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8 Benefits Of Peanut Butter That Will Make You Crave It More

8 Benefits Of Peanut Butter That Will Make You Crave It More

Peanut butter is my favorite snack food. I love it so much that I buy it in a 4-pound jar (yes, really!) and gobble it up every month. I love the taste and the fact that you can pair it with anything – bananas, crackers, jelly, on a sandwich, on pancakes – try it! But now I’m so excited to learn there are tons of health benefits of peanut butter that make it even better for me to eat! For example, peanut butter:

1. Is a great source of protein.

If you eat two tablespoons of peanut butter, you’re getting seven grams of protein! Because it’s so full of protein, peanut butter is a very filling snack – this means you can eat less, but feel fuller, and for longer! Protein is also good for building and repairing muscles, which is really good, but especially beneficial if you work out a lot and strain your muscles. Eat some peanut butter on toast for breakfast, and you’ll feel satisfied until lunch time!

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    2. Is good for your heart.

    Studies show people who regularly include peanut butter in their diets are less likely to develop heart disease of type 2 diabetes than people who rarely eat nuts or nut products. You can still be healthy without eating nuts, but these studies show there is clearly a benefit of nuts that helps your heart. It might have something to do with all the other vitamins, minerals and nutrients found naturally in peanut butter.

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    3. Gives you more potassium.

    I love salty foods, don’t you? The only problem is, sodium isn’t that good for us. We have to eat it in moderation, but it’s hard because it’s so present in every food! Sodium can be bad for your cardiovascular system, but potassium can counteract the dangers of sodium. And, guess what? Peanut butter is an excellent source of sodium! Pair it with your salty snacks (in moderation!) and feel better about what you eat.

    4. Is a source of healthy fat.

    A lot of people think peanut butter is bad for you because it contains saturated fats. In reality, saturated fat isn’t as big of a toxin as people make it out to be. Peanut butter actually contains more unsaturated fat than saturated, which means it has “healthy fats.” I know that sounds like an oxymoron, but it’s true! A healthy body needs healthy fats like avocado and olive oil and… you guessed it, peanut butter!

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    5. Is an energy booster.

    Since peanut butter contains a decent amount of protein and “healthy fat,” it has the perfect amount of calories to give you energy for your activities! Just another great reason to eat peanut butter for breakfast and get a good kick off for your day!

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      6. Is rich in fiber.

      Who would have thought, but those two tablespoons of peanut butter that give you seven grams of protein also give you two grams of fiber! You need a fair amount of fiber to ensure healthy bodily functions, but it’s nice to know you can get some from delicious peanut butter instead of just cardboard-tasting cereals.

      7. Helps with weight loss.

      Peanut butter is so delicious it seems more like a treat than a healthy food. But after reading all the perks so far, it doesn’t seem like a stretch that peanut butter helps with weight loss, does it? Because peanut butter has good protein and fiber content, it makes you feel fuller longer. This means you’re less hungry, and you’ll crave less junk food or unhealthy snacks. Focus on the peanut butter, and you’ll eat less overall, and your weight loss goals will be easier to manage!

      8. Packed with nutrients.

      Think about all the excellent points you’ve already learned – peanut butter contains protein, fiber, potassium and healthy fats. Additionally, one serving of peanut butter will give you 3 mg of vitamin E, which is an antioxidant. Also you get about 49 grams of magnesium, which helps with bone-building and muscle recovery. But wait, there’s more! You even get small, but important, amounts of zinc and vitamin B6, which helps boost immunity.

      Featured photo credit: Denise Krebs via flickr.com

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      Last Updated on May 22, 2019

      10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

      10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

      There are lots of studies that show if you do some exercise in the morning, you will be in a better mood all day long. You will have more energy and you will certainly be a better colleague, friend or partner.

      One psychologist at Duke University has researched the effects of exercise on depressed patients and he has come to the conclusion that exercise has a definite role in treating this condition and has an important role in preventing people from relapsing.[1] According to the New York Times, scientists have now established that exercise also boosts your brain power.[2]

      In addition, there are studies from the Appalachian State University which show that blood pressure can be reduced by doing regular morning exercise.[3]

      Here are 10 simple morning exercises that will help you feel great the whole day long. You can include some of them in your morning exercise routine or do them all at home without having to enrol in a gym. Consult your doctor before starting any form of exercise routine if you are new to this.

      1. Cat Camel Stretch

      Stretching exercises are useful for muscle toning and also preventing arthritis. They can either be dynamic or static.

      Dynamic ones such as the cat camel stretch, are particularly useful for doing other exercises in the morning. They are also beneficial at other times of the day, especially after long periods of sedentary work. This one is great for spinal flexibility and is a good warm up exercise.

