Can Peanuts Make You Fat & Cause Weight Gain?

Do Peanuts complete your winter’s essentials list?

Are peanuts the perfect mid-morning snack for you?

But do you hold back because you’re worried that peanuts will make you fat?

Or perhaps you are hoping to bulk up and are considering adding peanut butter to your breakfast must-haves?

Peanuts, also known as groundnuts or monkey nuts, are high in calories, which can create a concern for weight gain.

But can peanuts make you fat, or is it a myth?

Keep reading to find out!

Peanuts: A pea or a nut?

One of the most surprising things about peanuts is that, as the name might imply, peanuts are not tree nuts.

They are, in fact, a legume that belongs to the pea family.

Peanuts are found in the tropical and subtropical regions of the world, grown for their edible seeds.

Peanuts are also used to produce peanut oil (Arachis oil).

Frequently consumed all around the world, peanuts are a nutrient-dense snack.

Peanuts are a significant source of plant-based protein, essential fats, fiber, and many vitamins and minerals, including folate, vitamins B complex, and potassium.

They are consumed in a variety of ways.

They can be eaten raw or roasted and salted.

They are also incorporated into many desserts, confectioneries, chocolates, crackers, granola mix, sauces, and even in rice or pasta dishes.

They are processed to make gluten-free flour and peanut butter.

Nutritional Contents Of Peanuts

The following are the nutrient contents of about 3.5 ounces (100 grams) of raw peanuts:

  • Calories: 567
  • Protein: 25.8 grams
  • Carbs: 16.1 grams
  • Sugar: 4.7 grams
  • Fiber: 8.5 grams
  • Fat: 49.2 grams
    • Saturated: 6.28 grams
    • Monounsaturated: 24.43 grams
    • Polyunsaturated: 15.56 grams
    • Omega-6: 15.56 grams
    • Trans: 0 grams

Protein Power

Proteins are important for the proper growth and development of the human body.

As a legume, peanuts are a valuable source of protein, particularly for vegans and vegetarians.

100g of protein can provide you with almost 25g of protein, which is nearly half of an adult’s daily protein requirement.

However, the proteins arachin and conarachin can cause severe allergic reactions in people. So it is always safer to get tested.

The Super Snack

Peanuts provide an exorbitant amount of fiber.

A 100g of peanuts provides 8.5g of fiber, this makes them an ideal snack for managing weight loss and preventing heart diseases.

Low carbohydrate and high fiber content are the reasons peanuts have a low glycemic index.

In simple terms, it means that peanuts raise blood sugar slowly and are beneficial in managing type 2 diabetes.

The soluble fiber in peanuts is also known to lower blood cholesterol levels.

Protein and fiber-rich peanuts improve satiety and make you feel full for longer, especially when eaten raw with their skins.

A study observed that participants snacking on peanuts experienced reduced cravings and higher satiety following meal times.

Are there fats In Peanuts?

Peanuts are also classified as oil seeds, as they have a high-fat content and are used to produce oil.

Nearly 44-56% of the calories in peanuts are contributed by fats.

But, the good news is most of the fats in peanuts are monosaturated and polyunsaturated fats!

These fats are considered being healthy fats.

According to the AHA, replacing saturated and trans fats with monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats can improve cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases.

Are peanuts good for losing weight?

Although peanuts are high in calories, recent studies suggest that replacing peanuts with common dietary fats is positively associated with managing weight.

The strong nutrient profile of peanuts, which includes significant amounts of fiber, healthy fats, protein, and a wide range of vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals, makes them an excellent food choice for weight loss.

A study investigating regular consumption of peanuts for normal dietary fats suggests that despite being high in calories, peanuts do not lead to weight gain.

Another research shows that replacing junk food with peanuts as snacks can help children maintain ideal body weight.

It has been observed that permitting the use of peanuts in weight loss diets notably improved results.

Can peanuts cause weight gain?

Yes, peanuts can lead to an increase in body weight. Their high-fat content and calorie-dense nature can aid in weight gain.

Weight gain is observed, particularly when peanuts are eaten in large quantities.

Mindlessly snacking on peanuts often leads to overeating.

Even while eating peanut butter, you might find it hard to restrict yourself to two tablespoons, which is the recommended serving.

The recommended serving itself has nearly 200 calories because sugar is frequently an ingredient in commercially prepared peanut butter.

It is easy for the calories to add up, and the excess calories can cause weight gain.

Do peanuts make your belly fat?

No, peanuts do not make your belly fat. In fact, they can help in losing weight!

Poor lifestyle choices, such as lack of sleep and exercise, are more commonly attributed to abdominal adiposity.

What happens if you eat a lot of peanuts?

Eating a lot of peanuts can gradually cause weight gain.

Another disadvantage is the high sodium content of peanuts. Especially in the commercially prepared salted and roasted variety or trail mix.

Excessive sodium consumption can lead to elevated blood pressure, along with a negative impact on the kidneys.

The high-fat content of peanuts, and the long time it takes for them to be digested, can markedly raise instances of bloating and gas.

So it’s best to eat peanuts in a moderate quantity.

What happens if I eat peanuts every day?

Well, if you only eat the recommended handful of peanuts every day, you will get tons of benefits!

Peanuts have more protein than any other nut, which is 7g per serving, which is nearly 30g.

Peanuts also have over 30 vitamins and minerals that have positive affects on practically every part of your body, from your teeth, skin, and heart, to even digestion.

Some bonus micronutrients in peanuts include:

  • Manganese: important for processing cholesterol
  • Phosphate: aids in muscle, bone, and teeth health
  • Folate: essential in pregnancy and childhood
  • Vitamin E: great for skin health
  • Phytosterol: boosts heart health and lowers cholesterol

In conclusion, peanuts are an excellent addition to your diet.

Whether raw as a snack or incorporated into your favorite meals, peanuts are a fantastic source of calories and nutrients that will help you manage your weight without compromising your health.

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