We Are Sad Now

You may recall that a few weeks ago I said that if you wanted to make That Nice Boy I Married sad, you would throw away egg yolks. I'm afraid something else has come to my attention that makes him and me sad, both, and will likely sadden you as well: Apparently peanuts are atherogenic. In other words, cause plaques in arteries. It is to weep.

There is some debate on what, exactly, in peanuts causes arterial lesions. Some researchers blame it on the fats in peanut oil. This article starts with the chilling words, The atherogenicity of peanut oil is well established... In an interesting side note, in this study, a comparison of the atherogenic effects of olive oil and peanut oil in rabbits, olive oil-fed rabbits had higher levels of fat in the blood and liver, but less arterial damage, another arrow pointing away from blood cholesterol as the cause of heart disease.

However, the chief suspect is lectins , toxic substances found in many plant foods. Apparently the lectin in peanut oil attacks the arteries. I am reminded, unhappily, of a comment made by Kurt Harris MD, of the wonderful PaleoNu blog, that he preferred to eat animals rather than plants, because animals stopped fighting back once you'd killed them. Plant toxins, on the other hand, while some can to be reduced by various cooking and processing techniques, tend to persist.

Anyway, this is very sad news, especially for That Nice Boy I Married, who is deeply, deeply devoted to peanut butter. I only hope I can get him to shift his affections over to almond butter; we'll see. I doubt we'll stop eating peanuts entirely, but our consumption will definitely drop, and I'll be far less likely to use peanuts or peanut butter in recipes.

And now I need to try making Cocoa-Almond Porkies.

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Peanuts are sadly full of

Peanuts are sadly full of PUFA'S, as are all nuts aside from macadamia nuts. They are also often packaged in rancid vegetable oil. Finally, many peanuts become conatminated with a mould called aflatoxin. Such a pity as I love peanuts!

How about tahine?

Are sesame seeds and their butter okay?

What about "organic" PB?

Dana, I am sorry to hear about your Godmother. I hope everything goes well. God bless you both.

I heard someone speaking on Organic foods lately and they stated that if you buy only one food under the banner "organic," make it be peanut butter. Is there any chance in the world that it actually makes a difference?

Hi Dana, That study was from

Hi Dana,

That study was from 1984... There has been much more progress since then on peanuts and their effects on heart health. In fact peanuts, among other nuts, have even have a heart health claim from FDA stating "Scientific evidence suggests, but does not prove that eating 1.5 oz per day of most nuts, including peanuts, as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol may reduce the risk of heart disease."

In addition, Harvard Medical School lists nuts, like peanuts, as one of their 11 foods for maintaining cholesterol levels.

I hope this updated information is helpful to your readers and your husband!

It makes you wonder

if much of anything is safe. None of us get out alive, but I was hoping not to speed up the process. My husband is a big peanut butter eater.....sandwiches....and I love peanut butter in savory dishes. I also snack on those little packages of planters peanuts that make such a great available anywhere low carb snack. Now what?

Good substitute

This nut butter is absolutely delicious and addictive. The recipe comes from "Eat Fat, Lose Fat" by Mary Enig and Sally Fallon. They call for honey in their recipe.

2 cups toasted nuts such as pecans (our favorite), almonds, walnuts, or a mixture of whatever you like
1 tsp sea or kosher salt
2 tbs sugar free imitation honey or Splenda
3/4 cup coconut oil

Place nuts and salt in food processor and grind to a fine powder. Add honey or Splenda and coconut oil and process until "butter" becomes quite smooth. It will be somewhat liquid but will harden when chilled. Store in an airtight container in the fridge. Serve at room temp.

Oh, no!!

There will be a mutiny at my house if I even "think" about getting rid of peanuts around here! My DH will mourn their passing for sure! I make my own peanut butter; but, that won't help a thing will it? Oh, dear............


It was studies done on rabbits that started the whole lipid hypothesis madness. Rabbits are pure herbivores. What clogs thier arteries probably says nothing about humans.


Peanuts are one of my major hang-up foods - eat too many out of the shell, but this might just be the spur to cure that habit. I want to say thanks Dana, but I sense some pain or deprivation in my future.

Pain, indeed

I feel that pain,and how! I eat peanut butter by the spoonful.

That's Just Nuts!

Say it ain't so! I often eat a small bag of peanuts for my lunch on days when I can't stop for a real lunch....which is most days in the plumbing business! I don't know what to say! Other than I may have to switch to macadamias....the nut that Dr. Atkins raved about for it satiety and health benefits. Guess I'll have to make my own snack packs of 'em and keep 'em in my truck. Thanks Dana! Ron, aka The Former Donut Junkie.


BUMMER - but it is only one study - and as it is a legume so I eat it sparingly - but to cut it out!! Eek my DH would move out.

almond butter

while good, just not the same as peanut butter! :(

Not the same

No, not the same. And smoked almonds are super-yummy, but they'll never be peanuts-in-the-shell. I am very sad about this.