Is Peanuts a Fruit or Vegetable?
Peanuts, also known as ground nuts, are a widely consumed food around the world. They can be eaten either raw, roasted or cooked, and are found in many dishes, dessert, and snacks. But what many of us may not know is whether peanuts are considered a fruit or vegetable.
Are Peanuts a Fruit or Vegetable?
Technically, a peanut is both a fruit and a vegetable. This is because it is classified botanically as a fruit. Peanuts are known as drupe, which means that they consist of a single, hard seed which is enclosed within a thin shell and surrounded by a protective outer wall.
Despite being a fruit, peanuts are actually considered a vegetable in a culinary sense, due to how they are harvested, grown, and prepared. When peanuts are cultivated, the mature pods are picked, dried, and shelled to be eaten.
The Health Benefits of Peanuts
As well as being a delicious snack food, there are a number of health benefits associated with peanuts. They are a source of both healthy fats and protein, and can help to maintain good cardiovascular health. Peanuts are also a great source of vitamin E, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium, and zinc, as well as b-vitamins including thiamin, riboflavin and niacin.
Here are a few of the main health benefits associated with peanuts:
- Reduce Cholesterol: Due to their high unsaturated fat content, peanuts are known to help lower levels of bad cholesterol and help protect against coronary heart diseases.
- Help Maintain Blood Pressure: Magnesium, potassium and vitamin E in peanuts help to reduce blood pressure, which can help to protect against heart attack, stroke, and other cardiovascular diseases.
- Promote Healthy Skin: The Vitamin E in peanuts helps to improve skin health, reduce wrinkles and promote a healthy, glowing complexion.
- Fight Diabetes: The high levels of monounsaturated fat helps to lower the risk of type 2 diabetes, as well as improving glucose intolerance.
Ultimately, peanuts are both a fruit and a vegetable, and provide a number of health benefits. So next time you reach for your bag of ground nuts, you know that your snack choice is also having some beneficial health effects.