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Review: Smart Balance Sweetened Peanut Butter: Opinions from expert and readers
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Smart Balance Sweetened Peanut Butter

WHAT IT IS: Smart Balance has rolled out a twist on their Omega Peanut Butter. The new Smart Balance Sweetened Peanut Butter:

• has 33 percent (1 gram) less sugar than leading brands.
• is an excellent source of omega 3s.
• is sweetened with organic agave nectar, which has a lower glycemic index than table sugar. (It doesn’t spike your blood sugar as much and is more diabetes-friendly.)

The product has about same calories, saturated fat, sodium and fiber as leading brands but more heart-healthy monounsaturated fat. We asked two readers and an expert to review it.

Smart Balance Sweetened Peanut Butter
READERS’ REVIEWS


AnnaAnna, receptionist, Penn Yan, N.Y.
Anything new takes getting used to, but it is very good. I did notice a different taste right away. I am sure it was because of the lower sugar. But I really liked it. I have been watching sugar/fat intake so this is one I will choose when shopping.

 

SusanSusan, homemaker, Rosedale, N.Y.
While the consistency of the Smart Balance peanut butter was fine, the taste was horrid. I found the peanut butter to be extremely tangy, which would not leave my mouth. I did not taste any peanut butter. My husband felt that the aftertaste was like having eaten bad fish.


EXPERT’S REVIEW


MarisaMarisa Neelon, M.S., R.D., registered dietitian, University of California Cooperative Extension, Pleasant Hill, Calif.
As someone who usually eats peanut butter made from 100-percent peanuts, I expected this product to be too sweet. I was pleasantly surprised. However, the smooth variety had a strange aftertaste and an unpleasant sticky texture. The chunky variety came closest to my usual brand in texture, but tasted a little salty.

The balance of different fats used in the product can potentially contribute to a healthy heart. The palm oil contains a significant amount of heart-healthy monounsaturated fats. The flax oil contributes beneficial omega-3s, but in a form not as efficient as in fish.

There is some controversy surrounding palm oil and agave nectar since their health effects are still debated by scientists—specifically whether palm oil negatively affects cholesterol and whether agave nectar’s high fructose level is detrimental.*

The bottom line is that no specific foods or food ingredients can lead to optimal health, and they should be evaluated within the context of a person’s total diet and lifestyle.

*See last issue’s debate on high-fructose corn syrup for more.

Last updated and/or approved: July 2009.
Original article appeared in March/April 2009 print magazine.

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Sugar in peanut butter YUCK
written by Judith carson , June 17, 2016

Im stuck with this jar of UNNATURAL Peanut butter with sugar in it. It sucks
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Smart Balance Omega PB
written by Barbara Reynolds , January 29, 2012

I thought it was extremely good and now my PB of choice.
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GREAT NEW TASTE??
written by Robert , August 18, 2010

It used to be my PB of choice. It tasted great, and was healthy for you. Then, for whatever reason, they decided to change the formula. And NOW it tastes like crap. I will never buy again, unless they switch back to the old formula.


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smart balance peanut butter
written by Dinah Wells , July 29, 2010

I really liked the old version with just peanuts, flaxseed oil (for a smooth consistency) and salt, molasses. I was really disappointed that you added evaporated cane juice to make it sweeter. I won't be buying it again either. I think you made a big mistake.
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PB W/OUT SUGAR
written by LYNDA STRECKER , April 14, 2010

I FOUND A REALLY DELICIOUS ORGANIC PB W/OUT SUGAR OR PALM OIL.I PURCHASED IT AT PUBLIX IN FL. UNFORTUNATELY, I FORGOT THE BRAND NAME. BUT,I FOUND A BRAND ON-LINE WHICH I'LL TRY.I'LL ALSO GIVE THE ONE MENTIONED ABOVE A TRY (from TRADER JOE'S) THEY ALWAYS HAVE GREAT PRODUCTS.TOO BAD FOR SMART BALANCE. THEY HAD A GOOD THING GOING B4 THE SWEETENED PRODUCT.WHY DID U TRY 2 FIX"WHAT AIN'T BROKE? NOT TOO SMART BALANCE EH?
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STOP COMPLAINING YOU STUPID PEOPLEEE
written by Good PB lover , April 14, 2010

Smart balance PB is the best thing that ever happened to the PB industry! The people that say that it tastes bad dont know what good things are in life. They are used to eating the s*** that has bad fats (trans) and lots of sugar. Ok, leave the good PB for the people who like to be healthy and fit. You fat people used to the bad stuff can go ahead and keep liking the crap PB that's sold in crappy stores.

[Editor's note: This comment has been slightly edited for content, per our guidelines: http://familydoctormag.com/comment-policy.html . Thank you for commenting.]

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Smart balance peanut butter taste
written by Paul , March 08, 2010

The "GREAT NEW TASTE" is not a smart move. The new chunky and probably the creamy has now 3 grams of sugar per serving instead of 1. They added evaporated cane juice which is sugar. Maybe they want it to taste like JiFF or Skippy. Quite frankly if I wanted that I would buy that. They lost my business I will go back to Teddy or another natural brand.
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Smart Balance "Chunky" Lover PB
written by Linny , February 10, 2010

I have been eating this PB for a few months and love it with Honeycrisp apples for lunch. I am now a little cautious because of the Palm Oil. I would not stop purchasing this brand but will try a more natural peanut butter in the future, one without Palm Oil.







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...
written by LYNDA STRECKER , February 08, 2010

I USED TO LIKE SMART BALANCE PB BUT SINCE IT HAS BEEN SWEETENED,I REALLY DON'T LIKE IT.SO SORRY THEY CHANGED IT.WILL NOT BUY IT AGAIN.
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Smart Balance Peanut Butter Taste
written by Lancer Benson , November 17, 2009

I bought this because I found out that I have high cholesterol. The first thing that I thought was that it had a fishy taste. I thought that I couldn't be the only one to think this so I googled it and found this page. Just wanted to add my 2¢ to the mix. I can't smell fish, but can definitely taste it. I won't be buying this product again, unless I see the label changed to read "Now with no fishy taste".
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