      Kneel down on all fours. Start by rounding your back just like a camel so that your head will try to meet your pelvis. This is the camel position. Then lower and lift your head so that your lower back is arched. This is the cat position. Do these movements slowly and smoothly. About 4 or 5 times.

      Here’s a video to guide you through:

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      2. Go for a Walk or a Run

      This is better done outside so that you can connect with nature but running inside on a treadmill is almost as good. You can time yourself and increase length and time according to your fitness program.

      Always have new goals to reach. Start with brisk walking and work up to running. At my age, I am still walking!

      The health benefits are considerable. You can build stronger bones and you can help to maintain your weight.

      Also, you are helping your heart to stay healthy and keeping your blood pressure low.

      Learn more about the benefits of running here: 8 Benefits of Running 5 Minutes Every Day You Didn’t Know

      3. Jumping Jacks

      Michelle Obama is a great fan of this exercise and has become “Jumper in Chief.”[4] They are great for cardiovascular health and also for toning muscles especially the calves and the deltoids.

      Stand with feet together. Jump while spreading your arms and legs. Return to first position and keep going! You can start with doing these for 1 minute and then gradually build up to the number you are comfortable with. Here’s how:

      4. Abductor Side Lifts

      Watch the video below to see how to do this exercise. These muscles are important because you use them everyday to run, get into the car or onto and off a bicycle. They are very important also for your core stability and prevent the pelvis from tilting.[5]

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      Do about 10 to 15 raises for each side like this:

      5. Balancing Table Pose

      This is a classic yoga pose. It benefits the spine, balance, memory and concentration.

      Start with the table pose (hands and knees). Breathe in before starting each movement. As you exhale, raise your left leg parallel to the floor as you raise the right arm, also parallel to the floor. Breathe in as you lower arm and leg. Repeat for the other side. 10 repetitions on each side is a good starting point.

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        6. Leg Squats

        Not just legs are involved but also hips and knees.

        Stand with your feet a bit further out from your hips. Arms are out in front of you. Then lower yourself as if you wanted to sit down until you reach a 90 degree angle. You can go down further if you want to. Then return to the starting position. Repeat 15 times for 2 sets for beginners.

        The benefits are that these exercises help with knee stability and can benefit the leg muscles such as quadriceps, hamstrings and calves.[6]

        7. Push Ups

        You start lying down (face down) but with your body held up at arm’s length. Your hands should be in line with your shoulders. Breathe in as you lower your body. That is fairly easy. Now, as you exhale, you have to get back up to the starting position.

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        An easier version to start with is to bend your legs at the knees so you do not have to lift your whole body.

        Beginners may take up to a month to be able to do 100 push ups so you will have to start with a very small number and gradually increase it.

        This exercise is great for strengthening the chest, shoulders and the triceps. It is a great strengthening exercise for many muscle groups. In fact, most muscles from the toes to the shoulders are being used.

        8. Bicycle Crunches

        There are numerous crunch exercises targeting the abs. The bicycle crunch is a variation where you work more muscle groups. Aim for 15 to 20 reps to start off with.

        Watch the video to see how this is done correctly:

        9. Lunges

        Stand with feet shoulder width apart. Place your hand on your hips. Take one giant step forward with the right leg. Make sure the knee does not go too far forward, that is, past your toes. The left knee will go down to almost floor level. Alternate the legs as you go on.

        Try to do a set of between 8 and 12 reps for each leg. It is important to allow for a day of rest, so this exercise should be done on alternate days, especially if you are using weights.

        This exercise is great for strengthening and toning the quadriceps, glutes and hamstrings.

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        10. Bicep Curls

        You can do this sitting down so if you spend a lot of time on the phone, this is a great exercise to do.

        Choose suitable dumbbells or another household object that you can easily hold. Sit down with the dumbbell in your hand. You need to sit forward a bit so that your triceps can lean on your thigh to give you support.

        Then bring the weighted arm up to shoulder length and then down again. Exhale as you lift the weight and inhale as you lower it.

        Here’re some important notes before you start doing this exercise:

        Try to do one or two sets of about ten repetitions for each arm and then switch arms.

        These exercises are really useful for toning the arm muscles.[7] In addition, they can strengthen and tone the brachioradialis muscle located in the forearm. These are the muscles we use to pick up things when we flex the arm at the elbow so we use these muscles countless times a day.

        You may have to build in a rest day for the heavier exercises, numbers 6–10. On the rest days, you can do gentler stretching exercises and also some walking or running.

        Morning exercise is not only a great mood booster, but will help you keep your weight down and also sleep better![8] Start including one or some of these exercises in your morning routine!

        More Articles About Exercises for Beginners

        Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

        Reference

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