Higher fat weight loss diet with peanuts brings extra benefits

Nutrition & Food Science

ISSN: 0034-6659

Article publication date: 1 June 2004



(2004), "Higher fat weight loss diet with peanuts brings extra benefits", Nutrition & Food Science, Vol. 34 No. 3. https://doi.org/10.1108/nfs.2004.01734cab.018



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2004, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Higher fat weight loss diet with peanuts brings extra benefits

Higher fat weight loss diet with peanuts brings extra benefits

A new study concludes that a moderate fat weight loss diet rich in peanuts, peanut butter and peanut oil is better than the typical low-fat diet. The peanut-based diet resulted in a 14 per cent reduction in cardiovascular risk compared to a 9 per cent reduction for the low fat diet.

The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in its February 2004 issue reported that both diets helped overweight and obese men and women lose about 2 lb a week. Those on the low fat diet experienced a drop in their good HDL cholesterol levels, whereas those on the diet rich in peanuts did not.

Afterwards in the important weight maintenance period, the low fat, high carbohydrate diet caused bad LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels to rise. Those on the peanut rich moderate fat diet continued to enjoy much lower levels of these heart disease risk factors.

This study shows that lowering total fat intakes drastically can have adverse consequences on heart disease risk factors even if people lose weight. The authors concluded their results advise against a diet that provides appreciably lower than 30 per cent calories from fat to achieve weight loss.

This newest study effectively demonstrates that peanuts, as a major contributor of monounsaturated fats to moderate fat diets, can aid weight loss while also protecting the heart.

As well as making a valuable contribution to calorie controlled diets, peanuts and peanut butter are sources of important nutrients such as potassium, magnesium, zinc, folate, vitamin E and phytosterols. Peanuts have a very low glycaemic index (GI) of 14, are a good source of vegetable protein and fibre and are naturally low in carbohydrate – all factors that aid effective weight loss.

The Peanut Institute, a US non-profit organisation that supports nutrition research and develops educational programmes to encourage healthful lifestyles, supported this study.

For further information on the nutritional benefits of peanuts and peanut butter, visit the Web site: www.peanutsusa.org.uk/gu4 or contact: Jennette Higgs, UK Consultant Nutritionist/Dietitian and Media Specialist for the American Peanut Council. Tel: 01327 354632; E-mail: jennette@foodtofit.co.uk.

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