Nut butter have absolutely boomed lately, but what is important to look for when picking a nut butter? Nut butters can differ greatly and while some are high nutrition, other can be compared to a piece of candy. To make it a little bit easier, here are our Top 4 Guidelines when picking a nut butter!
1. Go nuts for nuts
The one thing I think most people get is that nut butter is made from, yes you guessed it, nuts! But just like people, every kind of nut has a unique energy value and profile, so you should choose your nut butter depending on what you're using your nut butter for and what nutrients you want and need in your diet. What most of them have in common though is that they're high in healthy fats, fiber and important nutrients such as vitamin C, B, E, Zinc, Calcium, Magnesium and Antioxidants. A portion of mixed nuts in your diet can thereby help to increase and stabilize your energy levels, boost your immune system, improve your complexion and protecting both your heart and your brain, just to mention a few of these nutrition bombs benefits! Although the high fat levels in nuts may have you running scared if you're trying to lose weight, there’s no evidence that nuts cause weight gain as part of a healthy diet, on the contrary, a small 30g handful a day can help with weight loss.
2. No added crap
This is an important one; Nut butters should be made from nuts! In the market today, not all nut butters consist only, or even for the most part, of nuts. Many of the products in your local store are full of additives such as oil, sugar, salt, preservatives and artificial colours and flavours, which might completely ruin the whole benefits of taking a nut butter in the first place. Therefore, when choosing a nut butter, make sure it consists of only finely grained nuts and nothing else. It is really as simple as that and you'll get all the good stuff and none of the bad, leaving you and your body feeling amazing!!
3. Activated nuts
As mentioned above, nuts are a nutrient dense food and naturally low in sugar – that means a small handful a day can help supercharge your health and keep your energy levels stable! However, there is a compound present in nuts that prevent them from sprouting or germinating before they're fully ready, which makes it hard for our bodies to fully absorb the nutrients present in the nuts. To solve this and make the most of this superfood, nuts can be activated, which means letting them soak in water for a certain amount of hours. In the activation process, you break down the phytic acid in the nuts which improves the digestibility and increases the nutrient absorption of minerals such as zinc, calcium and magnesium.
4. Go organic
Today, a lot of the food we eat is sprayed with synthetic pesticides, sewage sludge- petroleum-based fertilizers and as if that isn't enough, have bioengineered genes (GMOs). Making us human guiny pigs as we, to this day, don't know the full effects these have on our bodies and minds, although there is a certain amount of evidence showing that overexposure might even have directly life-threatening effects... When it comes to nuts, it has even been suggested to shift around the labels to reduce the risk of poisoning from pesticides. However, the easiest way to get around this problems is to simply go organic. By going organic you can rest assured that you'll get the full benefits from the nuts you eat without downsides, as potential pesticide poisoning (!), just the way it should be!!
Hopefully, the guidelines will make it a little bit easier for you when picking a nut butter. Obviously, we've used all of our guidelines when choosing a nut butter to feature on This Natural Life. The best and only option we found that met all of our requirements for a good nut butter is Food to Nourish. They just keep it simple by not adding anything other than high quality, organic, activated nuts in their nut butters and for us that why they're the obvious choice!