MANILA, APRIL 1, 2011 (MANILA TIMES) Peanut butter and apples combine in this toasty treat.

INCREASINGLY, many healthcare professionals are promoting the benefits of a plant-based diet.

For instance, the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans point out that a shift in food intake patterns to a more plant-based diet—one that emphasizes fruits, vegetables, whole grains and nuts—can help Americans live better.

Peanuts and a Healthy Diet

Here’s how peanuts can play a role in such a diet:

• Plant-based proteins, such as peanuts, do not contain cholesterol and have relatively low levels of saturated fat. In fact, the FDA has approved peanuts as part of a heart-healthy eating plan, saying “scientific evidence suggests, but does not prove, that eating 1.5 ounces per day of most nuts, including peanuts, as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol, may reduce the risk of heart disease.”

• Peanuts and peanut butter are nutrient rich. At 7 grams per serving, peanuts have more protein than any other nut.

• According to the latest USDA food guidelines, we should all consider adding plant-based proteins to our diets—even replacing a percentage of animal-based proteins with them.

• Plus, plant-based proteins are higher in fiber than animal-based proteins. Fiber aids digestion, and eating a diet high in fiber may result in consuming fewer calories over the course of the day because it helps promote a feeling of fullness.

• Antioxidants help reduce the damaging effects of oxygen in tissues. Nuts are superfoods with antioxidant capacity that meets or beats other fruits and vegetables. Bringing Plant-Based Protein to the Table

Experts say two-thirds of your plate should consist of vegetables, whole grains, beans, nuts and fruit, and one-third—or less—of your plate should be animal protein.

By including familiar foods in your diet, such as peanuts and peanut butter, you may be more willing to try new recipes. Here’s an example: Peanut Apple Toastie

Ingredients: 2 slices bread, toasted and buttered 2 tablespoons peanut butter ˝ apple, sliced Lemon juice Cinnamon

1 teaspoon brown sugar


Spread peanut butter on one side of each of the 2 slices of toasted bread. Dip apple slices in lemon juice. Arrange apple slices on peanut butter and sprinkle with brown sugar and cinnamon. Put on a baking sheet and place under broiler. Broil 3-5 minutes or until lightly browned.

To learn more about nutrition and recipes, visit North American Precis Syndicate, Inc.

Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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