Health Benefits of Sunflower Seeds: Why Should You Eat Sunflower Seeds?
Sunflower seeds are the gift for our health. These are grayish-green or black colour seeds which are the produce of the beautiful sunflower. Sunflower seeds are excellent food for their nutritional values and often regard as the healthiest snacks that you can ever have. We know the importance of the nuts and seeds in our diet. The sunflower seeds are just the part of that diet. Sunflower seeds are excellent source of polyunsaturated oil and that makes them a great food for the heart. But besides this sunflower seeds are great sources of other valuable nutrients too. So let’s check out the nutritional profile of the sunflower seeds.
Nutritional Profile of Sunflower Seeds
Almost 90% of the fat in sunflower seeds is good, unsaturated fat. Sunflower seeds also contain monosaturated fats which help to lower total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol (the bad cholesterol) while increasing HDL cholesterol (the good cholesterol) levels. In addition, sunflower seeds contain Vitamin E and Vitamin B 1 (Thiamin). Manganese, magnesium, copper, selenium, phosphorus, Vitamin B 3 (Niacin), Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic) and folate can also be found in good amount in sunflower seeds.
Health Benefits of Sunflower Seeds
Sunflower seeds are so rich in valuable nutrients, it is no wonder that these seeds have big positive impact on our health.
• Sunflower seeds are excellent source of Vitamin E. As we know Vitamin E is an antioxidant and plays a major role for our well being. Vitamin E fights the free radicals and saves the cells from the damage including the brain cells. Vitamin E prevents heart disease. Antioxidants in Vitamin E fight free radicals and prevent them from oxidizing cholesterol. This keeps the cardiovascular condition healthy and lowers the risk of heart attack, stroke and blocked arteries.
The anti-inflammatory effects of Vitamin E reduce the chances of asthma, osteoarthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis. Also Vitamin E reduces the risk of any diseases or conditions related to inflammation. Besides these Vitamin E is also helpful in reducing the risk of Colon cancer.
• Selenium is a trace mineral which plays an important role on overall health. It helps to repair the DNA, reduces the cancer cell development. Selenium works with Vitamin E and helps to prevent heart diseases as well. Sunflower seeds are rich in selenium and this is the another reason why sunflower seeds are so good for our health.
• Sunflower seeds also contain good amount of magnesium. Magnesium helps to prevent asthma, lower high blood pressure, and prevent migraine headaches. It blocks calcium to enter into the nerve cells and blood vessels. By blocking calcium, it prevents the muscle spasms and sudden nerve contractions.
• Sunflower seeds contain significant amount of folate. Folate is an important nutrient for our health. It’s a B Vitamin plays an important role in the production of new body cells by helping to form the DNA and RNA. Folate and Vitamin B 12 help to form haemoglobin in red blood cells. Folate is also helpful in lower the risk of heart disease. Sunflower seeds also contain Zinc which is beneficial for keeping our immune system strong.
• Dietary fiber in sunflower seeds controls cholesterol levels and blood glucose levels and also promotes good digestion. Sunflower seeds contain Tryptophan – an amino acid that helps to produce serotonin.
Sunflower seeds are excellent for our health and should be included in our diet regime. But just like any other foods, moderation is the key.