Peanut butter is indeed a healthy food that has a very high caloric value. Generally, it is found that less refined raw peanut butter is more nutritious than the refined version. Raw peanut butter has in it many of the beneficial nutrients that are essential for healthy skin.
Moreover, processed peanut butter is likely to contain trans-fatty acids. Increased consumption of food materials containing trans-fatty acids makes a person more prone to cardiovascular ailments and circulatory disorders. It is important that peanut butter is preserved well.
If badly preserved, it is found to host Aspergillus flavus, which produces a highly toxic and carcinogenic substance termed as aflatoxin. It is, therefore, always advisable to go for natural peanut butter.
Peanut butter is fairly high in dietary fibre content. It is estimated that the amount of fibre in peanut butter comes to eight per cent. This dietary fibre helps in the regulation of blood cholesterol and sugar levels. Dietary fibre also plays a positive role in minimising the risk of colon and rectal cancer. It also makes a person less prone to atherosclerosis.
Peanut butter is also rich in proteins and micro-nutrients such as Vitamin E and Vitamin B3. It is also an excellent source of many beneficial minerals such as iron, magnesium, potassium, copper and calcium. Vitamin E, abundantly present in peanut butter, is considered as a powerful liposoluble antioxidant.
Vitamin B3, also known as Niacin, is a water-soluble vitamin that helps in the recovery of cell DNA damage. Thus it makes a person less prone to the development of cancerous cells. Niacin is also associated with the enhancement of sexual bodily functions. It also ensures the effective secretion of sexual hormones. Studies indicate that peanut butter contains more antioxidants than apples and carrots.
Considering all these nutritious facts, peanut butter does deserve a place of prominence in a healthy diet. However, it is advisable for obese people to stay away from consuming peanut butter due to its high caloric value.