The Healing Properties of a Peanut Butter Sandwich

I would like to know if the healing properties of peanut butter—in particular, a peanut butter and jelly sandwich have been studied, researched and reported on. If not, I would like to propose a research project—I know that chicken soup has been studied, and red wine and dark chocolate. But what about the lowly peanut butter and jelly sandwich? Doesn’t it deserve a place on the roster of beneficial food; shouldn’t the healthful properties of pb & j be investigated? And while we’re at it, how about settling the cutting it crossways or diagonal controversy once and for all…

My daughter, who is a junior in high school, has had a rough day. It is the last few days before holiday/winter break and gone are the parties and “fun days” of the younger grades. Instead, she’s had finals and reports and projects to do all week. It hasn’t helped that she’s been living on a diet of white sugar and chocolate and trying to squeeze in as much socializing as possible. She dumps her books and bags all over the dining room and heads for the kitchen.

“All I’ve been thinking about all day is coming home and having a peanut butter and jelly sandwich!” She’s slathering creamy peanut butter (she prefers creamy, the rest of us go in for super chunky) and scooping out some of the homemade grape jelly her grandmother brought only days before. It gets me to thinking…

My busiest days are peanut butter days. I never think to turn to the trusty sandwich when I’m relaxed and have time to savor—those are days for lunches out, or three-course meals around the dinner table. But on those busy, hectic days when I realize I haven’t eaten and it’s already 7 pm—or when I know I’ll be bound to my desk all day, it’s the trusty peanut butter sandwich that keeps me going and my blood sugar reasonably level. I see I’ve passed that on to my kids.

Peanut butter is comfort food, eat it when there’s nothing else food, grab something on the way to the game food, and take it on a picnic or to feed the ducks food. How could there not be healing and life sustaining properties in a food like that?

“Oh, just grab a peanut butter sandwich and let’s get going—you can eat it in the car!”

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