Did you know that the average American eats three pounds of peanut butter every year? That’s enough peanut butter to coat the floor of the Grand Canyon! Peanut butter is not only a quick and easy snack or meal option on the go, but it’s also full of nutrients that helps keep your hunger at bay. Studies have shown that incorporating peanut butter into your diet helps with weight loss through reducing your total caloric intake.
Why does peanut butter get such a bad wrap then? Well, much like anything else in American eating patterns, it comes down to portion control. Your average peanut butter is calorically dense for the serving size that is recommend. People often “over-estimate” the size of 2 TBSP (which is the equivalent of the tip of your thumb x 2) and find themselves lathering the bread with mounds of the oeey-gooey deliciousness.
Another factor that comes into play is the wide variety of peanut butters available in the market. Have you taken a look at this isle lately?! It’s incredible to see how many brands are out there; infusing white chocolate, caramel, macadamia nuts – you name it into the natural peanut butter that once was. In doing so, the ingredient list gets longer and longer, adding more sugar and unnecessary enhancers that increases the calories further.
So, how do you decide if peanut butter is your friend or foe?
- Consider the facts.
- Peanut butter in it’s natural state is a great source of nutrition.
- Choose your peanut butter wisely.
- Read the ingredient list. Is there a laundry list of additives? If so, probably not the best choice.
- Look for trans-fats (aka partially hydrogenated or fractionated oils in any form).
- Brands with less than 2 ingredients are a safe bet (I.E. natural ground peanuts, sea salt).
PB2 has 85% less calories than a natural peanut butter and 5 grams of protein. It is a great addition to toast, pancakes, fresh fruit as well as an awesome enhancer stirred into brownies, cookies and cakes to give off that savory peanut taste without the added calories. It is the perfect Simple-Swap for someone who enjoys peanut butter but is watching their overall calorie intake. You can find this at certain health food stores like Whole Foods but will pay a pretty penny. I suggest you try it out for yourself first (trust me, it’s worth the $); then make the investment and order in bulk off Amazon.