Power Up with Peanuts
Plant-Based Protein for Your Routine.
School is back in session, but unfortunately for adults, we don’t get a midday recess to recharge our energy. And sometimes, that means reaching for another cup of coffee or a handful of sugary snacks to help us cross the finish line.
But there’s a better way; The plant-based protein in peanuts and peanut butter can help you ease the daily grind into a much smoother experience — providing more energy, more focus, and less stress. And all it takes is as little as one serving per day!
(Looking for a daily serving of healthy tips, research and recipes? Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and Pinterest!)
How Powerful are Peanuts?
At 7g per serving, peanuts have the most protein of any nut. That’s in addition to 19 crucial vitamins and minerals our bodies need to feel our best — including several which are classified as “hard to get.”1
Eating Well to Feel Good.
In a study of college students (ages 18-33), peanut and peanut butter consumption was associated with:
- Improved memory
- Reduced stress
- Decreased anxiety and depression2
Staying Energized and Focused
Due to their combination of plant-based protein and healthy fats, peanuts are considered an energy-dense food,3 which means your body can use it for fuel. But that’s not all:
- Burn more calories at rest. One trial noted an 11% increase in subjects’ REE (resting energy expenditure) after 8 weeks of peanut consumption.4
- Peanuts have a low glycemic index. That means they won’t spike your blood sugar the way sugary snacks or sodas might, which is what leads to the feeling of “crashing” later.
- Keep Your Mind Sharp. Peanuts contain the antioxidant resveratrol, which has shown to increase blood flow to the brain.5
- Greater satisfaction with fewer calories. 18% of calories from peanuts and peanut products are not absorbed by the body — which means they can help you stay satisfied without weighing you down.
Health Habits for the Long Haul
In addition to day-to-day benefits, eating peanuts is associated with:
- 21% lower risk of premature death6
- 24% reduced risk of death from heart disease
- Reduced risk for colorectal, gastric, pancreatic and lung cancers.7
(Check out our blog for more ways peanuts can help you Live a Longer Life!)
Making Your Plan
Now that we know ‘why’ you should start incorporating peanuts into your daily diet, let’s look at ‘when’ you should eat them to provide the biggest benefits. (And with most things in health and nutrition, it all comes down to consistency, and maintaining a plan.)
“I feel exhausted in the morning.”
What we eat the night before can have a big impact on how we feel the next day. Try having 1 serving (1 oz., or about 1 handful) of peanuts as an evening snack to calm any cravings, and avoid loading up on unhealthy processed or fatty foods.
“I’m hangry and run down by the afternoon.”
If you’re feeling tired and snack-y before lunch, try adding a serving of peanuts to your breakfast. Having peanut butter on multigrain toast provides a 1-2 punch of protein and fiber for greater satiety (or satisfaction) to help you through lunchtime and beyond.
“I snack too much before (and after) dinner.”
Try out recipes rich in fruits and vegetables like the Mediterranean or MIND Diets, which help satisfy hunger AND have shown great additional benefits for health — including a lower risk of Alzheimer’s Disease8, and a delayed onset of Parkinson’s Disease9. Or, just enjoy a handful of peanuts as an after-dinner snack!
(Learn more about the benefits of plant-based diets here.)
Conquer Your Routine with Plant-Based Protein.
Now that we’ve covered the why and how of your peanut plan, it’s time for the best part: putting it into action! With a daily serving of peanuts, you’ll soon be enjoying more energy, less stress, and maybe even a little more room in your waistline.
If you need some peanut-powered recipe ideas to get started, we’ve got you covered with a plethora of peanutty goodness that can fit into any busy schedule.
- USDA National Nutrient Database.
- Parilli-Moser, I., et al., Consumption of peanut products improves memory and stress response in healthy adults from the ARISTOTLE study: A 6-month randomized controlled trial. Clinical Nutrition, 2021.https://doi.org/10.1016/j.clnu.2021.09.020
- Arya SS, Salve AR, Chauhan S. Peanuts as functional food: a review. J Food Sci Technol. 2016 Jan;53(1):31-41. doi: 10.1007/s13197-015-2007-9. Epub 2015 Sep 19. Review. PubMed PMID: 26787930; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4711439.
- Alper CM, Mattes RD. Effects of chronic peanut consumption on energy balance and hedonics. Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord. 2002 Aug;26(8):1129-37. PubMed PMID: 12119580.
- Kennedy DO, Wightman EL, Reay JL et al. Effects of resveratrol on cerebral blood flow variables and cognitive performance in
humans: a double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover investigation. Am J Clin Nutr. 2010;91(6):1590-97.
- Luu HN, Blot WJ, Xiang YB, et al. Prospective evaluation of the association of nut/peanut consumption with total and cause-specific mortality [published correction appears in JAMA Intern Med. 2016 Aug 1;176(8):1236]. JAMA Intern Med. 2015;175(5):755-766. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2014.8347.
- Zhang D, Dai C, Zhou L, et al. Meta-analysis of the association between nut consumption and the risks of cancer incidence and cancer-specific mortality. Aging (Albany NY). 2020;12(11):10772-10794. doi:10.18632/aging.103292.
- Morris MC, Tangney CC, Wang Y, Sacks FM, Bennett DA, Aggarwal NT. MIND diet associated with reduced incidence of Alzheimer’s disease. Alzheimers Dement. 2015 Sep;11(9):1007-14. doi: 10.1016/j.jalz.2014.11.009. Epub 2015 Feb 11. PMID: 25681666; PMCID: PMC4532650.
- Metcalfe-Roach A, Yu AC, Golz E, Cirstea M, Sundvick K, Kliger D, Foulger LH, Mackenzie M, Finlay BB, Appel-Cresswell S. MIND and Mediterranean Diets Associated with Later Onset of Parkinson’s Disease. Mov Disord. 2021 Apr;36(4):977-984. doi: 10.1002/mds.28464. Epub 2021 Jan 6. PMID: 33404118; PMCID: PMC8248352.