Pregnancy is a wonderful gift that only women could experience it. Being pregnant is like a noble job directly ordered by God for women to accomplish, something that men could not do by themselves. During pregnancy a fetus is magically growing inside the woman’s womb until the time the baby was born to the world. To make sure optimal development of the fetus before they were born, mothers should consume high nutritious foods because that’s the only way the fetus could get food. When it comes to the list of the foods mothers should consume during pregnancy, the list will be endless but you could consider the benefits of peanuts during pregnancy since peanuts are not only delicious but also packed with vitamins, minerals and other natural compounds that are great for pregnancy.
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What Are Peanuts?
Peanuts which mostly preferred as nuts are legume crops that are cultivated for their edible seeds. Peanuts come from family Fabaceae so peanuts come from the same family as bean and pea. As snack peanuts available in two forms, shelled and unshelled peanuts. From the flavor peanuts are not really different with almonds and walnuts though it depends on each person taste, which flavor they prefer the most. For the cultivated area peanuts now are grown in almost every country in the world with Asia as the biggest producer though peanuts just entered Asia after the European traders brought them. Do you know that initially peanuts were only for livestock foods? However, in the late of 19th century US Government encouraged their people to consume more peanuts due to its benefits to human health and even George Washington, as part of the program, have developed hundreds of peanuts recipes.
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Nutritional Values of Peanuts
Peanuts are considered as healthy snack. However, it doesn’t mean you could consume it without knowing about the nutrients packed in peanuts. By knowing the nutrients contained in peanuts, you could measure how much peanuts you need during pregnancy because surely the everyone’s need is different from another.
Serving Size: 100 grams
|Energy||567 kcal – 29%|
|Carbohydrate||16.13 g – 12%|
|Protein||25.8 g – 46%|
|Total Fats||49.24 g – 165%|
|Dietary Fiber||8.5 g – 22%|
|Folates||240 µg – 60%|
|Niacin||12 mg – 75%|
|Pantothenic Acid||1.767 mg – 35%|
|Pyridoxine||0.348 mg – 27%|
|Riboflavin||0.135 mg – 10%|
|Thiamin||0.64 mg – 53%|
|Vitamin E||8.33 mg – 55%|
|Calcium||92 mg – 9%|
|Copper||1.144 mg – 127%|
|Iron||4.58 mg – 57%|
|Magnesium||168 mg – 42%|
|Manganese||1.934 mg – 84%|
|Phosphorus||76 mg – 54%|
|Selenium||7.2 µg – 13%|
|Zinc||3.27 mg – 30%|
|Potassium||705 mg – 15%|
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From the table above, surely you have a general picture of how much peanuts you could consume daily. The key is to consume it in moderate amount but sometimes you need to make sure that daily intake of certain nutrient could be fulfilled to make sure optimal development of fetus. Furthermore, below are the benefits of peanuts during pregnancy that will give you reasons why you should add this healthy and delicious snack to your daily diet.
- Excellent Source for Folate
During pregnancy consuming food rich of folate is highly recommended and peanuts are one of them. Per 100 grams of peanuts could cover about 60% daily intake of folate. It is a common knowledge that folate is essential for the fetus development especially in the early trimester.
- Natural Source of Plant-based Protein
Protein is essential for a mother during pregnancy and 100 gram of peanuts contains quite high protein to fulfill the daily intake.
- Prevents Birth Defect
Birth defect could occur when the development of fetus is disturbed or there are enough nutrients to support the development. Peanuts are packed with vitamins and minerals which are great for pregnancy like folate to support optimal growth and minerals like iron and calcium to make sure enough stock of red blood cells.
- Promotes Optimal Development of Brain
Peanuts are great food for brain. During pregnancy, fetus got foods from the mother and folate consumed by mother is not only beneficial for the mother but also the development of brain in the fetus. If you want to have healthy and smart baby, eat peanuts during pregnancy.
- Source of Calories for Mother
The need of calories in each mother may different but calories are essential for energy booster. During pregnancy, a mother may suffer fatigue and getting tired easily. To help boosting the energy, peanuts may help to restore it.
