Most people have heard of or eaten sesame or sunflower seeds, but fewer are aware of lesser-known seeds that actually have huge health benefits. If you’re looking for a simple step towards a healthier lifestyle, try adding these seeds into your diet. Just remember: seeds are best eaten raw as they lose nutritional value when exposed to heat.
1. Chia Seeds
Chia seeds are a great source of fiber, protein and antioxidants. Chia seeds are also the richest plant source of omega-3 fatty acids. Ingesting the seeds could help reduce joint pain, aid in weight loss, deliver an energy boost and protect against serious conditions such as diabetes and heart disease.
2. Hemp Seeds
Hemp seeds contain all 20 amino acids our body cannot produce and could aid those suffering from immune deficiency diseases. This seed also lowers blood pressure while improving organ function, immunity levels, cardiovascular circulation and function, and recovery of muscles after exercise.
3. Pomegranate Seeds
Pomegranates are a rich source of antioxidants, which helps protect your body’s cells from free radicals (which cause disease and premature aging). The seeds eventually help blood flow freely through your body, which improves the oxygen levels in your blood. Pomegranates also protect cardiovascular health, fight cancer, improve bone quality, boost digestive condition, increase appetite, reduce inflammation and help lose weight.
4. Flax Seeds
Flax seeds have been linked to a reduced cancer risk. This seed also promotes healthy bowel functions and lowers blood cholesterol levels, which decreases the risk of heart attack and stroke. Ground flax seeds actually provide more nutritional benefits than whole seeds. Try grinding the seeds with a coffee grinder and adding to your cereal, baked goods (great substitute for breading) and smoothies to take advantage of all the benefits this seed holds.
5. Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin seeds are the only seed that is alkaline-forming. They are also very high in protein, provide a great source of vitamin B, can help reduce depression, aid in kidney stone prevention, and can even fight parasites.
6. Sesame Seeds
Sesame seeds are a great source of protein, help prevent diabetes, reduce blood pressure, lower cholesterol, aid digestion, improve skin, boost heart health, prevent cancer, AND help lessen anxiety.
7. Sunflower Seeds
Sunflower seeds are a fantastic source of vitamin E. They are also believed to reduce blood levels of cholesterol, enhance the immune response and decrease the risk of certain cancers. Sunflower seeds are also a great source of magnesium. Magnesium has been able to help reduce the severity of asthma, lower blood pressure, prevent migraine headaches and reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke.
8. Cumin Seeds
Cumin seeds are useful for digestive disorders and also can be used as an antiseptic. The seeds are rich in iron and help boost the power of the liver. Cumin seeds even have been known to relieve symptoms of the common cold. Next time you have a sore throat, try adding dry ginger to cumin water. This concoction will help soothe your throat.
9. Grape Seeds
The proanthocyanidins in grape seeds help to improve blood circulation and cardiovascular health. They can help with weight management and are a natural antidepressant.