Sunflower seeds are native to North America. Native Americans actually started cultivating them up to 3,000 BC! they’ve been around for a while. The seeds migrated to Europe and then were finally brought back to North America to be sold here as seeds and as an oil. Sunflower seeds are a great snack and a perfect addition to the top of your salad to add a little crunch, along with the many more nutrients that come with it.
Sunflower seeds are extremely nutritionally dense. You wouldn’t think so because when you think sunflower seed you probably just think seed with some protein and fats maybe? well, there’s a bit more too them than that, and that’s exactly why you should start eating them more often.
Eating just 1/4th cup of these seeds provides you with…
82% of your vitamin E daily value, 70% of your copper DV, 43% of your vitamin B1 DV, 34% of your manganese DV, 34% of your selenium DV, 33% of your phosphorus DV, 28% of your Magnesium DV, 28% of your vitamin B6 Daily Value, 20% of Folate DV, and 18% of your vitamin b3 daily value.
It doesn’t end there. Sunflower seeds are also rich in healthy fats, fiber, and even more minerals and nutrients.
Sunflower Seeds Prevent Disease And Increase Quality Of Life By:
Reducing Disease Risk:
Just 1/4th cup of sunflower seeds contains 80% of your daily vitamin E needs. Vitamin E is a crucial antioxidant (vitamin) for preventing inflammation in the body. Many diseases like heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes, and even serious often untreatable neurodegenerative conditions like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease proliferate because of inflammation. Studies have found that sunflower seeds have chemo-preventative compounds. These properties stall cancer development and shut off tumor growth.
Benefiting Thyroid Function:
Approximately 27 million Americans have a thyroid issues. Almost 10% of the entire population. The thyroid gland (located in your throat) has many functions in the body, including but not limited to influencing hormones, circulation, heart rate, metabolism, body temperature and more. Hypothyroidism (an underactive thyroid) or Hyperthyroidism (an overactive thyroid) can both be influenced by insufficient levels of selenium. Just 1/4th cup of sunflower seeds contain 34% of your daily value of selenium. If your thyroid is off this is a great food to start eating more often.
Keeps Bones, Muscles, Brain & Cholesterol Healthy:
Sunflower seeds are rich in magnesium, a mineral important for bone and muscle health. The body needs to have an ideal calcium to magnesium ratio. Most people have 2-3 times more calcium than magnesium in their body, causing their ratio to be negatively influenced. You need at least a 1:1 ratio of magnesium to calcium, whereas most people are at a 1:3 magnesium to calcium ratio, or somewhere around there. Magnesium helps build healthy bones, keeps the heart healthy, calms the nerves and helps to keep the muscles healthy and relaxed. It’s needed for many enzymatic processes in the body as well as warding off migraines and depression.
Sunflower seeds have a unique nutritional profile that benefits so many areas of the body. They’re beneficial for inflammation, heart and cardiovascular health, healthy cholesterol levels, blood sugar levels, muscle cramps, preventing heart disease, cancer, thyroid abnormalities, bone loss and skin diseases. They’re rich in healthy fats, minerals, vitamins and antioxidants that serve your health.
The polyunsaturated fat content in sunflower oil is high, and this supports a healthy cholesterol balance. LDL levels decrease when unhealthy fats are replaced with healthy fats, like those from sunflower oil.
Helps Prevent Diabetes And Blood Sugar Abnormalities:
Nuts and seeds (protein) have always been beneficial for blood sugar levels, and sunflower seeds are no exception. The magnesium and selenium in sunflower seeds also help to benefit blood sugar levels and keep the Pancreas healthy. To prevent diabetes, to keep things healthy and in check.
Beneficial For Detoxification & Skin Health:
Sunflower seeds are very rich in Vitamin E, an antioxidant known to help heal and repair the skin. If you’re suffering from acne, psoriasis, eczema or any other skin condition you may want to try eating sunflower seeds more often to get more vitamin E intake. Other B-vitamins found in sunflower seeds are also beneficial for skin. Minerals such as magnesium and niacin found in sunflower seeds are also beneficial for helping the body in it’s natural detoxification pathways to remove impurities and toxins.
Sunflower oil also contains a great array of nutrition that come from sunflower seeds. Sunflower oil is a great oil to cook with all by itself or as an alternative to coconut oil to give the food more of a nutty flavor. Eat more organic sunflower seeds and cook with organic sunflower oil! Your health and body will benefit.
Source: http://draxe.com/sunflower-seeds/ Image: wikimedia.org, wikipedia.org