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- Contains Healthy Fats
Not all fats are bad and peanuts contain some healthy fats that are great for mother during pregnancy. Healthy fats are great to promote healthy heart since during pregnancy mothers are in high risk of blood pressure.
- Lowers the Risk of Allergic Diseases
Recent studies have stated that mothers who are consuming peanuts during pregnancy could lower the risk of allergic diseases. Not only foods allergic like peanut allergic but also other types of allergic like asthma.
- Helps Control Blood Pressure
High blood pressure during pregnancy could be really fatal for both mother and the fetus. That’s why very important to always keep blood pressure in check. To help controlling blood pressure, adding peanuts to your daily diet is highly recommended because basically peanuts are great for heart.
- Prevents Gestational Diabetes
From the table about you could see that peanuts are quite rich of manganese. This mineral has important role in regulating blood sugar level during pregnancy to prevent gestational diabetes. Furthermore, manganese is also promoting optimal absorption of calcium.
- Fights Depression
During pregnancy a mother is in risk of stress and depression. Well, some studies have shown mothers who are consuming peanuts are much happier than those who don’t. So, whenever you feel stress, just snacking away with peanuts.
- Lowers the Risk of Weight Gain
Obesity during pregnancy is never good for both mother and the baby. That’s why managing your weight is very important and peanuts, though they contain fats and calories but the fats are healthy fats and they are packed with other nutrients that could help you controlling the calories.
- Promotes Healthy Skin during Pregnancy
One of the problems that every mother should deal with during pregnancy is skin problem. While they are forbidden to use cosmetic due to its chemical contents, they could handle the skin problem just by consuming peanuts. The vitamin E and antioxidants will help prevents all the skin conditions.
- Source of Vitamin E
Vitamin E is the reason why a pregnant mother should look great. Vitamin E promotes healthy skin and making sure there is no such skin condition a mother should face. So, they could focus on their pregnancy instead to give birth to a healthy baby.
- Great Source of Omega 3 Fatty Acids
If you think fish is not your friend during pregnancy but you clearly know that you need great source of omega 3 fatty acids, you could replace fish with peanuts because they contains quite high healthy fats.
- Excellent Source of Vitamin B Complex
From the table mentioned above you could see how high the content of vitamin B complex found in peanuts per 100 grams. Most of them could fulfill almost half the daily intake of vitamin B.
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- Contains Powerful Antioxidants
Antioxidants are not only solution to anti-cancer but during pregnancy, antioxidants could help mother maintaining their immunity system so they would not fall sick easily.
- Rich of Minerals
Looking for fast solution to fulfill your daily intake of minerals during pregnancy, peanuts are the solution. You could see the nutritional table above about the value of minerals found in peanuts. 100 grams of peanuts are able to fulfill the half daily intake of minerals your body needs.
- Super Healthy Snack
Well, during pregnancy you should make sure to consume enough food to guarantee optimal development of fetus. Adding peanuts to your daily diet because they are the super healthy snack that everyone loves.
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Cautions of Peanuts
Peanuts may be packed with vitamin, minerals and other natural compounds that have been proven to be beneficial during pregnancy. The list of benefits of peanuts during pregnancy mentioned above are the facts proven scientifically. However, still there are some cautions of peanuts you should aware as well.
- Allergic reaction is one of the common things that could occur when consuming peanuts. If a mother was once diagnosed to be allergic to peanuts, she should not consume it.
- There are some studies that are also stated, too much peanuts consumed during pregnancy could increase the risk of allergy reaction to the baby when they were born. So, it is better to consume it in moderate amount.
- Peanuts butter might be delicious but still consuming peanuts in their true form is highly recommended because peanuts butter have been through some processes and you should be careful with the amount of refined sugar in peanuts butter.
- Be careful with salty peanuts snack as well because they may be delicious to consume during pregnancy but the salt contains sodium that could increase the blood pressure level. High blood pressure during pregnancy could be really fatal.
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Peanuts are healthy snack that mothers could add to their daily diet, especially in the early stage of pregnancy when morning sickness is the worst. Just by eating peanuts as snack you could at least making sure the baby inside your womb is still getting the nutrients they need to develop. However, you should aware of the cautions mentioned above if you want to get all the benefits of peanuts during pregnancy and not the vice versa.