Let’s have a look at the six, most nutritious seeds you must include in your diet.
Hemp seeds are an excellent source of protein. Did you know that just 2 tablespoons of hemp seeds (i.e. around 20 grams) can provide as much as 6 - 7 grams of protein? Not only that, but the protein quality is one of the best amongst plant-based sources. Hemp seeds provide all essential amino acids, which make them a complete source of protein, almost as effective as beef or lamb. Hemp protein powder can be a good plant-based alternative for people who want to build muscles.
These are great for your gut health too because of the soluble and insoluble fiber. In fact, hemp seed pills are used for constipation relief.
You will also get a fair amount of iron, magnesium, and potassium. Magnesium plays a very important role in our bodies. It is essential for healthy nerve function, heartbeat, and muscles. It also keeps your bones healthy because cells use magnesium to send calcium across cell walls. Another study suggests that hemp seeds carry anti-cancer properties and they can be used for controlling the disease.
Hemp seed oil deserves its own mention. It provides the omega-3 fatty acid, which is great for cardiovascular health. It is also good for your skin health. The oil can change the plasma fatty acid profile that will improve the symptoms of dermatitis.
Nigella seed or black seeds are known for antioxidant and healing properties, thanks to the compounds like t-anethole, thymoquinone, or carvacrol give it some healing powers.
Nigella seeds and its active principles like TQ and alpha-hederin provide remarkable pharmacological activity against many different diseases. Research has shown that Nigella seeds can be effective against some cancers including skin, colon, prostate, colon, or lung cancer.
People with rheumatoid arthritis can reduce markers of inflammation and stress by consuming 1.000 mg of Nigella seeds. Another study found that Nigella seeds were as effective as the antibiotic when applied topically to infants with staphylococcal skin infections.
Eating Nigella seeds can also lower the risk of heart disease because of the good fatty acids. It will help regulate and lower bad cholesterol levels and triglycerides. High triglycerides levels can increase the risk of heart disease.
You must have heard of the benefits of detoxification. An interesting study found that Nigella seeds can reduce the toxicity of chemicals and the damage it causes to liver and kidney in rats.
Nigella seeds are a good source of vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, and proteins.
The edible part of pomegranate is actually the seeds covered with juicy red fruit. These are probably the tastiest and the most nutritious of all.
Pomegranate is good for blood and heart health. It lowers blood pressure naturally in hypertensive people. It will also reduce the plaque in arteries and LDL oxidation that can lead to heart problems.
Another interesting study found that pomegranates can improve testosterone levels, mood, and memory. Maintaining appropriate levels of testosterone in the body will help regulate sex drive and improve bone and muscle strength in men.
It can also help you fight bacterial infections because it helps your body produce the healthy, probiotic bacteria.
Poppy seeds are used as a sleeping aid in many parts of the world. Consuming poppy seeds with milk or tea will help you relax. Research has shown that cortisol levels drop after consuming poppy seeds and it produces an incredibly calming effect. It also has a muscle relaxant in the form of papaverine. So, a bedtime routine of poppy seeds with milk can help you recover from the daily stress and tiredness.
Poppy seeds provide essential minerals including magnesium, calcium, iron, zinc, and phosphorus. All these are important for strong bones, teeth, skin, and nerve function.
Poppy seed oil has been used in an age-old fertility technique. And now, science confirms that flushing fallopian tubes with poppy seed oil can improve chances of conceiving for women. A huge study in Australia confirmed that almost 40% of infertile women who went through this procedure conceived within six months.
Sesame seeds, like most seeds in our list, are high in magnesium and calcium. These are also a good source of fatty acids and fiber.
Sesame seeds have an incredibly high ratio of lignans content. Dietary lignan can be very healthy because of the anti-oxidant, anti-estrogenic and pro-apoptotic qualities. The phytosterols in sesame seeds are known to have cancer preventative properties.
Athletes who ate about 40 grams of sesame seed powder on a daily basis had reduced muscle damage and increased aerobic capacity. So, it’s a great addition to your diet if you are looking to start an aerobic activity like running because of its many benefits.
Another study found Sesame seeds can lower the levels of inflammatory chemicals in the blood. So, it’s a good food for people with problems like knee osteoarthritis.
Flaxseeds come packed with fiber, fatty acids, and various minerals. You already know how fiber can help your digestive system. Other than the fiber, flaxseed oil can also help with bowel movement and stool consistency. A study found that it can be as effective as olive oil. So, flax seeds will help you maintain a healthy gut which is the first line of defense against many health conditions.
Flax seeds can be an excellent source of protein. In a small study, people who were given this plant-based protein felt no difference in terms of appetite or satiety, when compared to animal protein.
Research has shown that flax seeds can lower the risk of heart disease. Essential fatty acids like Omega-3 can help lower LDL cholesterol levels in people with artery disease. It will also help lower the blood pressure. The benefit increases when these are consumed as a whole seed for more than 12 weeks.
The seeds also provide disease preventive benefits for other health problems.
Most of these seeds can be eaten raw or prepared in different dishes. And these are not the only ones. If you are looking for a healthy plant-based source of protein, fats, fiber, and minerals, you need to look no further than these seeds.