Health Benefits Of Peanuts

This has been my favorite snack ever since. Though I've been eating peanuts for the past years but I don't exactly know its be...

This has been my favorite snack ever since. Though I've been eating peanuts for the past years but I don't exactly know its benefits. This time I made a research in order to satisfy my curiosity which I'm glad to share to you.

Also known as ground nuts, peanuts, along with beans and peas are members of the legume family which are the best sources of protein in the plant kingdom. Peanuts are fondly in wide variety of products. They can be eaten salted, dry roasted, boiled and even raw. They can be found in peanut brittle, peanut butter and candy bars and is often a major ingredient in mixed nuts. Peanuts are enriched with many noteworthy health-benefiting nutrients essential for optimum health and wellness.

Health benefits of Peanuts

  • Peanuts are rich in energy (567 calories per 100 g) and contain health benefiting nutrients, minerals, antioxidants and vitamins that are essential for optimum health.
  • They compose sufficient levels of mono-unsaturated fatty acids especially oleic acid. It helps lower LDL or "bad cholesterol" and increase HDL or "good cholesterol” level in the blood. Research studies suggest that Mediterranean diet, which is rich in monounsaturated fatty acids help to prevent coronary artery disease and strokes by favoring healthy blood lipid profile.
  • The kernels are a good source of dietary protein; compose fine quality amino acids that are essential for growth and development. 
  • Research studies have shown that peanuts contain high concentrations of poly-phenolic antioxidants, primarily p-coumaric acid. This compound has been thought to reduce the risk of stomach cancer by limiting formation of carcinogenic nitrosamines in the stomach.
  • Peanuts are an excellent source of resveratrol, another polyphenolic antioxidant. Resveratrol has been found to have protective function against cancers, heart disease, degenerative nerve disease, Alzheimer's disease, and viral/fungal infections.
  • Furthermore, studies suggest that resveratrol reduce stroke risk by altering molecular mechanisms in the blood vessels (reducing susceptibility to vascular damage through decreased activity of angiotensin, a systemic hormone responsible for blood vessel constriction that would elevate blood pressure), and by increasing production of vasodilator hormone, nitric oxide.
  • Recent research studies suggest that roasting/boiling enhances antioxidant bio-availability in the peanuts. It has been found that boiled peanuts have two and four-fold increase in isoflavone antioxidants biochanin-A and genistein content, respectively. (Journal of agricultural and food chemistry).
  • The kernels are an excellent source of vitamin E (α-tocopherol); containing about 8 g per100 g. vitamin E is a powerful lipid soluble antioxidant which helps maintain the integrity of cell membrane of mucus membranes and skin by protecting from harmful oxygen free radicals.
  • The nuts are packed with many important B-complex groups of vitamins such as riboflavin, niacin, thiamin, pantothenic acid, vitamin B-6, and folates. 100 g of peanuts provide about 85% of RDI of niacin, which contribute to brain health and blood flow to brain.
    Studies have shown that women who had a daily intake of 400 micrograms of folic acid before and during early pregnancy reduced their risk of having a baby born with a serious neural tube defect by up to 70%.
  • Peanuts are good source of tryptophan, an essential amino acid which is important for the production of serotonin, one of the key brain chemicals involved in mood regulation. When depression occurs, a decreased amount of serotonin may be released from the nerve cells in the brain. Tryptophan may raise serotonin’s antidepressant effects when there is an increased amount of serotonin in the blood.
  • The nuts are rich source of minerals like copper, manganese, potassium, calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, and selenium.
    It helps boost memory power, also known as brain food. This is due to their vitamin B3 or niacin content whose many health benefits include normal brain functioning.
Just a hand full of peanuts per day provides enough recommended levels of phenolic anti-oxidants, minerals, vitamins, and protein. So never forget to include peanuts in your snack.

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