Issues with Peanut Butter
Besides the fact that peanut butter can cause serious allergic reactions, such as anaphylaxis, and even death in someone with a severe allergy to peanuts, there are other issues with this food as well.
According to the National Peanut Board, there are 150 deaths each year from food allergies in general, not from peanut allergies. Even one death from peanuts is too many.
The number of children with food allergies
According to the AAAAI, 8 percent of U.S. children have a food allergy. Many people believe that food allergies disappear as a child gets older, but this is not always the case. Statistics show that 6 percent of children who are 0-2 years old have a food allergy, while over 8.5 percent of teens who are 14-18 years old have a food allergy. Peanut allergies are the most common of all food allergies.
Countless people have been sickened by tainted peanut butter
In the past few years, there have been several peanut butter recalls after people in various states were stricken with salmonella. The tainted peanut butter contained bacteria that resulted in vomiting, cramps, and diarrhea in those who ate the peanut butter.
By the time a peanut butter product is recalled, many people have usually become sick from it. Sunland peanut butter was closed down in 2012 after the FDA found several safety measures that were not being followed by the company.
Peanuts are sometimes contaminated with mold
Another issue with peanuts is that they are not tree nuts that grow above the ground, but they grow in the ground. The peanut is actually a legume that is often stored in burlap bags where mold from the ground grows on the peanuts.
The shell of the peanut is soft and pliable, not like the hard shells of tree nuts. The peanut's soft shell allows mold, pesticides, and fungicides to permeate through it.
Peanuts sometimes continue to grow mold as they are shipped to retail stores or to peanut butter factories. The mold can grow on organic peanuts as well as on non-organic peanuts.
Non-organic peanuts are full of pesticides
Peanut farmers who produce non-organic peanuts usually need to use pesticides to prevent the peanut plants from being affected by insects. The plants are also treated with chemicals that act as fungicides to keep the peanuts from developing mold.
Switching to almond butter is a good alternative
Almonds grow on trees and have a hard protective shell. They are a much safer alternative for most people, especially for those who have a peanut allergy diagnosis. The exception is if you are allergic to tree nuts.
Almond butter or sunflower seed spread are two alternatives to eating peanut butter. They are considered to be much healthier than peanut butter for most people.