Amid all the processed urban diets, seeds have taken a backseat. These, tiny but big, storehouses of plenty of vital nutrients give a boost to immunity and prevent numerous diseases. When we are talking about seeds here, we are particularly referring to oil seeds like sunflower, pumpkin, water-melon, flax, muskmelon seeds, chia seeds etc. Besides boosting immunity and preventing diseases, they lower bad cholesterol levels. Seeds are excellent sources of good unsaturated fats and are low in starch and carbohydrates. The seeds have very low glycemic index and are high in fiber, which keeps us feel full for longer time periods.
These tiny storehouses are great sources of micronutrients like vitamin B1, B12 and minerals like zinc, calcium, magnesium, calcium potassium and iron. This makes them better than snacks like breads, chips, rusks, and biscuits. For most of the people, kids especially seeds are pretty boring to eat. However they can be coupled healthy sandwiches, salads, sprouts and rolls.
These are some commonly eaten seeds, which beget amazing heath benefits:
- Flax seeds: These seeds owe their benefits to greater levels of alpha linolenic acids which is an essential fatty acid. This fatty acid is a precursor to omega-3. Flax seeds are vital for normal growth and development of the body. Also they play a very important role in the treatment of heart-diseases, high blood pressure, diabetes, auto-immune diseases and cancer. These seeds are excellent resources of vitamin B complex, E, and fiber. These seeds are important in treating menopausal disorders, hot flashes and brittle bones. You can include them to your diet daily by adding them to cereals, water or curd. Make sure that you are eating ground seeds and not the whole seeds. Whole seeds are not much beneficial.
- Alfalfa seeds: These seeds are extremely helpful in treating liver disease, detoxification of blood, anemia, ulcers, arthritis and fluid retention. Furthermore these seeds reduce blood cholesterol levels and blood sugar levels. Alfalfa seeds are best consumed as sprouts because they contain toxic amino acids and taking them without sprouting can impair blood platelets. Pregnant women and anyone taking any health treatment should consult their doctors before use.
- Muskmelon seeds: Also known as Cucumis melo and is commonly referred to as cantaloupe. Muskmelon seeds are great source of beta-carotene, which helps us improving vision. The presence of Vitamin A and vitamin C both of them acts as anti-oxidants which protects body tissues against oxidative damage from free radicals. Muskmelon seeds must be taken by both active and passive smokers because they contain vitamin A, which helps in protecting lungs.
- Watermelon seeds: Not many people are aware of health benefits associated with water-melon seeds. However, these seeds have everything ranging from proteins, vitamins, minerals and fats. Proteins contains several amino acids; one of which is present in watermelon is Arginine. This amino acid helps in regulating blood pressure and treating coronary artery disease. The most important vitamin present in these seeds is Niacin, which maintains nervous system, digestive system and skin health very well. Various minerals present in watermelon seeds are zinc, copper, iron, phosphorus, sodium and potassium. The presence of omega-6 fatty acids reduces blood cholesterol levels.
Apart from seeds, nuts form a healthy part of our nutritive diet too. Appropriate intake of nuts and seeds everyday help you reach your required protein diet. They play a key role in preventing various diseases and disorders. Regular intake of these will surely decrease your to medical appointments with your doctor.