Friday, September 25, 2009

Peanut Butter is Good For You!

This recent article in USA Weekend inpired this blog.
Good news about peanut butter: You might want to think twice before putting down that spoonful of peanut butter. It turns out the lunchtime staple is good for you. Government guidelines recommend limiting daily fat consumption to between 20% and 35% of calories, and saturated fats should be less than 10%, according to the departments of Agriculture and Health and Human Services. So moderation is key when eating foods high in calories such as peanut butter, says Harvard nutritionist Walter C. Willett. One serving (about 2 tablespoons) of regular creamy peanut butter has 3.3 grams of saturated fat (chunky style has 2.6 grams), but it also contains nutrients such as potassium and niacin. And one serving contains 12.3 grams of unsaturated fat, which can lower cholesterol and decrease the risk of heart disease. But if you are watching your blood pressure, look for unsalted versions with only 5 mg of sodium per serving.

Here are some interesting facts about peanuts and peanut butter:
Did you know that Americans eat an average of about 6 pounds of peanuts per person, per year, according to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Almost half of the U.S. peanut crop is used to make peanut butter. It takes nearly 850 peanuts to make a jar of peanut butter. Peanut butter must be at least 90 percent peanuts with no artificial sweeteners, colors or preservatives to officially be labeled peanut butter.

Who invented peanut butter? Some speculate that peanut butter was first introduced in the United States in 1890, when a St. Louis physician invented peanut butter to provide his patients with an easy-to-digest, high protein food. Others still believe it to be the ‘father of the peanut industry’, George Washington Carver who invented more than 300 uses for peanuts.

Dates of importance:
National Peanut Butter Day is January 22nd.
National Peanut Month is March.
National Peanut Butter and Jelly Day is April 2nd.
Sept 13 was National Peanut Day!

The Virginia Marketplace has chosen The Peanut Shop of Williamsburg Peanut Butter to sell. Here is what they say about it: “A favorite for years, our all natural Virginia Peanut Butter has become famous. Our peanut butter is just that - peanuts, and maybe a pinch of salt. No added sugars.” It is available in smooth, salt free smooth, crunchy, or a sampler of all three. We also sell peanut straws, peanut butter pie, peanut butter brownie pie, peanut butter cheesecake truffles and peanut butter petit fours.

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