9 Seeds You Should Be Eating

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9 Seeds You Should Be Eating
9 Seeds You Should Be Eating. Graphic © herbshealthhappiness.com. Image sources: See foot of page.

Seeds are super healthy food that should be regarded as an important addition to your diet plan. Rich in protein, fiber, B vitamins and many other minerals and antioxidants, seeds make a satisfying snack for both children and adults. They also contain monosaturated fats, which are the same fats found in olive oil and are heart-friendly.

Here is a list of 9 of the best seeds that you can include in your next meal:

1. Chia

These seeds have become one of the most popular superfoods in the health community. They boast of health benefits that are supported by human studies. Full of nutrients, chia seeds are also a rich source of dietary fiber, vitamins, and healthy fats. Several studies [1][2] demonstrated the benefits of chia on human health.

2. Almonds

Many consider almonds to be nuts, but they are technically the seeds from the fruits of the almond tree. You can purchase both sweet and bitter almonds. The former are edible while the latter are used to make almond oil. Almonds are considered beneficial for controlling cholesterol level. This has been demonstrated by a study that showed the positive effect of daily consumption of almonds on cardiometabolic risk factors. [3]

3. Flaxseeds

Flaxseeds have rich content of beneficial alpha-linolenic acid, fiber, and lignans. They also contain B vitamins, copper, zinc, selenium, and phytochemicals. High fiber is good for suppressing appetite [4] and for healthy bowel functioning. Flaxseeds are also good for maintaining healthy skin and hair. [5]

4. Pumpkin Seeds

Sun-dried pumpkin seeds are eaten as a healthy snack. You can also sprinkle the seeds on soups, salads, cereals, and yogurt. Regular consumption of these seeds is good for lowering bad cholesterol, [6] supporting healthy blood sugar levels and reducing arthritis pain. Pumpkin seeds are also beneficial to your eyes, hair, [7] and skin.

5. Sesame Seeds

These seeds are highly valued for their oil, which has been popularly used for adding to many dishes. The seeds contain calcium, magnesium, iron, phosphorous, and vitamins. Sesame seeds go well in bread and other baked products and are also added to soups and salads. Studies have suggested that they can lower blood pressure [8] and cholesterol and prevent asthma, arthritis, [9] and certain cancers.

6. Hemp Seeds

Hemp seeds are edible and are used in salads, shakes, smoothies, and baked goods. These super seeds have a very good amino acid balance for the human body and contain phytosterols which are plant-based compounds that help lower cholesterol [10] levels. Hemp belongs to the cannabis family, but it does not have THC which is marijuana’s active ingredient.

7. Sunflower Seeds

These seeds are a good source of healthy fats, fiber, magnesium, B vitamins, iron, calcium, and folate. They also contain vitamin E which is a fat-soluble antioxidant. Studies have reported that regular consumption of sunflower seeds can help reduce arthritis [11] and lower high blood pressure.

8. Wild Rice Seeds

Wild rice is actually a grass seed, unrelated to Asian rice, that is higher in protein than most other whole grains. These seeds also contain thirty more antioxidants than white rice. They are not only a good source of fiber and but are also rich in nutrients such as folate, manganese, zinc, vitamin, and niacin. One study showed the effectiveness of wild rice [12] in lowering cholesterol.

9. Pomegranate Seeds

These seeds have lots of fiber and can provide almost half of your daily requirement of vitamin C. They also contain heart-healthy antioxidants including flavonoids, tannins, and anthocyanins. According to a 2011 study [13] published in the journal Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice, regular consumption of pomegranate juice may reduce high blood pressure.

See also:

Amazing Health Benefits Of Seeds And Nuts


[1] Jin F. 2012. Plant Foods for Human Nutrition. Supplementation of milled chia seeds increases plasma ALA and EPA in postmenopausal women. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22538527/

[2] Guevara-Cruz M et al. 2012. The Journal of Nutrition. A dietary pattern including nopal, chia seed, soy protein, and oat reduces serum triglycerides and glucose intolerance in patients with metabolic syndrome. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22090467/

[3] Berryman CE et al. 2015. Journal of the American Heart Association. Effects of Daily Almond Consumption on Cardiometabolic Risk and Abdominal Adiposity in Healthy Adults With Elevated LDL-Cholesterol: A Randomized Controlled Trial. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4330049/

[4] Roberta Soares Lara Cassani. 2015. Nutrition Journal. Impact of weight loss diet associated with flaxseed on inflammatory markers in men with cardiovascular risk factors: a clinical study. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4326402/

[5] Zuzanna Sabina Goluch-Koniuszy. 2016. Nutrition of women with hair loss problem during the period of menopause. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4828511/

[6] Emilio Ros and Frank B. Hu. 2013. Circulation. Consumption of Plant Seeds and Cardiovascular Health: Epidemiologic and Clinical Trial Evidence. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3745769/

[7] Cho YH et al. 2014. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Effect of Pumpkin Seed Oil on Hair Growth in Men with Androgenetic Alopecia: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4017725/

[8] Sankar D et al. 2006. Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine. Effect of Sesame Oil on Diuretics or ß-blockers in the Modulation of Blood Pressure, Anthropometry, Lipid Profile, and Redox Status. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1942178/

[9] Sotnikova R et al. 2009. Neuro Endocrinology Letters. Effects of sesame oil in the model of adjuvant arthritis. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20027138

[10] Delfin Rodriguez-Leyva and Grant N Pierce. 2010. Nutrition and Metabolism. The cardiac and haemostatic effects of dietary hempseed. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2868018/

[11] Reed GW et al. 2014. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis with Marine and Botanical Oils: An 18-Month, Randomized, and Double-Blind Trial. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3977504/

[12] Zhang H et al. 2013. Journal of Hygiene Research. Effects of Chinese wild rice on lipid metabolism and lipotoxicity in rats fed with high fat/cholesterol diet. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23654092

[13] Stowe CB et al. 2011. The effects of pomegranate juice consumption on blood pressure and cardiovascular health. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21457902

Infographic Image Sources:

https://pixabay.com/en/chia-chia-seeds-food-nutrition-1798600/ (PD)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Mandorle_sgusciate.jpg (lic. under Creative Commons)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Brown_Flax_Seeds.jpg (lic. under Creative Commons)

https://pixabay.com/photos/pumpkin-seeds-seed-vegetable-1323854/ (PD)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Sesame-Seeds.jpg (lic. under Creative Commons)

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Hempseeds.jpg (lic. under Creative Commons)

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Sunflower_seeds.JPG (lic. under Creative Commons)

https://fotolia.com/id/153340839 (under license)

https://pixabay.com/photos/pomegranate-seeds-kernels-red-food-2895516/ (PD)

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