Weight Loss Support - Peanut butter becoming a problem! Help needed!

Tara D
11-07-2006, 01:01 PM
I'm hoping by writing this here that I will have a greater incentive to break this growing problem. For lunch usually have a peanut butter and jelly sandwich with a sliced banana on the sandwich and the leftover banana on the side. Over the last few weeks, I developed a habit of eating out of the peanut butter jar after I finish my sandwich. It started out with just a tiny bit, but now I am estimating that I am eating a tablespoon or more each day after I finish my lunch. I don't measure it out because I always intend to just take a tiny bit, so it's possible that it might even be more than a tablespoon! I'm usually full after my lunch, so it's not that I'm hungry and need more food.

Any advice on how to break this habit?? I'm starting by stating here, on a public forum, that I am making a committment to quitting this habit!!!

11-07-2006, 01:13 PM
Are you eating enough? Peanut butter is an excellent source of energy, it's high in calories, fat and has protein. I only ever found myself craving peanut butter when I wasn't getting enough to eat, the body knew what it needed and peanut butter fit the ticket perfectly.

If you are eating enough, maybe peanut butter is just one of your trigger foods. For example, I don't keep ice cream in the house, I can't be trusted to spoon out a 1/2 cup portion and stop. You could try buying peanut butter in those little single serving tubs you find in restaurants and limiting yourself to only one per meal. Or, you could make your own individual servings in advance and only grab one per meal. Or you could make your sandwich and then close the jar of peanut butter and put it someplace out of line of sight (top of closed cabinet) and then take your sandwich to another room and eat it.

Peanut butter is a GREAT food (I eat it every morning and never measure it, heh) but it can sabotage weight loss if you eat too much of it. Worst case, throw out the jar and find a new favorite sandwich for awhile. Maybe tuna on whole wheat with tomato?

11-07-2006, 01:17 PM
That's what I would do, I would get rid of the jar for awhile until I could keep it in check. If that's a trigger for you it might be the best bet. I just switched up my lunch menu a bit. A 3 0z can of tuna in water, with 2 skinny multi-grain rice cakes, a sliced red pepper and a sliced cucumber and 5 almonds. It's pretty decent and surprisingly filling.

11-07-2006, 01:27 PM
Are you closing up the jar and putting it away as soon as you finish your sandwich? That usually keeps me from continuing to nibble on the jar.

I too can eat peanut butter straight out of the jar. If I didn't force myself to put the jar away, I'm pretty sure I could eat the whole thing in one sitting. It's a very dangerous food. :devil:

Peanut butter is really high in fat, even if some of it good fat (not all of it is, there's also saturated fat in peanut butter), so it probably wouldn't be a bad idea for you to eat something else for lunch once in a while. I was eating PB&J for lunch every day (it was easy and I absolutely crave peanut butter, I think because I otherwise eat such a low fat diet) and my trainer convinced me to stop doing this. Now Sundays are my PB&J days and the rest of the week I eat something else.

11-07-2006, 01:28 PM
Sounds yummy, "Fed" up! :) I think I may have to have something similar for dinner tonight.

11-07-2006, 01:32 PM
Tara, peanut butter is a trigger food for me. I love it and will over-eat on it. I was having a problem with it, so stopped buying it for a week. I found that I liked it so much that I'd skip regular meals to just eat the peanut butter from a spoon. I didn't measure, so I know my spoonful getting bigger and bigger. I did notice if I had it for breakfast, that I was more prone to want sweets that day. It doesn't seem to be calling me quite as bad now as it was. I keep it up high in a cabinet now, so I don't see it often. (I had mentioned a problem with this about a month ago in maintainers forum). Even my DD had mentioned how quickly the PB was disappearing.

11-07-2006, 01:34 PM
It sounds like you may not be getting enough protein. Peanut butter can be addictive but if you look at the breakdown of your lunch you get the following:

- 2 slices of bread (I'm assuming) - carb rich
- Jelly - carb rich
- Banana - carb rich
- Peanut butter - protein and fat

Maybe try to add some cottage cheese on the side instead of your banana?

11-07-2006, 01:41 PM
Do you think it might help to actually measure out the full amount that you're "allowing" yourself to eat for lunch. Then, use half of it on the sandwich, and leave the rest on the knife/spoon. Then, close the lid up tight and put it away on a high shelf. Eat your sandwich like usual, then eat the PB that's on the knife/spoon and then go put the knife/spoon in the sink and pour dishsoap over it. That way you're not as tempted to get "just one more spoonful" or whatever.

I dunno. I'd try something like that first. And if that becomes too "dangerous" I'd throw out the PB and switch to something else for lunch.

11-07-2006, 02:04 PM
A little warning on peanut butter... please consider switching over to a natural peanut butter because regular brands have the bad transfats in them. The transfats are used to keep the oil from separating. Yeah imagine what that does to your insides!

11-07-2006, 03:10 PM
If I were starting to binge, I would get rid of it.

11-07-2006, 03:34 PM
Peanut butter is good food, and I love it on a sandwich or a banana. I used to have peanut butter every day, at least once a day (Jif, regular or white label). I was kind of surprised recently, looking over my food records, that I'm down to about twice a week now.

