When you think of a healthy diet, one small thing often gets overlooked – seeds. Healthy seeds are packed with nutritional benefits including high levels of protein, antioxidants, healthy fats, minerals, and fiber. Plus, seeds are usually low in calories and you can easily fit them into your diet by combining them with cereals, baking them into bread or crackers, or adding to salads and stews.
When you want to make your diet healthier and have more energy and better well-being, consider these important seeds. They may be small but they pack a powerful punch when it comes to targeted nutrition.
Different Healthy Seeds for You
1) Sunflower Seeds for Vitamin E
Sunflower seeds are very high in the essential vitamin, vitamin E. This is a crucial vitamin for better skin, hair, and overall bone health. Plus, sunflower seeds are packed with antioxidants which makes them a good choice for lowering inflammation and helping protect against disease. You can snack on sunflower seeds or you could make them into a healthy seeds butter, which is less fatty than almond butter or peanut butter and is ideal if you suffer from a nut allergy.
2) Hemp Seeds: Superfood
These minute seeds are very important when it comes to improving your overall health and wellbeing, and to help protect against heart disease and chronic illnesses. They contain fiber, protein, omega-3 fatty acids and omega-6 fatty acids, plus other important minerals. Hemp seeds actually contain the complete set of 20 amino acids which are vital for health – and they are a vegetarian source. You can even use hemp seeds to help build muscle mass after a long workout.
3) Get Healthy With Chia Seeds
Chia seeds may look insubstantial but they are actually really healthy. You can use them practically, too, to add bulk and thickness to soups and smoothies. They contain fiber so you can improve baked goods by adding them to the mix, and they also have protein and omega-3 fatty acids for good general health.
4) Sesame Seeds: Great All-Rounders
Sesame seeds are an ideal seed for adding to salads, cereals, baked goods, and even soups. Sesame seeds contain lots of zinc and protein, plenty of iron, magnesium, and other vitamins. The seeds contain the important nutrients sesamin and sesamolin – these are lignans and can lower your cholesterol. They can assist in the regulation of blood pressure and they are also said to help promote better digestion, and help prevent diabetes, arthritis, cancer, and other chronic conditions. They may even help reduce levels of stress and anxiety – a superfood seed!#
5) Pumpkin Seeds for Iron and Zinc
Don’t discard the seeds you get from the pumpkin, eat them for a boost of iron and zinc, which makes them ideal for vegetarians. They also contain manganese, protein, phosphorous, and omega-3 fatty acids. Add pumpkin seeds to salads for an extra crunchy layer and you can also just snack on them – they taste great toasted.
6) Eat Flaxseeds for Antioxidants
Add flaxseeds to a healthy smoothie for a health boost – they contain high levels of antioxidants to help your immune system and your general wellbeing. They are full of fiber, too, which makes them ideal for a breakfast cereal or drink. Remember to always eat flaxseeds in ground form – the whole seeds will not stick around in your body long enough to give any nutritional effect. You can keep ground flaxseeds in the fridge to stock the oils going bad.
7) Get Cumin Seeds for a Flavor Boost
Cumin seeds are great for flavoring dishes but they are also great from a nutritional perspective, and contain good levels of iron. Cumin is also useful for helping digestion, and have been said to protect against colds and flu, help detoxify the body, and promote better absorption of nutrients into the body.
8) Fennel Seeds to Reduce Cancer Risk
Antioxidants in fennel seeds help to reduce the risk of cancer as well as other chronic conditions. Fennel seeds also contain calcium, iron, fiber, and other nutrients. They are said to help ease the pain of arthritis.
9) Wheat Germ: Powerhouse
The germ of the wheat is where the seed is going to grow, and as such it is full of nutritional benefit. Wheat germ has all kinds of goodness, from B vitamins to protein, iron to fiber. You can add wheat germ to all kinds of dishes including cereals, smoothies, soups, and yogurt. It makes a healthy addition to many meals, and it has very few calories.
10) Health Benefits of Pomegranate Seeds
Pomegranate seeds may not be the most common seeds but they do contain good levels of iron as well as potassium, vitamin K, and antioxidants. These healthy seeds are a valuable addition to a balanced diet.