Peanuts are a popular food item within the United States. Every year, the average American will eat over six pounds of these nuts in a variety of forms. Peanut butter, in particular, is a favorite peanut product. Many people also choose to use peanut oil for frying meat, poultry, and fish.
While peanuts are actually a legume rather than a nut, they still bear that name. It’s interesting to note that there are also different types of peanuts grown within the United States. The four basic types are Runners, Spanish, Valencias, and Virginias. While some people may prefer one type of peanut over another, there’s a good chance that they may enjoy them all.
Peanut Nutritional Values
A single serving of peanuts is about one ounce. The Food and Drug Administration reports that just one serving can provide seven grams of protein. Given this, peanuts are considered to be an excellent source of daily protein.
Many Americans are concerned with the nutritional value of the foods they eat. Studies do show, however, that peanuts and peanut products have nutritional value. One study in particular examined the diets of over 15,000 children and adults within this country. The results showed that when these individuals ate peanuts and peanut products, they were receiving higher amounts of the Recommended Daily Allowances for these vitamins and minerals:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin E
Furthermore, when the participants within this study consumed peanuts and peanut products, they were also receiving more fiber in their diets. This basically signifies that when people eat peanuts, they have higher-quality diets than those that don’t.
Concerns Regarding Peanut Allergy Reactions
Food allergies are an obvious concern. Roughly four percent of both adults and children less than 18 do have some type of allergy, however. Children under five years of age tend to experience a higher percentage of food allergies.
Most food allergies, or almost 90% of them, are caused by the following foods:
- Tree nuts
- Crustacean shellfish
Many parents may be concerned about their children having peanut allergy reactions. While this is understandable, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases reported that over 98% of children within the United States can safely consume peanuts and products that contain peanuts. This is excellent news for adults and children alike.
Learn More Facts About Peanuts
In addition to learning about the nutritional value of peanuts and the potential for peanut allergy reactions, there’s a good chance you’re interested in a few more details. Were you aware, for example, that there’s no such thing as GMO peanuts on the market? In fact, 99.9% of the peanuts now available are the same as their ancestors.
Another interesting fact about peanuts is that the FDA regulates peanut butter labeling. When you see a jar of peanut butter at your local market, it must contain a minimum of 90% peanuts in order to bear a peanut butter label. While many shoppers may reach for a jar that appears to contain peanut butter, it’s always a good practice to read those labels.
Since peanuts have quite a few nutritional benefits, it makes sense to add more of them to your diet. While you may just want to have a handful or two of peanuts for an afternoon snack, why not explore a few new recipes? You may discover that there are several dishes that you want to add to your culinary repertoire!