of protein, ensure that you are not allergic to its proteins, arachin and conarachin which are in abundance that cause life-threatening reactions to some.
Take a look at some of the incredible health benefits of having peanuts:
Good for muscle
Peanuts contain vitamin B that prevent muscle cramps and spasms, increases energy and helps the body absorb protein and fat effectively. It also boosts metabolism and makes a perfect pre and post workout food.
Peanuts contain monounsaturated fats and are excellent sources of fiber which results in lowering of LDL or the bad cholesterol levels. The copper content present in peanuts aid in increasing good cholesterol levels and reduces bad cholesterol.
Being a good source of tryptophan, an essential amino acid considered to be vital for serotonin production, peanuts can be consumed to regulate a person’s mood. Depression results in a reduced release of serotonin from the nerve cells in the brain and tryptophan in peanuts is known to raise serotonin’s antidepressant effects when there are higher levels of serotonin in the blood.
Peanuts are tagged as “brain food” due to the presence of vitamin B3 or niacin content. It has a positive effect on the functioning of the brain and helps boost memory power. Also, being a good source of vitamin E, it protects one against Alzheimer’s and age-related cognitive decline.
Protects the heart
Consuming nuts are linked to protecting the heart and reducing the risk of developing heart diseases. Peanuts are a rich source of heart-friendly monosaturated fats and antioxidants like oleic acid. Have a handful of nuts and peanuts at least three to four times a week to reduce the risk of coronary and cardiovascular diseases.
Rich in protein
Peanuts contain high levels of protein content and significant amounts of zinc, iron, magnesium, and vitamins like vitamin D. The high iron and protein content in peanuts make them an excellent replacement for red meat, especially for vegetarians and vegans.
Promotes weight loss
Though peanuts are quite high in calories, consuming it in moderate quantities regularly is associated with a lowered risk of weight gain. Research has proved that those who ate nuts at least twice a week are less likely to put on weight than those who did not eat them.
Women who took 400 micrograms of folic acid on a daily basis before and during early pregnancy had lower risks of having a baby born with serious neural tube defects. And peanuts containing a good amount of folate it is recommended to have it on a regular basis in a moderate quantity.
Peanuts help prevent gallstones and eating an ounce of nuts, peanut or healthy peanut butter a week helps in lowering the risk of developing gallstones by 25%.
Protects from cancer
Peanuts contain a form of phytosterol called beta-sitoserol (SIT) in high concentrations. They not only protect you from cardiovascular diseases by interfering with cholesterol absorption but also protect you against cancer by inhibiting the growth of tumor.