Some Sticky Myths About Peanut Butter

Mmm. Peanut butter. It’s a staple in most households. But is what you know about it true? Find out here…

Most of us grew up eating peanut butter, and let’s admit it: we still eat it all the time, even as adults. It’s tasty, it’s cheap, and it’s good for you, right? Well, the first two are true enough, but that last one can be argued (and we’ll argue it). Good old PB does have its myths, so let’s take a look at a few.

Myth #1: Peanut butter is incredibly good for you.

Yes and no. You’d think so, given the low carb content per serving and all those vitamins. Charitable organizations use peanut oil to nurse malnourished children back to health for good reason. The problem is when the peanut butter makers add sugar and hydrogenated oils to “improve” the flavor.

You already know that too much sugar is bad for you. As for hydrogenated oils, you might as well eat lard. Not all oils and fats are unhealthy, but studies have linked the hydrogenated ones to heart disease and high cholesterol.

Look for peanut butter made of nothing but peanuts, period. Avoid overindulging in the practice of combining it with processed breads and sugary jellies, and it’s a very healthy snack.

Myth #2: George Washington Carver invented peanut butter.

Not really. We’ve all heard the story of Carver locking himself in a barn and inventing all kinds of things, including peanut butter, but actually he just invented (and patented) a better way of producing it. Peanut butter-like dishes have been prepared and eaten for thousands of years in other parts of the world.

Myth #3: You can shave with peanut butter.

You can. People have proved it in experiments. The myth arises from the claim (sometimes seen in those infamous email factoid lists) that it works just as well as shaving cream or soap. Not hardly! Even smooth peanut butter clogs the razor terribly, and heaven forbid you should use crunchy.

Worse, it leaves your skin greasy, and you get to smell like peanuts all day. While that may not seem such a terrible prospect, people will look at you funny.

Myth #4: Peanut butter causes acne.

Nope! For a long time people assumed it did, because it’s so oily. But studies show that it doesn’t trigger acne problems. Although oddly enough, it can help you lighten dark spots on your face if you apply the product to your skin. Avoid the jelly, though.

Bottom Line

Well, folks, there’s good news, bad news, and in-between news. Peanut butter doesn’t cause acne (yay!) but it can be terribly unhealthy unless you’re really choosy about what you buy (awww). Then again, peanut butter’s history is more complicated than you think… plus you can shave with it, if you really want.