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Is Peanut Butter A Good Snack Before Workout?

Alex DePinto
Published by Alex DePinto
Fact checked by Donald Christman, BHSc FACT CHECKED
Last updated: July 16, 2022

A pre-workout meal is intended to raise your glucose and sugar levels as you'll have more energy and then exercise effectively for extended periods.

Being a huge fan of peanut butter in general, I’ve always wondered whether this delicious snack could be used as a pre-workout meal.

I worked together with a team of dieticians to get to know the nutritional importance of peanut butter and whether it can be considered a great pre-workout snack or not.

This is what I found.

Quick Summary

  • Peanut is rich in protein and carbohydrates, making it an excellent pre-workout meal to give you extra energy
  • Peanut butter stores fewer simple carbs and oils, which causes blood sugar to increase
  • More peanut butter combined with a regular workout plan will help you attain your weight loss objectives faster

Peanut Butter As A Pre-workout Snack

Peanut butter spread on a toast

If you've been in the fitness world long enough, you can agree that consuming protein and carbohydrates before an exercise is good.

Peanut is the perfect pre-workout snack to fuel and boost your exercise activity as it’s a rich source of proteins and carbohydrates.

If you eat it 30-45 minutes before your workout, your body will continue to use those nutrients from that peanut sandwich even after your training session; therefore, it's a good post-workout as well [1].

Peanut Butter Nutrition Profile

A scoop of sticky peanut butter

This butter is a protein-rich spread that is popular all over the globe. It's made with roasted ground peanuts that are mixed into a puree.

The finished product contains a variety of nutrient content that comes with great health benefits [2].

Peanut butter consists of the following nutrients:

  • Protein: PB has around 35% protein, making it a rich plant-based lean protein supply. Each serving contains 9g of protein.
  • Carbohydrate: PB has a low carb content. The carbohydrates per serving of peanuts contribute to approximately 13 to 16% of the overall weight, resulting in a Glycemic index of 14.
  • B-6 vitamin: PB contains 0.17 g of vitamin B-6 per serving, which is over 14 % of an adult's recommended dietary allowance of 1.3 mg. Vitamins like B-6 fuel more than 100 enzyme physiological functions and can also benefit heart and central nervous system function [3].
  • Fats: 2 tablespoons of PB has 3.3g and 12.3 g of saturated and unsaturated fats respectively. These healthy fats can help reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes and heart diseases [4].
  • Magnesium: Each peanut serving contains 57 mg of magnesium, contributing to the recommended daily amounts (RDA) of 400-420 mg quantity for males and 310-320 mg for women [5]. This nutrient also found in a banana is necessary to maintain good health since it helps in several biochemical activities in your stomach.

"Peanut butter foods are nutrient-dense, meaning they pack a powerful nutritional punch in every bite."

-Leslie J. Bonci, MPH

Peanut Butter and Your Fitness Goals

Chopped bananas pouring into bowl with peanut butter in a jar

Here are the other great benefits of peanut butter that will help you reach fitness goals faster.

Helps With Weight Loss

You may also lose some weight by incorporating peanut butter into your foods. Peanut has protein, carbohydrates, healthy fat, and fiber good for weight loss.

As a result, eating peanut butter sandwich bread combined with a regular workout plan will help you attain your objectives faster by making you feel heavy and fuller for longer.

This keeps hunger at bay while burning more fat and calories when working out.

Stronger Muscles and Nerves

Magnesium in peanuts has been shown to help treat headaches, aids muscle recovery and beats weariness [6].

PB is a rich supply of this nutrient, with one two-tablespoon meal providing roughly 15% of your recommended dietary allowance.

Peanut Butter Preserves Muscular Mass

A good muscular mass

Bulk muscular mass preservation and endurance are critical during the process of losing weight.

If you're starting your weight loss journey and are on a low-protein diet, you'll likely experience some muscle loss that can drastically lower your metabolic and digestion rate.

It also aids in weight maintenance as well as kidney health [7].

Peanut Butter Lowers The Risk of Heart Disease

Resveratrol, an antioxidant found in peanuts, has been shown to decrease cardiovascular irritation, drop blood pressure, enhance circulation, and calm veins and arteries [8].

Cons Of Peanut Butter as a Pre-workout

Peanut butter with peanuts

Despite the incredible health benefits that a spoon of peanut spread gives you, it has its disadvantages as a pre-workout. These are:

  • Peanut butter has a lot of carbohydrates and calories, with two tablespoons containing about 180 calories. As a typical binge food for dieting individuals, the extra calories, fats, and no workouts could lead to weight gain.
  • Peanut butter allergies are the second most common food allergies. If you're allergic to peanuts, eating nut butter could cause life-threatening issues as far as allergic reactions are concerned [9]. It would be best to substitute PB for almond butter or different nut butter.
  • In addition to allergic reactions, eating excess peanut butter nutrition amounts can cause your stomach to develop an intolerance to it. If you ate peanut butter and experienced anything weird, it would be best to get your blood work done to check for any signs of peanut intolerance.
  • Peanut butter jam lacks vitamin C minerals, which your body needs to produce collagen, a building element of bones, tendons, and ligaments, particularly for bodybuilders.

Related Article: Best Pre-workout Snacks

FAQs

Does Peanut Butter Help With Gym Performance?

Yes. Peanut butter will help with gym performance. It has proteins and carbs for muscle building.

When Should You Eat Peanut Butter Before a Workout?

You should eat peanut butter 30-45 minutes before working out to give the proteins enough time to be broken down and absorbed in the body.

Is Peanut Butter Good For Abs?

Peanut butter is good for abs. The protein content in PB promotes muscle growth around the abdomen area.

Is Peanut Butter Good Before Running?

Yes, peanut butter is good before running because it gives you proteins and energy to sustain a strenuous running session.

Is Peanut Butter A Good Pre-workout Snack?

Peanut butter contains nutrients and fiber that are beneficial if you consume it before exercising. These nutrients digest and provide the fuel boost your muscles need to perform any exercise activity.

With a rich nutty taste, peanut butter leaves you feeling fuller for longer, curbing your craving for junk snacks. This eventually limits your calorie intake and fastens your weight loss.

For an even smoother and faster workout and weight loss experience, we recommend combining this protein-packed spread with some of the best organic pre-workouts to sweat more and get the most out of your training session.


References:

  1. https://www.livestrong.com/article/522677
  2. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/is-peanut-butter-bad-for-you#protein
  3. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/219662#
  4. https://www.health.harvard.edu/nutrition/ask-the-doctor-why-is-peanut-butter-healthy-if-it-has-saturated-fat
  5. https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/magnesium/#
  6. https://www.thejoint.com/utah/sandy/sandy-45003/
  7. https://www.health.harvard.edu/nutrition/ask-the-doctor-why-is-peanut-butter-healthy-if-it-has-saturated-fat
  8. https://www.webmd.com/diet/peanut-butter-good-for-you
  9. http://www.slhd.nsw.gov.au/rpa/allergy/resources/allergy/peanutallergy.pdf

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