Home » Diet and Nutrition News & Advice » Creamy, Chunky, Topped with Jelly: 6 Facts for National Peanut Butter Day

Creamy, Chunky, Topped with Jelly: 6 Facts for National Peanut Butter Day

T00-dah is nauh-tion-all-pee-nut-buh-ter-daaaaaaaeeee…sorry, I had something stuck to the roof of my mouth. Today is National Peanut Butter Day!

January 24th is a day where we can indulge in the sticky, lip-smacking, crunchy vs. smooth debate while we eat peanut butter rice krispy treats all day long, but hey, those are just my plans. How will you celebrate, peanut butter lovers? No matter if you prefer yours creamy, chunky-monkey, raw au-natural, or with chocolate or stuck to jelly, there’s little doubt that North Americans have loved peanut butter for generations…

1. A Source of Sticky Canadian Pride

Even though peanut butter can be dated back to Aztec times, and although many folks (even George Washington Carver) have been credited as the inventor of peanut butter….suck it Americans, the process for making peanut butter was actually invented in Canada in 1884.

According to his official patent application, Canadian chemist, Marcellus Gilmore Edson, is considered the first person to patent a finished peanut paste, which he milled roasted peanuts between two heated surfaces and cooled to the “consistency…of butter, lard, or ointment”.

2. No Nuts About It!

While the very name “peanut butter” contains the word “nut”, peanuts are not nuts at all. In fact, peanuts are legumes that don’t grow on trees like other nuts (i.e., almonds, pecans, chestnuts, walnuts). Peanuts grow underground and belong to the pea, bean, lentil, and edible seed family, called leguminosae, which all grow in pods..

The actual peanut takes about 5-months to fully grow—from planting to harvesting. And it’s the peanut seed we actually pluck from it’s pod to eat. That might seem like a lot of fancy finger work when you consider the fact that it takes roughly 540 individual peanuts to make one 12-ounce jar of peanut butter.

3. Peanut Butter Benefits

It’s no surprise that peanuts themselves are an rich source of protein. However, once ground down smooth or chunky into peanut butter, particularly if you nosh or the natural nut butter, this popular spread contains plenty of vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and antioxidants to boot.

As far as minerals go, peanut butter is a rich source of calcium, iron, zinc, selenium, manganese, copper, and potassium. The bounty of B-vitamins within each smear also contains essential B-complex vitamins (vitamin b-6, folates, riboflavin, thiamin, pantothenic acid, and niacin, which promotes immune strength, blood flow to the brain, and so much more.

4. But That’s Nut All…

Peanuts and peanut butter is  also high in fibre and mono-unsaturated fatty acids (MUFA), like oleic acid, which has been repeatedly linked to decreasing LDL (bad) cholesterol while increasing HDL (good) cholesterol to prevent things like high cholesterol, heart disease, and stroke.

Research from Oregon State University notes that additional antioxidants found in peanuts and peanut butters are rich in poly-phenolic antioxidants (i.e., resveratrol) and primarily p-coumaric acid, linked to lowering the risk of several diseases—such as Alzheimer’s disease, fungal infections, degenerative nerve diseases, and several types of cancer, in particular, stomach cancer.

5. Sticky Labelling

Since its invention in 1884, people have spread and drizzled peanut butter on everything from toast to chocolate sundaes and from waffles to smoothies. However, it turns out that with so many brands of nut butter to pick from, how can you be sure your purchasing the real deal, and not pure junk with nothing but sugar, oils, salt, and added flavor?

Luckily, the Peanut Institute can point us away from the nutty impostures and towards dietary nut super-spreads with this official explanation, “to be called peanut butter, both traditionally commercial and “natural” types must contain a minimum of 90 percent peanuts, with no artificial sweeteners, colors, or preservatives.

6. A Note on Peanut Allergies

According to a U.K. study entitled “Effect of Avoidance on Peanut Allergy after Early Peanut Consumption“, published in The New England Journal of Medicine, introducing your child to peanuts early on in life significantly reduces the risk of peanut allergies.

These study findings even showed that participants who discontinued eating peanuts (for 12-months) after the study showed had lower rates of peanut allergy compared to child participants who avoided peanuts altogether.



We Recommend

More on ActiveBeat
  • Dig Into These Incredible Health Benefits of Squash
    Squash is probably not the first thing that comes to mind when you're considering something that's tasty and nutritious, but it does take a center role during holiday meals.
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • Popular Foods You Should Buy Direct From Farmers' Markets
    People are always touting the benefits of buying fresh food – and it's really hard to beat food that is sold directly from a farm, without a middleman. As CookingLight.
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • The Health Benefits of Eating Celery
    Celery – it's sometimes the co-star on a plate of chicken wings while watching the big game, but in fact celery should have a pedestal all its own.
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • Amazing Health Benefits of Eating Pineapple
    Pineapple: a fruit so flavorful, for centuries it's been the centerpiece of a variety of popular foods.
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • Bite Into These 13 Strange but Nutritious Foods
    You might've heard of some of these foods, or have seen them at your local grocery store, but have paid no mind to them.
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • 12 Reasons to Drink Water and Stay Hydrated Every Day
    You've probably been told by someone -- maybe a television show, website, or even a medical professional -- that you should be drinking a lot of water each day.
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • 6 Arguments for the Health of Potato Skins
    Let me start with a clarification, by potato skins I'm referring to the skin covering potatoes and NOT the cheese and bacon topped pub grub.
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • Get Salty About These 8 Sodium-Filled Foods
    We all need salt to function properly, but the problem is most foods have added sodium—lots of it—that can increase the risk of heart problems.
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • 7 Magnesium-Heavy Foods You Should Be Eating Right Now
    Chances are you've heard of magnesium; maybe you've even heard that it's good to eat foods that contain this important mineral.
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • Healthy Foods That Pack a Vitamin B12 Boost
    Vitamin B12 (also referred to as cobalamin) is sometimes overlooked in diets, but it plays a crucial role in everyday functioning – for one thing, it's responsible for the...
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • Gastritis Diet: Foods to Eat and Foods to Avoid
    A condition that involves the inflammation, irritation or erosion of the stomach lining, gastritis can occur suddenly or gradually as a result of many different factors.
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • 6 of the Best Foods to Eat Before a Workout
    It may be tempting to skip out on eating before a workout, but the body requires adequate fuel in its tank in order to achieve maximum performance.
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • 8 Foods That Help Ease Anxiety
    In the United States alone, anxiety disorders affect more than 40 million adults aged 18 or older—over 18 percent of the country’s population.
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • 7 Reasons for Always Feeling Hungry
    Physical weakness, a grumbling stomach, headache and trouble concentrating— we’re all familiar with how it feels when hunger hits.
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • The Best Food Sources of Omega-3 Fatty Acids
    Omega-3s are polyunsatured fats that offer a wealth of health benefits. Not only are they crucial for maintaining good overall health, omega-3s are also beneficial for preventing...
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice