No Nut Problems Here

You got problems eating peanuts,
I feel bad for you, son. 
I got 99 problems, 
But a nut ain't one.

Sorry, Jay-Z. Of all of your raps, that's the one I steal from the most. 

And I do - feel bad, that is - for those who cannot consume the humble peanut. What do they eat when there is nothing in the fridge but old 7-grain bread, boysenberry jam and peanut butter? 

I don't know about you, but I'm seriously rockin' that sammich tonight. Toasting the bread, but not too much or it will burn those yummy sunflower seeds on the crust; slathering on the organic peanut butter (no extra sugar and extraneous stuff, you know), and topping it off with some slamming boysenberry jam I carted back from an outdoor market in Minnesota - who knows when.  Hey, sugar never rots.

PB&J luv right here.
That's right. 
I know how to live. 
I might just get crazy and whip out the dark chocolate and almond milk for a nukin' good hot cioccolata (yeah, taking Italian classes now). 

Besides the fact that I'm too darned lazy to cook anything of import on a late Dr. Who watching Saturday night, the peanut and its other nutty chums have served me well in the past three years as I lost a good sized 12 year old in excess weight. For years I had laid off eating peanut butter, or chomping cashews because the alleged said nutritional powers that be said they were too fatty for normal consumption. Funny, I still gained weight eating the supposedly right things.

Too much Google research later I found that the wonderful combination of fruit and nuts were a much better whole food snack choice than the usual chips, dips and crackers. Nuts fill that 3pm, 'lunch is so gone' void quite nicely. 

The perfect combination of fats and protein make eating an ounce or two of nuts when you are feeling 'peckish' one of your best weight loss tools. I started carrying around a small pack of nuts that I'd chew on whenever I got the urge to grub. After a while, I noticed that it took me a day or so to eat an entire 2 ounce bag. Not bad. 

I would occasionally combine the nuts with berries, or as a once or twice a month treat - with raisins. That takes me back to my high school days when my best friend Pamela introduced me to the beauty of hot, fresh roasted peanuts and bags of raisins fresh off from the markets on Mulberry Street in Newark. We would munch that stuff as if it were the food of the gods. Who knew? We were right.

My absolute favorite nuts are cashews and pistachios. My mom loved them and bought them all of the time. I remember not wanting to eat pistachios as a child because they turned my fingers red. I'd wait for her to crack them open and then move in for the yummy kill. I was well into adulthood when I found out that they added dye to the nuts. What strangeness was that? 

It seems the 'stachios of old were imported from the Middle East and handpicked. This left stains on the shells which the purveyors were sure would turn off customers. Red and green were the dyes - double yuck. Now most of our pistachios are grown in California (yea!) and probably harvested by Terminator robot rejects, so no need to dye 'em (double yea! Buy Americano).

Any who, nuts are mega good for you . . . as long as you don't constantly combine them with the sugary stuff that I'm piling on my nut butter as I type (and I wonder why my keyboard is always so sticky). Keep them in your diet playbook and you can't go wrong. 

Now for a little PB&J eating music (with a baseball bat?):

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