Seeds 101

Hi friends, happy Friday!

How was the week that went by?

As you know, “Nutrition Works” is the name of my own Nutrition Label under which I have a chocolate-cake (and another lemon-cake in pipeline) which many of you have ordered multiple times and loved. Most heartening was the fact that the kids love it too. This proves that we don’t have to feed our kids (and ourselves, of course) all the unhealthy ingredients of a commercial-cake just because they like it. They like the healthier version, just fine too.

The week was exciting for me as after cakes, I have launched the second product which is a “Seeds Bar”. These seed-bars are handmade fresh on order, with clean/premium/natural ingredients and have no added sugar or oils. It is high in protein, good fats and fibre…good carbs too!

Today’s post had to be about seeds. In our daily diet, seeds are majorly missing. How many of us eat seeds on a regular basis? Nuts, we still manage but seeds, hardly. We forget to consume these little precious nutrition-dense nuggets that the nature has provided us with so magnanimously.

Let’s get acquainted with seeds today. And then you can add some to your diet if you want. However, make sure the type or quantity doesn’t have any medical contradictions and it aligns with your goals, if you have any.

What Are Seeds?

Seeds hold all the ingredients to start a whole new life some day, provided the conditions are right. That’s how full of wholesome nutrition they are. Nutrients such as:

  • Fibre
  • Good fats
  • Antioxidants
  • Vitamins
  • Minerals

When they are included in our diet as a part of well-balanced meal, they can help us in multiple way. Depending upon what and how much we eat, it can help us in many things such as:

  • Blood sugar control
  • Cholesterol
  • Digestion
  • Blood pressure

There are many seeds available for human consumption today. We have access to local as well as imported seeds. Our traditional Indian diets always included seeds such as sesame, pumpkin etc as per our seasonal and medicinal requirements.

Since it is not possible to cover all the seeds of the world here, let us today discuss 4 seeds that are highly popular and easily accessible for us. These are:

  1. Chia seeds
  2. Flax seeds
  3. Sesame seeds
  4. Pumpkin seeds

Each of these is a compact powerhouse in itself. Though every seed might not suit everyone but most of us can benefit from these for sure, in moderation and as a part of a well-balanced diet.

  1. Chia Seeds: Coming to limelight a few years back, these small black seeds are not to be confused with Indian basil/sabja seeds. Chia is Quite high in fibre and good fat especially Omega-3 (ALA form). It is also a very rich source of B1, manganese and magnesium.

Apart from this, chia seeds are high in polyphenols which is a potent antioxidant. With all these benefits, and as a part of well-balanced diet, chia seeds can effectively:

  • Improve sugar levels
  • Improve cholesterol
  • Reduce heart concerns
  • Increase satiety meaning can keep us full for long

2. Flax Seeds: Also called sometimes linseeds, flax seeds are also high on fibre and Omega-3 (ALA) however it is best to eat them roasted and ground. Flax seeds are also powerful antioxidants and can help reduce LDL levels when used as a part of well-balance diet.

Lignans, a kind of polyphenols found in flaxseeds especially is a phytoestrogen though it can help men also in certain cases. Other than this, flaxseeds can help with:

  • Sugar levels
  • Heart risks
  • Cholesterol levels
  • Reduces risk of certain cancers

3. Sesame Seeds: My favorite seeds (mostly because of til laddoos) and quite high in another lignan called sesamin, may effectively help with a lot of things including:

  • Estrogen concerns
  • Cholesterol concerns
  • Inflammation in body
  • Arthritis
  • General health and fitness

4. Pumpkin Seeds: Pumpkin seeds are rich in good fats, phosphorus and certain other minerals. A varied nutritional profile in pumpkin seeds can help in:

  • Reducing risk of bladder stones and other urinary discomforts
  • Improving menopausal symptoms 
  • Certain cancers
  • Helping with enlarged prostates
  • Lowering of blood cholesterol

There are a lot of other seeds available in market today such a basil/sabja seeds, hemp seeds, sunflower seeds, pine seeds, poppy seeds etc. Even quinoa, wild rice and pomegranate (fruit) are seeds. These are easy to add to our diet as a part of salads, smoothies, bars etc. Just make sure you use in moderation and avoid any medical contradictions.

Hope you found today’s post useful. It skims the surface of seeds but that was the whole idea today. In case you wish to join me on Instagram, for regular stories on Health, Nutrition, Fitness and Motivation…here is the link:

https://www.instagram.com/healthcoach_smita/

Till next Friday

Love, Health and Peace

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