Peanuts, also called groundnuts, belong to the family Fabaceae and are mainly cultivated for their edible seeds. Unlike other crop plants, peanuts grow underground rather than above the ground.

It is believed that peanuts originated in Brazil or Peru where the first cultivators of wild peanuts were offered to the Sun God as part of religious ceremonies.

Peanuts are said to be very rich in protein, oil, and fibres. So they are definitely a treat to your body along with your taste buds.

Other functional compounds such as polyphenols, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals are also present in ample amounts in these crunchy nuts. It has also been identified that peanuts are a great source of compounds such as resveratrol, phenolic acids, flavonoids and phytosterols, which help in blocking the absorption of bad cholesterol from our food and assist in keeping the heart healthy.

Apart from oil production, peanuts are also used in the production of peanut butter, confections, roasted peanuts, snack products, soups, and desserts.

Some facts about Peanuts:

  • Scientific Name: Arachis hypogaea
  • Common Name(s): Peanut, groundnut, earthnut
  • Family: Fabaceae ⁄ Leguminosae – Pea family  
  • Common Hindi name: मूँगफली (Munghphali)
  • Native Region and Geographical Distribution: Peanut plant is believed to have originated in Brazil or Peru, although no fossil records exist to prove this. China is the largest producer of peanuts in the world, followed by India. In India, Gujarat is the largest groundnut producing state followed by Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, and Karnataka.
  • Fun fact: Nearly 540 peanuts are required to make a jar of peanut butter. George Washington Carver is known as “The peanut man” because he developed more than three hundred products were derived from peanuts.
  1. Peanuts nutrition facts
  2. Peanuts health benefits
  3. Peanuts side effects
  4. Takeaway

Peanuts are a rich source of protein and fibre. Although peanuts contain 49.24 g of fats per 100 g, these fats are actually heart-healthy fat or unsaturated fats. Peanuts are known to contain an antioxidant called resveratrol. This is the same antioxidant present in red wine and is known to reduce the risk of cancer, cardiovascular diseases and Alzheimer's disease.  

As per the USDA Nutrient Database, 100 g of peanuts contain the following nutrients:

Nutrient Value per 100 g
Water 6.5 g
Energy 567 kcal
Protein 25.8 g
Fat 49.24 g
Carbohydrate 16.13 g
Fiber 8.5 g
Sugars 4.72 g
Calcium 92 mg
Iron 4.58 mg
Magnesium 168 mg
Phosphorus 376 mg
Potassium 705 mg
Sodium 18 mg
Zinc 3.27 mg
Vitamin B1 0.64 mg
Vitamin B2 0.135 g
Vitamin B3 12.066 g
Vitamin B6 0.348 mg
Folate 240 µg
Vitamin E 8.33 mg
Fats/Fatty acids  
Saturated 6.279 g
Monounsaturated 24.426 g
Polyunsaturated 15.558 g
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Did you ever wonder how healthy that extra crunch of peanuts over your salads and ice cream Sunday is? You would be glad to know that taking a handful of peanuts in a day could do wonders for your health. And what better? There are scientific facts to prove that. Let us have a look at the many healing properties that make peanuts such a healthy snack:

  • For weight loss: Peanuts are rich in fibres, which makes them a snack for healthy munching. Thus, the help in keeping you full for long allowing you to munch lesser. Peanuts are also rich in dietary proteins and contain all the essential amino acids. Proteins help in building muscle mass of your body giving you a more lean look.
  • For the skin: Peanuts help to keep your skin smooth and assist in the process of wound healing.
  • For cholesterol: Peanuts help to reduce LDL while increasing HDL, which is a good type of cholesterol. They also help to maintain cholesterol levels immediately after a meal.
  • For the heart: By lowering cholesterol and due to the presence of vitamin E, peanuts help in reducing the risk of atherosclerosis, heart attack and coronary heart disease.
  • For mental health: Consumption of peanuts is associated with reduction in the incidence of depression, anxiety and even Alzheimer’s disease due to its rich composition of antioxidants and vitamins.
  • For gallstones: Regular consumption of peanuts can help in the prevention of gallstones due to interference in the production of bile acids.
  • Against cancer: Consuming peanuts may help modify your risk of cancer, particularly that of the stomach.

