Nothing says comfort food like a good peanut butter and jelly sandwich. But is this favorite lunch box healthy for you? You bet it is! This is…if you make it the right way.
Well-made PB&J not only tastes good, but it also contains some healthy, plant-powered proteins. Monounsaturated fatAnd the Whole grain fiber.
Follow these healthy peanut butter and jelly tips to help you get the nutrients you need and help maintain a healthy diet.
Are peanut butter and jelly sandwiches healthy?
“From a nutritional point of view, the PB&J sandwich is very good,” says Ryan D. Andrews, MS, MA, RD, RYT, CSCS.A guide to vegetarian eating. ” you have proteinand fat and the basicAll of which can support a healthy diet, he says.
Peanut butter is a Good source of low carb protein, fill 7 g in 2 tbsp. They are full of vitamin E and minerals, such as magnesium, calcium, and potassium.
Peanut butter is also free of cholesterol and contains about 8 grams of the “good”. Monounsaturated fat in 2 tbsp. Which “can have a beneficial effect on your heart when eaten in moderation,” according to American Heart Association. In general, unless you’re allergic to peanuts, peanut butter is a safe, nutrient-dense, eco-friendly crop, says Andrews.
And when you choose the right bread — like whole grain, instead of white bread — you’ll also get a solid dose of the basic It can help keep digestion regular, make you feel full, and help you maintain a healthy weight.
Hacks for healthy peanut butter and jelly sandwiches
Not all PB&J are created equal. The quality of your choices of ingredients will determine how healthy your sandwich is. The hacks below offer easy alternatives to traditional highly processed peanut butter with sugar-sweetened fruit on white bread with your nutritional needs and personal taste preferences in mind.
1. Choose the right bread
PB&J may have entered your life on fluffy white bread, but these slices contain a long list of ingredients that don’t offer much nutritionally. Alternatively, hack PB & J using high fiber Whole grain bread. Andrews suggests either whole-grain or whole-grain bread slow rising sourdough – Both contain a high percentage of nutrients such as Amino acids And B vitamins, and a decrease in anti-nutritional foods such as Fitts of its refined grain counterparts.
In addition, spread and slow-cooked sourdough bread tends to be well-digested, Andrews says. if you own FODMAP Allergies, sourdough can be a particularly good choice because sourdough May increase mineral absorption, reduce glycemic response, and aid fiber bioavailability. If either is too hard to find, says Andrews, “a simple whole-grain bread will do.”
He went gluten free? There are still good whole-grain options for those who can’t enjoy traditional bread, but Andrews says it’s only worth it if you’re allergic.
2. Choose healthy peanut butter
In addition to peanuts, Andrews says, three ingredients are usually added to peanut butter: oil, sugar, and salt. “Old school formulas [like your traditional supermarket finds] Often includes hydrogenation or Partially hydrogenated oilFor the healthiest PB, he says, you should avoid peanut butter with those types of added oils, or opt for one without added oil.
Andrews notes that some of the salt in peanut butter is not a major concern unless there is a specific health cause. But other than that, choose a brand that doesn’t add anything extra to the peanut butter mixture. Meaning… the healthiest choice for PB should be peanuts only.
When it comes to choosing organic vs. traditional peanut butter, Andrews says there isn’t much difference in terms of nutrients like iron or protein. “But there is an issue that organic peanut butter should be made because farming has fewer chemicals and is generally more sustainable,” he notes.
Do you prefer substitute nut or seed butter? Enjoy it in your spare time, says Andrews. Roll up your favorite bread with almond butter or sunflower seeds for a new twist on an old favorite. “From a diet standpoint, it’s always a good idea to increase the variety in your diet,” Andrews says, so let your taste buds guide you along the way.
Just keep in mind that the healthiest choice should focus on the main ingredient, whether that’s peanuts, cashews, or sunflower seeds, and not sugar, oils, or preservatives. And always make sure to check for zero trans fats – Because they are our enemy and until a few years ago, they were unfortunately found in many nut butters.
3. Choose a 100% fruit spread.
When it comes to decorating a peanut butter and jam sandwich, “the simpler the better,” says Andrews. The 100% fruit fat can help keep the amount of added sugar low and give you a delicious dessert on your PB&J.
Jams (made with crushed fruit) and jellies (made with fruit juice) already naturally contain fructose, so Andrews recommends avoiding brands that add other sweeteners, especially high-fructose corn syrup. Andrews acknowledges that a little bit of sugar adds sweetness and helps preserve the fruit, but “try to stay under 4 to 5 grams per serving.”
Even if you’re considering buying a light fruit spread with sugar substitutes, Andrews notes that many artificial sweeteners love them. sucralose It can cause bloating. “If you can avoid it, do it.” Focus on choosing the most natural fruit spread, with the least amount of ingredients. Use it in moderation because sugar and calories build up quickly.
But for your best bet? Just mash up some fresh berries! It can be as easy to mash the strawberries and spread them on a sandwich as it is to spread them on something from a jar.
“Listen to your body,” Andrews says. Your body size, hunger levels and physical cues will contribute to including PB & Js in your healthy diet. Check with yourself after eating. Are you full do you feel you ate enough? Was PB&J a snack? a meal? What role does it play in your nutrition that day? With a combination of good nutrition, common sense, and your individual needs, you can find a way to enjoy your peanut butter and jam sandwiches better and healthier.
Can you lose weight when taking PB & Js?
Good news, sandwich lovers – PB&J can definitely be part of a balanced diet, and it can help with weight loss! Especially if you follow the health hacks mentioned above.
The nutritional value of PB&J allows this sandwich to be part of a balanced diet, and may aid in weight loss. Search from Purdue University found that people manage their weight loss regimes better when nuts are included. Andrews also agrees that peanut butter and jelly can help with weight loss. But it’s also important to think about what will replace PB&J in your diet. What will you eat instead?
Whether you choose PB & J over a salad or more Fast food issues. There are many food options — healthy and unhealthy — so Andrews suggests looking at how sandwich habits affect your diet as a whole.
Consider portions, too: “A peanut butter and jam sandwich can contain a fair amount of calories, so you’ll need to use common sense to decide if your sandwich is enough (or too much) for your specific nutritional needs,” notes Andrews.
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