Peanuts can protect against early death from cancer and heart disease, suggests a new study conducted at The Maastricht University.
The study found that men and women who eat at least 10g of nuts or peanuts and not peanut butter per day have a lower risk of dying from several major causes of death than people who do not consume them.
Researchers in the Netherlands said peanuts and tree nuts both contain various vitamins, fiber, antioxidants and compounds such as monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids that can possibly contribute to the lower death rates.
They said peanut butter contains salt and trans fatty acids that could inhibit the protective effects of peanuts. Women who ate nuts were also often leaner, had never smoked and were less likely to report diabetes.
Lead researcher Piet van den Brandt said that a higher intake was not associated with further reduction in mortality risk. The study is published in the International Journal of Epidemiology