Is it okay to eat peanut butter before bed?

Peanut butter has many nutritional benefits. Eating a small amount of peanut butter as part of a healthy snack before bed can help improve the quality of sleep and prevent overeating and weight gain the next day.

Peanut butter is a nutrient-dense, high-calorie food that contains vitamins, minerals, protein, and fiber.

Eating a small amount of peanut butter before bed can improve the quality of sleep. For maximum health benefits, a person should choose a natural peanut butter whose ingredients contain only peanuts.

This article explores the nutritional value of peanut butter and how it can help sleep. It also examines why sleep is important, how a lack of sleep can affect overall health, and the benefits and harms of late night snacks.

The nutritional content of peanuts can be beneficial to health when a person consumes them in moderate amounts. Peanuts are full of nutrients.

Ounce for ounce, peanuts contain more protein than any other nut, at 7 grams per ounce (oz). They also contain:

  • fiber
  • antioxidants
  • vitamins and minerals
  • amino acids

Peanut protein is a vegetable proteins, and health experts encourage people to eat more of this food. Other health professionals say 1 tablespoon of peanut butter equals 1 ounce of lean meat.

In addition, not eating enough protein can interfere with a person’s sleep. A Study 2021 reported that improved sleep quality was associated with higher protein intake, especially in combination with regular exercise.

Peanuts have a high fat content, but it mainly consists of monounsaturated fat, a type of fat that offers health benefits. In combination with the protein and fiber found in peanut butter, these fats can make someone look like they’re fuller longer, stabilize blood sugar levels, and help them sleep.

Peanuts are also high in calories: 1 tablespoon of peanuts contains about 90 calories. However, a person should limit their serving size if they are not actively trying to to gain weight.

Combining a small amount of peanut butter with an apple provides a healthy and filling snack that consists of lots of protein, fiber and fat.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) says all peanut butter should contain at least 90% peanuts in the final product.

According to the recommendations of health experts, choosing peanut butter made entirely from peanuts means that there is no added sugar or fats.

Additionally, peanut butter made from unbleached peanuts – with their skin still in place – has been shown to contain higher levels of fiber and antioxidants.

Peanuts also contain significant amounts of antioxidants, amino acids, and vitamins. People who lack these micronutrients, especially vitamins A, C, D, E and K, may have difficulty sleeping. Peanut butter also provides many micronutrients and is a good source of vitamin E.

In addition, it contains the amino acid tryptophan, which the body needs to make serotonin and melatonin. Melatonin and Serotonin both help regulate the sleep-wake cycle and promote quality sleep.

Late night snacking can lead to weight gain, and studies highlight a link between diabetes and cardiovascular disease. A Study 2019 suggests that this may be because people tend to choose higher calorie foods in the evening.

During sleep, the metabolism slows down and food take more time digest.

Many people also tend to overeating at night, especially if they are distracted. Psychological or emotional needs can also influence individual nighttime eating behaviors.

Eat mindfully – paying attention to food and what they eat – can reduce overeating.

Portion size is also important. As a general rule, snacks should not contain more than 250 calories and count in a person’s total daily calories.

Daily calorie needs vary with activity and age, but most adult women need 1,600-2,200 per day, while adult males need 2,000 to 3,200.

As part of a balanced diet, a small portion of Peanut Butter can be a nutritious choice for a nighttime snack.

Combining it with a fruit, such as an apple or banana, or vegetables, such as celery, increases the fiber content and nutritional value of the snack.

Some research shows that eating a healthy snack before bed can help promote restful sleep and regulate a person’s appetite, helping them maintain moderate calorie intake the next day.

People should also aim to eat mindfully and not get distracted by eating at night to help them consume appropriate portions and feel fuller in the hours before bed.

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