Health Facts on Dry-Roasted Peanuts
Once shunned for their high fat content, nuts are now getting the credit they deserve for their nutritional benefits and can fit into virtually any healthy diets. And while peanuts aren't technically nuts, they share many of the same nutritional benefits and occupy the same "niche" in your diet. Snacking on dry-roasted peanuts can help you feel satisfied between meals, and you'll get some nutrients, like iron, that will help sustain your energy levels.
The Nutrition Basics
If you're looking for a low-cal snack, an ounce of peanuts can fit the bill. Each ounce contains 160 calories — which is within a "healthy" calorie range for snacking. Most of those calories come from 13 grams of fat, but some of them come from peanuts' 7 grams of protein and 5 grams of carbs. Don't let the high fat content scare you off though — peanuts get their fat from healthy unsaturated fatty acids, so they're a welcome addition to a heart-healthy diet.
A High-Protein Snack for Satiety
One of peanuts' biggest nutritional benefits is their protein content. Protein supplies amino acids: compounds that your body uses to maintain healthy muscle, a robust immune system and strong and elastic skin and hair. It's also relatively slow to digest (compared to carbohydrates) to keep you full longer after you eat, so you aren't tempted to go back for more snacks before your next meal. Protein also has a high thermic effect — which means it burns more calories during digestion than fat or carbs — so it will slightly boost your calorie burn for the day.
Packed with Iron for Energy
Dry-roasted peanuts aren't exactly a mega-source of vitamins and minerals — like, say, kale or broccoli — but they are a good source of iron. That makes them a great snack for supporting your active lifestyle, since iron is crucial for feeling alert and energized.
Iron actually helps you generate energy by helping to support your cells' metabolism, but it's also important for carrying oxygen to your cells and tissues via the red blood cells in your bloodstream. Lack of oxygen can make you feel drained, tired and sleepy — so getting a good supply of oxygen (thanks to iron) can keep you feeling active. An ounce of peanuts has about 2.5 milligrams of iron, which works out to roughly one-third of the iron needs for men and 14 percent of the needs for women.
Eating More Dry Roasted Peanuts
Of course, dry-roasted peanuts' portability makes them perfect for snacking, and keeping an ounce of them in your bag or office drawer can help you conquer a snack craving.
Peanuts are also great in healthy recipes. Add peanuts and cacao nibs to homemade energy bars for "chocolate and peanut butter" flavor, or add chopped peanuts to your Greek yogurt or oatmeal for satisfying crunch. Alternatively, add your fave spices to dry roasted peanuts and grind them in a food processor or blender to make your own flavored peanut butter. Peanut butter made with cinnamon and vanilla, or pumpkin pie spice, are sure to please.
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