Peanuts reduce cholesterol

Since peanuts are mostly made of unsaturated fats, extensive studies have been done on the hypolipidemic (cholesterol lowering) properties of peanuts. In vivo (animal based) studies indicate that peanuts reduce the levels of LDL cholesterol while at the same time helping maintain the HDL cholesterol in the body.

In a clinical study done in Ghana, regular peanut consumption was found to balance the cholesterol levels within 4 weeks.

According to a recent clinical study published in the Journal of Nutrition, consumption of 85 g of peanuts along with a high-fat diet helps in improving postprandial hyperlipidemia, which is the spike in blood fatty acids right after a meal. 

(Read more: High cholesterol treatment)

Peanuts for weight loss

It is a common misconception that eating nuts when you are on diet will increase your weight. The reason for this is the high-fat content of nuts.

Several studies have shown that this is not true. Infact. quite contrary to this, in some cases, including nuts such as peanuts in your diet has been suggested to help you reduce weight in a healthy way. This is because the fat present in nuts is mostly unsaturated fatty acids, which actually helps prevent high cholesterol and maintain a healthy balance of fats in the body. A trait essential to keep obesity at bay. 

Additionally, peanuts are a rich source of dietary fibre, a macronutrient that makes you feel full for longer and prevents unnecessary munching.

According to a study published in the Journal of The American College of Nutrition, including peanuts and peanut products in your diet does not lead to an increase in your BMI (Body Mass Index), which is a measure of your body fat based on your height and weight. A balanced BMI means a healthier body weight.

(Read more: Weight loss diet chart)

Are you also troubled by obesity and are not able to lose weight even after a lot of efforts, then start using myUpchar Ayurveda Medarodh Weight Control Tablet today and control your weight.



Peanuts benefits for heart

Peanut is loaded with nutrients and active compounds that are healthy for your heart. The unsaturated fat content alone is enough to make it a healthy food for heart patients. Let us have a look at the many ways your heart can benefit from regular peanut consumption.

Regular peanut consumption is suggested to be helpful in keeping your cholesterol levels in check. Clinical studies indicate that it improves lipid profiles and aids in reducing the risk of plaque development in blood vessels, which otherwise could block heart arteries and pose a threat of heart attack and heart diseases.

Furthermore, peanuts have a good amount of vitamin E,  which has been found to reduce the risk of coronary heart disease.

The amino acid arginine present in peanuts improves blood circulation, which again is a sign of a healthy cardiovascular system.

Peanuts are rich in flavonoids, unsaturated fats and various other compounds. Together, these aid in reducing high blood pressure, which is one of the major risk factors for heart diseases. 

Also, peanuts contain an antioxidant called resveratrol, which reduces oxidative stress, thus helping maintain heart function and preventing cardiovascular diseases.

Peanuts as a protein source

If you are a health enthusiast you might already know peanuts to be one of the best sources of proteins. But do you know why?

Peanuts contain all of the 20 essential amino acids and they are the best source of arginine, an amino acid that is used in the biosynthesis of many important proteins in the body. Out of all the nuts, peanuts are known to be the richest in protein. In fact, the protein content in peanuts is equivalent to the protein content in meat or eggs.

These proteins have great emulsifying activity (breaking down fats into small droplets), emulsifying stability (maintaining the fat as droplets for easier use by the body) and great water retention properties. The ease of digestibility of peanut protein is as good as any other animal protein.

So, if you are a vegetarian or a vegan, peanuts could be the perfect choice of proteins for you.

(Read more: Protein powder benefits for health)

Peanuts for gallstones

Gallstones are tiny stones that form inside your gallbladder due to hardening of digestive fluids and cholesterol. They could be a cause of major discomfort and pain, the only respite being surgery. However, nuts, especially peanuts may save you from the worst of this condition. Studies indicate that the unsaturated fats present in peanuts eliminate the risk of gallstones by decreasing the level of bad cholesterol (LDL) in the body.

