Groundnut may cure diabetes, eye disease By Chukwuman Muanya
New researches suggest that eating a handful of groundnuts daily will not only prevent malnutrition, particularly the deficiency of niacin, but also check the development of diabetes, heart disease and age-related blindness.
THEY are in season. They are usually eaten boiled, roasted, put into a paste or oil. They are probably the most common snack in the country now.Groundnut or rather peanut is sold not just in the markets, but on the streets in most cities and even villages in Nigeria.Scientifically called Arachis hypogaea, the legume belongs to the pea and bean family, but it is considered as nut because of its high nutritional value.
However, two new studies suggest that a meal of groundnut may be a better way of preventing degenerative diseases such as diabetes, heart disease and age-related blindness.Researchers have found that a naturally occurring chemical, resveratrol, found in groundnut (peanut), red wine, grapes and other plants may help reverse some of the ills associated with aging and being overweight such as diabetes and cardiovascular diseases.The findings are reported in the July issue of the American Journal of Pathology.What makes groundnut thick?
Analysis of different nutrients in 100 grammes groundnut shows it contains 26 essential minerals and 13 different types of vitamins that include Vitamins A, B, C and E, which help in brain function and development and also to maintain strong bones.Phytochemical analysis per 100 gramme of groundnut indicates calcium – 93 milligramme (mg), carbohydrate – 16.13 gramme (gm), copper – 11.44 mg, fat – 49.24 gm, fibre – 8.5 gm, iron – 4.58 mg, magnesium – 168 mg, manganese – 1.934 mg, phosphorus – 376 mg, potassium – 705 mg, – 25.80 gm, sodium – 18 mg, water – 6.50 gm, and zinc – 3.27 mg.The chemical, resveratrol, has been shown to lengthen the life span of yeast and improve health in laboratory animals, but scientists do not yet know whether the substance might also benefit humans.The two new studies of older or overweight people suggest that resveratrol can, by helping boost the action of insulin, thus preventing diabetes.