Get-up-and-Go Peanut Crunch Bar

 Energy Around the Clock

  • We live in a 24/7 world!  Peanuts and peanut butter can provide the energy you need to keep going from morning through the night.
  • From breakfast to snacks through late night eating, choosing nutrient-dense foods like peanuts and peanut butter provide a nutritious boost in every bite.

The balance of career and family, plus some adventure means life doesn’t happen from nine to five anymore! If you’re like most people, your day starts early and ends late.  How do you keep up your energy with such a hectic schedule?  One secret weapon is good nutrition.  Being sure to fuel your body for the active lifestyle you lead, is essential.  Peanuts and peanut butter are a great addition to a balanced diet which contains protein, mostly good fats and fiber, as part of 30 essential vitamins and nutrients.

Nutritious Eats All Day

Breakfast is one of the most important ways to start an active day.  In fact, the Dietary Guidelines for Americas 2010 says, eating a nutrient-dense breakfast is an important behavior strategy to promote weight balance (USDA).

The Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010 also states that “Not eating breakfast has been associated with excess body weight, especially among children and adolescents. Consuming breakfast also has been associated with weight loss and weight loss maintenance, as well as improved nutrient intake.”

Peanut butter is a great way to help ensure a nutrient-dense breakfast. Two tablespoons of peanut butter is an excellent source (20% DV) of niacin and manganese. It is also a good source (10% DV) of magnesium, vitamin E, and phosphorus. Each of these nutrients is important for good health. In addition, two tablespoons of peanut butter contains about eight grams of protein and is a source of mostly good fats.  Try these delicious ways to start your day:

Mid-day and dinner meals should also be packed with nutrition.  Fruits and vegetables and whole grains are a great base for a nutrient-rich meal.  The USDA MyPlate recommends that half your plate be fruits and vegetables, while one-quarter should be whole grain and up to one quarter protein.  Peanuts and peanut butter are a great foods to include in your meals and can complement foods in all other categories.  Here are some winning entrée recipes that will make your lunch or dinner meal something special:

Snacking continues to be a popular way to help bridge the gap between meals.  Mini-meals or small bites can help you eat more vitamins and minerals, get enough protein and fiber, and stave off hunger.  However, snacking on the wrong things can cause more harm than good.  It’s important to choose nutrient-rich foods like peanuts and peanut butter to help make the most of snacks without busting the calorie budget.   These nutritious snacks are also a tasty way to help you keep your energy level up:

Of course, one of the best ways to enjoy peanuts is by the handful.  A small handful of peanuts (about 1 oz) provides seven grams of protein, two grams of fiber and 14 grams of (mostly good) fats, in just 170 calories.  Keep lightly salted (or unsalted if watching sodium) peanuts around when you need a quick boost of energy.

Bibliography

  1. U.S. Department of Agriculture and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2010.7th Edition, Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, December 2010.