(Read more: Gallstone analysis)

Also, peanuts host a variety of antioxidants, which by reducing oxidative stress prevent gallstone formation. This has been evidenced by the effect of Vitamin E on gallstone formation.

According to a clinical study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, regular peanut consumption reduces the risk of cholecystectomy.

Peanuts contain a good amount of fibre and research evidence suggests that fibre reduces the risk of gallstone and cholecystectomy by reducing the production of secondary bile acids, biological compounds that are responsible for gallstone formation. 

(Read more: Homeopathic treatment for gallstones)

Peanuts for Alzheimer's

Alzheimer's is a neurodegenerative disease that slowly deteriorates brain function and motor skills. According to NIH, it is the major cause of age-related dementia and loss of cognition. There is no definitive cure for Alzheimer's disease and treatment usually includes cognitive therapies and behavioural management to help people live a normal life.

Now, consuming peanuts is suggested to be helpful in reducing the risk of Alzheimer's disease as they are rich in antioxidants like vitamin B3 and vitamin E. 

Studies on resveratrol demonstrate that it prevents brain cell damage by interfering with certain cell signalling pathways. Peanuts, as a good source of resveratrol, could thus hold some therapeutic potential against Alzheimer's.

(Read more: Alzheimer's disease diet)

Peanuts benefits for skin

Peanuts are loaded with vitamin E and vitamin B, two nutrients that promote skin health. Studies indicate that B vitamin promotes fibroblast development and the process of wound healing. Fibroblasts are a type of body cells that help in maintaining skin structure. As antioxidants, these vitamins ensure that you do not suffer from premature ageing signs like wrinkles and dark spots.

Also, the fat content present in peanuts would help helps maintain the skin barrier, avoiding the loss of moisture from your skin surface. This means that you do not suffer from dry skin.

Using peanut oil also protects you from the harmful effects of UV radiation. Just mix a bit of this oil with your massage oil and you are good to go.

(Read more: How to get glowing skin naturally)

Peanuts for depression

Depression is a result of various environmental and neurological changes that happen to brain chemicals. Peanuts contain at least 2 important compounds that have been linked to mood alleviation and prevention of depression.

First, it makes a good source of B vitamin, which when present in low amounts are associated with depression and mood suppression. In a review article and a case study, consumption of vitamin B3 was found to be useful in alleviating depression symptoms and improving mood.

Additionally, the amino acid tryptophan present in peanut is essential for the synthesis of serotonin. Serotonin is the pleasure hormone that uplifts mood and reduces depression. Though the direct effect of tryptophan is still unclear, a deficiency has been found to cause a relapse of symptoms in previously treated individuals.

(Read more: Depression in children)

Peanuts anti cancer properties

Peanuts play a major role in preventing cancer. They contain polyphenols, an antioxidant, which prevents the formation of toxic nitrogen compounds in the stomach. This, in turn, reduces the risk of stomach cancer. Also, research proves that various types of cancers can be prevented by consuming peanuts such as:

(Read more: Diet for cancer patients)

Though peanuts have myriad health benefits, here are some side effects of peanuts that you should be aware of:

  • Peanut allergy is one of the most common types of food allergy. It is a serious condition that is usually accompanied by abdominal pain, cramps, nausea, and shortness of breath.
  • Peanuts are prone to aflatoxin contamination, which is created by a fungus, Aspergillus flavus. Aflatoxins are dangerous for health as they cause malignant new growths in your skin. Once the peanut becomes yellowish, it should not be consumed.
  • Peanuts are known to be helpful in weight loss, though, they provide a lot of calories and thus may cause weight gain when consumed in excess.
  • Though peanuts have a good amount of potassium, it is rich in sodium too. Taking too much of this mineral can have adverse effects on your heart and health.
  • it is better to avoid fried and salted peanuts since it has trans fats and a much higher level of sodium, which would do more harm than good.
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Peanuts contain all the nutrients that your body needs. It is a good source of proteins, unsaturated fat, various minerals such as calcium, phosphorus and potassium and a rich source of different vitamins, all of which are beneficial for the health. Peanuts are usually referred to as poor man’s protein. Moderate consumption of peanuts by people who are non-allergic can do wonders for the body and mind.


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