Considered by many to be the great American snack, peanut butter has been a part of society for many decades now. Yes, it’s high in calories, but peanut butter, like sex, coffee and beer, can actually be good for you. That’s because this legume that originated in Brazil is high in unsaturated fat similar to that found in olive oil – if you eat an ounce per day, it helps reduce the risk of heart disease by 25%. Peanut butter is a great source of protein and is very rich in vitamin B3 (folate and niacin) which helps boost high-density lipoprotein (HDL, the good cholesterol) by as much as 30%. That is why peanut butter is a heart therapy you must not live without, particularly if you are on a running weight loss diet.
Peanut butter has also been shown to boost the body’s production of testosterone, which helps grow big muscles and aids men in having firmer erections. Want to sleep better at night? Peanut butter is the answer! The tryptophan content of peanuts – the amino acid that the body uses to make serotonin so our brain can be calmer – helps contribute to a restful sleep. But the benefits don’t stop there. The most exclusive property of peanut butter is its high content in Resveratrol, which fights certain cancers.
Peanut butter-lovers are also more likely to lose weight and keep it off than people following a more contingent low-fat diet, according to a study conducted by nutrition experts at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.
With that said, here is an ultimate peanut butter diet that will surely kick off those ugly fats for good, as long as you don’t eat more than 6 tablespoons of it a day.
- Peanut Butter & Banana Shake
Take one cup fat-free milk, one medium banana and two tablespoons peanut butter. Put into a blender and press Liquify. This single serving shake contains 384 calories, 18 grams protein, 46 grams of carbohydrates, 17 grams total fat and 5 grams fiber.
- Creamy Peanut-Butter Pudding
Put 2 tablespoons peanut butter in a bowl and microwave until it melts. Mix 1 cup of fat-free vanilla yogurt and top with 1 medium-sized banana sliced. Per serving contains 418 calories, 16 grams protein, 55 grams carbohydrates, 17 grams total fat, and 5 grams fiber.
- French Toast with Peanut-Butter Maple Syrup
Mix one egg, 1 tablespoon fat-free milk and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract in a large flat dish. Dip 2 slices of white or whole wheat bread in the egg mixture, flipping both sides until fully coated. Heat both sides of the toast in a non-stick skillet until the bread turns golden brown. Stir ¼ cup of light maple syrup and 4 tablespoon chunky peanut butter in a separate bowl and put inside a microwave until warm. Pour over the French toast. Each serving contains 365 calories, 13 grams protein, 35 grams carbohydrates, 19 grams total fat and 3 grams fiber.
If you love peanut butter but have concerns about its negative impact on your running and diet, fear no more. Peanut butter can be a healthy addition to any nutrition or fitness plan.