I get the fresh ground peanuts at the coop market. You pour peanuts into the grinder, and they come out as peanut butter into the container, just peanuts - nothing else. It has a little different texture than grocery store peanut butter, but I've come to like it better, and it seems more filling. It doesn't separate and form a layer of oil in the several weeks it takes for me to finish off a small container. Plus, it has no trans fats.

I've found that without any added sugars (especially that darn high fructose corn syrup), that my craving for peanut butter has gone way down, and it doesn't seem to spike my appetite the way some sweet things do. Now regular and even low cal peanut butter taste too sweet to me. I found that my organic whole wheat bread had high fructose corn syrup in it, too! So, I started getting a less sweet bread, which decreased my cravings even more.


Tara D
11-07-2006, 04:10 PM
Sojourner and Rainy...I've been using natural peanut butter for a few months now...It may actually be part of the problem, I like it much better than my old Jif! I've had an untouched jar of Jif in the cabinet for 5 months, and there's no way I'll eat it instead of my Smucker's natural PB. I also use all natural whole wheat bread.

I usually use 1-1.25 tablespoons for my sandwich (I measure this), but anything that comes after...well, I estimate it. A mistake!

Cottage cheese is out...can't stand it, and can't do a significant quantity of dairy frequently (digestive issues)!

I'm also on a pretty tight budget ($20 a week or less), and the PB&J fits well into my budget. I like it a lot, too. It also helps me get healthy fats, as my fat intake would be less than 10 grams/day without it. Because of these reasons, I'd like to keep it around (at least until the day I get sick of it)! However, I need to really listen to a lot of the advice people have given to kick this habit! Hopefully coming "out of the closet" here and confessing will help, too!

Goodbye Chubby
11-07-2006, 04:16 PM
Have you ever seen "Better N' Butter"? I think that's what it's called. I've only seen it at Whole Foods, but it's peanut butter with 1/2 the calories. They have a low-sodium product as well. When I first saw that PB was around 190 calories a serving, I sadly cut it out of my diet. When I saw this stuff though, I gladly welcomed PB back into my life.

Rather than breaking the habit cold turkey, a small adjustment like this could cut down on the damage done, and maybe serve as a step to gradually changing your habits.

I'm going to Whole Foods today, and I think I'll pick up a jar. :)

11-07-2006, 04:17 PM
Tara, I love natural PB too. A few months ago, I found myself doing the same thing you're doing. I had to pull my Tablespoon and spatula back out and start measuring it again and account strictly for it in Fitday. I'll probably have to start doing that again soon. I've been eyeing it a lot lately and my eye is pretty generous when it comes to peanut butter. It's so darn good!

Tara D
11-07-2006, 04:23 PM
To Goodbye: How do they make peanut butter with only half the calories? Do they add extra stuff? What are the ingredients? Thanks.

11-07-2006, 04:42 PM
I think it is possible that your body really just needs some protein. Also protein tends to fill you up. I'm not sure if it is really a craving that is having you eat more peanut butter than you should or just desire. If it is a craving, I'd look at some other ways you can introduce more protein into your lunches.

11-07-2006, 08:50 PM
Tara, I have a horrible peanut butter addiction. I've used natural peanut butter for the last 25 years, so it's not sugar cravings, and over 50% of my calories come from protein so it sure isn't a need for more protein! For me, it's a trigger food, plain and simple. It's always in the fridge because my son and husband eat it in moderation, but I have to treat it like a drug. I get my daily measured dose :lol3: Otherwise, I'd just eat the entire jar with a spoon, then go stir up another one.

My only suggestion is measure it out, the CLOSE THE JAR and put it away! Put other stuff in front of it in the fridge.

How do they make natural peanut butter with half the calories? If a lot of the oil is taken out, it would be peanut butter briquettes.

Edited later:
Ick. I found it. Better'n Peanut Butter (http://www.betternpeanutbutter.com/product.htm)

100 calories per 2 tablespoons and only 3 grams of fat, but here are the ingredients:
Peanuts (as de-fatted peanut flour and natural peanut butter), tapioca syrup, pure water, dehydrated cane juice, rice syrup, vegetable glycerin, soy flour, salt, tapioca starch, natural flavors, paprika & annatto, calcium carbonate, lecithin, vitamins e & c (antioxidants).

I think I'll stick to my Crazy Richards. Ingredients: 100% Peanuts.


Tara D
11-07-2006, 09:06 PM
Found the website www.betternpeanutbutter.com. This is what's in the lower fat/calorie peanut butter:

"Peanuts (as de-fatted peanut flour and natural peanut butter), tapioca syrup, pure water, dehydrated cane juice, rice syrup, vegetable glycerin, soy flour, salt, tapioca starch, natural flavors, paprika & annatto, calcium carbonate, lecithin, vitamins e & c (antioxidants)."

11-08-2006, 10:48 AM
I have recently been eating the Smucker's All Natural P.B. and I like that. It is not as yummy as the regular but I can deal with it. It only has 1 gram of sugar. :D I stick to one tbs though. ;)

Beach Patrol
11-08-2006, 11:14 AM
If peanut butter is your trigger food or something you just LOVE - then perhaps you should try the Peanut Butter Diet.

It can be found through the Prevention website or information through their magazine.