Peanuts, also known by their scientific name Arachis hypogaea, are a legume crop grown mainly for their edible seeds. Despite commonly being referred to as nuts, peanuts actually belong to the legume family, similar to beans and lentils. They are native to South America but are now cultivated in many countries around the world, with China, India, and the United States being among the largest producers.Peanuts grow in a fascinating manner. Unlike most plants, after the peanut flowers are pollinated, their stalks elongate and bend towards the ground, burying the fertilized ovules, which then develop into peanut pods underground. This unique growth process is known as geocarpy, making peanuts essentially groundnuts.

Nutritionally, peanuts are a rich source of energy, providing a high content of fats, primarily monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which are considered heart-healthy fats. They are also a good source of protein, dietary fiber, and various vitamins and minerals, including vitamin E, magnesium, and phosphorus. Peanuts can be consumed in various forms, including raw, roasted, boiled, and as peanut butter, making them a versatile ingredient in both savory and sweet dishes around the world.However, it’s important to note that peanuts are a common allergen. Peanut allergy is one of the most serious food allergies, capable of causing severe allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis. Therefore, individuals with peanut allergies must avoid peanuts and peanut-containing products.

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