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The Power of Protein: Why Peanuts Pack a Punch

According to the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, more than 98% of children in the U.S. can enjoy peanuts and other various peanut products safely. Considering that the humble peanut is one of America’s most-beloved foods — and an incredibly nutritious one, at that — that’s very good news. While a lot of us love nothing more than to snack on a handful of roasted peanuts or enjoy starting our day with a piece of whole grain toast with peanut butter on top, you might not realize just how good this little legume is for your body. And when it comes to high protein snacks, peanuts definitely come out on top.

Why is protein so important?
The National Peanut Board reports that protein is essential for bone and muscle health, as well as the health of our skin, blood, and cartilage. Foods that contain protein are vital for amino acid development, too. Amino acids help our bodies produce coenzymes and hormones, among other things. Plus, a diet with enough protein can help with weight management, as it’s what can keep you feeling full for a longer period of time. Basically, peanut protein is a must-have if you want to stay healthy and fit!

Why are peanuts a great protein-rich snack?
For one thing, the protein in roasted peanuts, raw peanuts, and other peanut products beats out the amounts found in all other nuts. In fact, just an ounce of oil-roasted peanuts contains nearly 8 grams of protein that’s actually good for your heart. If you want to obtain your protein through plants (rather than exclusively through meat products), peanuts really do pack the biggest punch. Due to their size, peanuts are a great on-the-go food — and often, that’s when people need a snack the most. And because peanuts are so versatile, they can be enjoyed in a smoothie, on crackers or celery sticks, in a sandwich, or on their own without a lot of preparation. Their nutritional value and ease of transport means that families can enjoy a convenient snack option without sacrificing on overall quality.

Do peanuts provide other benefits besides protein?
Of course they do! In addition to all the protein in roasted peanuts and other peanut products, you’ll also find fiber, phosphorus, vitamin E, magnesium, folate, copper, niacin, manganese, and bioactives. Keep in mind that these nutrients found in peanuts have also been linked to disease prevention. That means that the protein in roasted peanuts you and your family regularly enjoy can power you through your next workout¬†and¬†could help you lead healthier, longer lives.

If you’ve been on the hunt for snacks or meals that are protein-rich, don’t forget about America’s favorite nut: the peanut. From the traditional PB and J to peanut-dense protein powders, there are so many good reasons to ensure this lovely legume finds a permanent place in your diet.

Sources:

National Peanut Board: “The Power of Protein”

National Peanut Board: “What’s So Fab About Protein?”

The Peanut Institute: “Peanut Ebite: Vol. 9.4”

The Peanut Institute: “Peanut Power”

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