Raise your hand if you love peanut butter.
Yes, it’s delicious, creamy, great on everything, or straight from the jar. But it’s a well-known fact that most generic peanut butters are full of trans fat (partially hydrogenated oils), added sugars, and added salt. This hardly makes it a nutritional choice. Natural peanut butters don’t have these unhealthy ingredients but are often very bland and unsatisfying.
So what’s a health-conscious peanut butter-addict to do? Switch to Almond Butter.
Almond butter is rich, delicious, and provides all the satisfaction of peanut butter. It can mostly be found in health food stores, but some bigger chain grocery stores carry it as well. The ingredients are almost always just almonds (either roasted or raw, depending on your preference) without any sugar, salt, or oils. Besides the lack of “extra” ingedients, the almond is far more nutritious than the peanut, making almond butter a healthier choice than peanut butter. Almonds have health-promoting “good” fats that lower bad cholesterol and your risk for heart disease. They’re a great source of vitamin E (powerful antioxidant), magnesium, and potassium.
Warning: Almond butter is a bit pricier than peanut butter, but you’re paying for a higher quality product with better nutrition (and better taste, in my opinion!) I usually opt for “natural” almond butters instead of organic just because the organic is so expensive. My favorite kind is MaraNatha crunchy and roasted, but you can try creamy or raw varieties, too.
To dieters: Almond butter is a very healthy choice and provides lots of “good,” mono- and polyunsaturated fats. However, like peanut butter, it’s still pretty high in calories (about 180 calories in 2 tablespoons). So, beware of portion size. It’s not junk food, but it’s just something to be conscious of. It’s so delicious, I can often be found (shamefully) with a spoon in the jar, losing all control! I’m practically an addict.
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