For many years, people thought they should avoid fats to be healthy. But the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics says eating the right kinds of fat is good for you, and may even be good for your heart.

Nut butters can be a healthy way to get some of these fats. But with so many different types, how do you choose? Each offers different benefits, so try  eating a variety.

  • Peanut butter: This popular nut butter contains plenty of monounsaturated fat, which has been shown to help lower bad cholesterol. This can reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke.
  • Almond butter: Almonds are an excellent source of vitamin E, which is an important nutrient for your heart and immune system, according to the National Institutes of Health. It also contains an even higher amount of monounsaturated fat than peanut butter.
  • Walnut butter: Although this can be harder to find, some health food stores carry walnut butter. It contains a high amount of polyphenols, which help reduce the risk of heart disease. It also contains omega-3 fats, which reduce inflammation in the body. This is especially good for people with diseases like Crohn’s disease, multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis.

Although nut butters are healthy, they are high in calories. Be careful about portion sizes and avoid eating too much. Choose nut butters that have no added sugar or salt listed in the ingredients.

Source: American Heart Association; USDA National Nutrient Database

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