However you like to spread it and whatever you like it on—nut… butters can be an excellent source of protein and healthy fat. But, do not let just any nut inside you! There are a few things to be aware of before you indulge in these delicious treats. Nut butter jars are the perfect hiding place for companies to load hydrogenated oils, sugars and other undesirable fillers while still wearing the guise of a “healthy” product. It is cheap and easy to grab Skippy peanut butter or Nutella when doing a grocery run, but I’d like to turn you on to some better alternatives.
Peanut butter is often regarded as a guilty pleasure and gets a bad rap for being a fatty, but being label-conscious while shopping will reveal several brands that have honest ingredients, safe for oral consumption. For purpose of comparison, the Wild Friends Classic Creamy Peanut Butter has two ingredients which are roasted peanuts and sea salt — as opposed to Skippy Peanut Butter, which contains roasted peanuts, sugar, hydrogenated vegetable oil (cottonseed, soybean and rapeseed oil) and salt. Both products are 190 calories per serving (2 tbsp) and have the same fat content (16g). The thing to remember when comparing labels is that it takes fat to burn fat, so healthy fat from peanuts is a good thing, but the ingredient to avoid is sugar. Excess sugar is converted into stored body fat and is not used for energy in a process is called lipogenesis. With bikini season around the corner, trust me and skip the Skippy!
The peanut’s more endowed brother, the almond, is rich with monounsaturated fats which promote cardiovascular health. Almonds have higher levels of vitamin E and B vitamins than peanuts, and are also rich in manganese, magnesium, phosphorus, copper, iron and calcium.These nutrients prevent disease and put off the effects of aging by protecting cells from damage. Almond butter is an easy way to consume these vital nutrients, and is a tasty topping on almost anything from apples and bananas to oatmeal and toast. The rule of thumb is to pick a jar whose only ingredient is almonds — and maybe salt — but read the packaging to be conscious of serving sizes!
If monogamy isn’t your thing, NuttZo Butter makes an orgy in a jar combining seven nuts and seeds which is an experience that is worthy of the saying “a bang for your buck.” A 12 oz jar is about $16 but consists of all organic roasted ingredients including cashews, almonds, brazil nuts, flax seeds, hazelnuts, chia seeds, pumpkin seeds and Celtic Sea Salt. This brand also has a Power Fuel Chocolate flavor that is a Paleo approved spread which will do your waistline justice when your sweet tooth beckons. The chocolate NuttZo Butter has no added sugar and only 2g of natural sugar per serving (2 tbsp) whereas Nutella has 21g of sugar per serving. A simple change in brand for the same type of product can put you leaps and bounds ahead in your health journey.
Like in any situation be picky with what you allow inside you and when you get nutty make sure you pick a good wrapper!
Photo taken from Google.