Consuming peanuts or peanut butter may contribute to the production of metabolites involved in cognition and stress response

In a recent study published in the Journal of Functional Foods, researchers set out to assess the impact of peanut consumption on the gut–brain axis. Specifically, this randomized controlled trial aimed to evaluate the association of urinary microbial phenolic metabolites (MPMs) related to peanut intake with memory function and stress response.

A total of 63 healthy young adults completed the intervention. Participants consumed 25 g of skin-roasted peanuts, 32 g of peanut butter or 32 g of a control butter daily for six months. Cognition and mood were assessed using validated tests. Urinary cortisol was quantified by an enzymatic method and urinary MPMs were analyzed using a novel method based on liquid chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry.

Lignans and hydroxybenzoic acids with significantly higher post-intervention levels were correlated with improved cognition and mood in peanut product consumers. These findings suggest that peanut and peanut butter consumption may contribute to the synthesis of MPMs involved in the improvement of memory and mood outcomes.

Parilli-Moser, I., López-Solís, R., Domínguez-López, I., Vallverdú-Queralt, A., Hurtado-Barroso, S., Lamuela-Raventós, R.M. (2023). Consumption of peanut products enhances the production of microbial phenolic metabolites related with memory and stress response: Results from the ARISTOTLE trial. Journal of Functional Foods, 108, 105746.

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