Peanut butter is a delicious snack, and there are many ways to enjoy it. However, it is not the best food to eat, and you may notice yourself gaining weight when you eat it frequently. So does peanut butter make you fat?

Peanut butter can make you fat since it is a high-calorie, high-fat food. If you eat more than the suggested daily serving or eat it with other high-calorie and high-fat foods, you will gain weight from it. But, if you eat it in small amounts, peanut butter is actually good for you.

This article explains how fattening peanut butter is, the benefits, and some healthy alternatives that you can eat instead of peanut butter. 

How Fattening is Peanut Butter?

Peanut butter is quite fattening, especially if you eat it frequently or in high portions because it is high in calories and fat. In addition, if you fail to burn the calories you gained due to lack of exercise, it is more likely for you to gain weight from eating too much peanut butter.

First, peanut butter is high in calories. Two tablespoons of peanut butter, the suggested serving size, has nearly 200 calories. One serving of peanut butter has 10% of the daily recommended calorie intake for the average person. So if you are eating a lot of peanut butter, especially more than the serving size per day, it can make you fat. 

Peanut butter on a spoon surrounded by peanuts on a table

Furthermore, peanut butter is a food that is high in fat. As mentioned above, the same two tablespoons of peanut butter have 16 grams of fat per serving. This amount of fat equals more than 20% of a person’s recommended daily fat. 

So if you are eating more than the suggested serving for peanut butter, it is easy to quickly surpass your recommended daily fat intake and gain weight.

Finally, you should consider how you are eating your peanut butter. If you eat it with a lot of chocolate or other sugary foods like jelly, peanut butter is really bad for you, and all that extra fat and sugar will add up to make you gain weight. 

But if you eat your peanut butter with healthy foods like fruits or even just a small portion on its own, it will not make you gain substantial weight. On the contrary, it packs a lot of benefits when consumed in moderation.

Benefits of Peanut Butter

Moderation is key when eating peanut butter to reap its many health benefits. You can even lose or maintain your weight if you eat peanut butter in healthy amounts, thanks to some of its nutrients.

Check out the benefits of eating peanut butter below:

It Is Rich in Protein

First, peanut butter is a high-protein food, and protein is very good for you, especially if you are trying to gain muscle. 

If you can eat your peanut butter in healthy amounts, it can also help you lose weight. Foods with a lot of protein help you stay full longer, so having a small snack of peanut butter will make you feel full for two and a half to three hours. 

It Has Healthy Fats

Furthermore, a study from The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that eating more nuts, including peanut butter, leads to a lower risk of gaining weight and can help control your weight. The monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids in peanut butter are part of the reason that it can help prevent you from gaining weight.

Peanut butter has a lot of other healthy nutrients that help keep you healthy as well. The unsaturated fats and peanut butter can help you lower your cholesterol and keep it low. 

It Contains Many Vitamins

The vitamins in peanut butter, including vitamins B and E, have a lot of benefits. First, they can keep the cells in your body healthy, which reduces your risk of cancer and other chronic diseases. Vitamin E is also good for your skin, and vitamin B can help you have strong and healthy hair.

It Is Low on Carbohydrates

The high amount of calories in peanut butter comes from its high fat content. In contrast, peanut butter is a great snack for people with type 2 diabetes because they are low in carbohydrates. So a serving of peanut butter can help you prevent your blood sugar from spiking.

Healthy Peanut Butter Alternatives

If you are still worried about peanut butter making you gain weight even though there are a lot of benefits to eating it, there are some alternatives that you can eat that are still good for you while still being healthy. There are also some other ways to eat peanut butter if you want to stay healthy.

Here are some good nut-based peanut butter alternatives:

  • Almond butter
  • Cashew butter
  • Hazelnut butter
  • Pecan butter
  • Walnut butter

All these nut kinds of butter still come with all the benefits of eating nuts like vitamins, the high protein which will help you stay full, and healthy unsaturated fats that can keep you from gaining weight.

Whether you are eating peanut butter or an alternative, there are plenty of ways to eat it that are still delicious without adding too much sugar or calories to your diet. 

  • Plain peanut butter. Eating peanut butter plain is great since you are not adding any additional calories, but you need to make sure that you measure out your 2 tbsp of peanut butter, so you are not overeating it.
  • Peanut butter with cereals. You can also have peanut butter for breakfast with some fruit or a low-sugar cereal. Having peanut butter with your breakfast is a great way to stay full all morning without craving extra food before lunch.
  • Peanut butter in smoothies. You can try putting peanut butter into a smoothie with some protein powder and milk for a high-protein snack or meal that will keep you full for a long time. You can also add fruit to your smoothie or anything else you want since it is such an easy-to-make snack.

Final Thoughts

Unfortunately, peanut butter can make you fat if you eat too much of it since it has a lot of calories and fat. But if you can eat it in small amounts and with healthy foods like fruits and other low-calorie, low-fat foods, it is actually good for your body. 

The fats and vitamins in peanut butter are good for you, prevent diseases and weight gain, and keep your skin and hair healthy, as long as you eat it in moderation.

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