Learn these five simple and easy steps to make your toast with peanut butter healthy and delicious. The answer to the question is peanut butter on toast healthy, in fact, is: it depends. It can be very healthy, or not so healthy.
The good news is, you can make peanut butter on toast an healthy option as part of healthy eating habits following the 5 steps below.
Is peanut butter on toast healthy? Make it healthy with these 5 simple steps
- Choose healthy wholegrain bread for your toast
- Use 100% peanut butter, this means butter made with only one ingredient: peanuts
- Toast your bread just lightly to keep it healthy and delicious
- Learn how much peanut butter on toast is right for you
- Beware of what else you eat in the same meal, during the day, and during the week
1. Choose healthy wholegrain bread for your toast
Choose wholegrain bread with the shortest list of ingredients and make sure that the first ingredient is wholemeal flour. Also, make sure that the ingredients list does not include things that you do not understand. If it’s organic, even better. To find more, explore these whole grains examples and why they are healthy.
2. Choose 100% peanut butter, this means butter made with only one ingredient: peanuts
Peanuts and peanut butter can be healthy. They are nutritious, as they contain high amounts of protein and fiber, and they also contain mono- and polyunsaturated fats that can lower “bad” LDL cholesterol.
Peanut butter is also a rich source (which means includes 20% or more of the recommended daily value) of vitamin E, pantothenic acid, folate, niacin, and vitamin B6. It is also rich in minerals such as manganese, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc, copper. It also contains moderate amounts (10-19% of the recommended daily value) of thiamin, riboflavin, iron, and potassium.
In addition, eating nuts is linked with significantly lower risk of heart attack or stroke.
The healthiest option when buying peanut butter, is just making sure it is made of only one ingredient: peanuts! 100% peanut butters are easy to find in organic supermarket and online, including on Amazon.
Other less healthy and common options include peanut butters that are made of peanuts, various types of added vegetable oils, and salt.
3. Toast your bread just lightly to keep it healthy and delicious
In addition to make sure you use wholemeal bread, it is good practice to toast it lightly, so that it is crunchy but not burnt.
When grains are burnt, and they become dark, from very dark brown to black, they develop a substance called acrylamide that potentially has a harmful effect on health.
As you can see on this FDA article on acrylamide, however, there is no reason to be alarmed or obsessed about acrylamide. Scientific evidence has shown that acrylamide causes cancer in animals exposed to very high doses of it. However, there is no such evidence in humans and, in any case, these effects on animals were observed with such high doses that can not be easily obtained just by eating a few slices of toasted bread.
Having said that, my recommendation is to avoid toasting your wholegrains bread to much, just for a common sense precautionary approach. In addition, the taste of burnt bread is far from being pleasant for most people, so making sure to toast your bread just slightly is a win-win situation: good for your health and good for your palate.
4. Learn how much peanut butter on toast is right for you
Peanut butter is a caloric dense food so it can add a lot of calories to your daily intake. 100g of peanut butter bring about 600 kcal.
You are the only person who can assess how much peanut butter you should eat, this depends on whether you are a sedentary or an active person, if you are under- / normal- / over- weight and on what else you eat as part of your eating routine.
Learn more about how to maintain a stable, healthy weight by developing healthy eating habits.
5. Beware what else you eat in the same meal, during the day, and during the week
Ultimately, a very important factor that determines whether peanut butter on toast is healthy or not for you, is what else you eat within the same meal, in your day, and in the whole week. A part from a few exceptions, there are not unhealthy or healthy foods, but rather unhealthy or healthy eating habits.
To help you taking control of your eating habits, take a look at my free weekly meal planner for healthy eating.