Health Benefits of Sunflower Seeds

I’m sure at some point everyone has enjoyed a nice bag of sunflower seeds, wether you were at a baseball game or just chopping down a few on a nice summer afternoon. If you haven’t well, to put it nicely, YOUR MISSING OUT.

Now, when I was younger, sureee a bag of traditional salted sunflower seeds would do the trick, but  today I much prefer to chop on the SPROUTED organic variety. Sprouted sunflower seeds are actually relatively easy to find. Check out my favorite brand, GO Raw or give Living Intentions a try, they offer trail mix type bags of seedy goodness all with varying flavors.

To make you want to eat sunflower seeds even more this spring, here’s a short little list of their top nutrients and benefits associated with them!

Benefits of Sunflower Seeds

Magnesium: plays an important role in calming the body. Plus if OSTEOPOROSIS is in your family your gonna want as much of this mineral as you can get ( ok not quiet, don’t wanna go over board, but you get the picture). Magnesium helps the absorption of calcium into the intestines, therefore helping the overall absorption quantity.  Researchers have been able to induce osteoporosis in animals by feeding them a low- magnesium diet! CRAZY!!! A quarter cup of sunflower seeds give you more than 25% of the daily recommended value of magnesium!

 

Selenium: A not exactly well know nutrient but essential nutrient. It functions as an antioxidant that can help reduce swelling in the body. It has a special pace in glutathione production, a enzyme that plays a key role in the bodies DETOXIFICATION process.  ATTENTION thyroid suffers, selenium is also plays a critical role in thyroid hormone metabolism. If you know anything about the thyroid it converts the less active T4 hormone into the more active T3.  A 1/4 cup of sunflower seeds offers 34% of your daily needs.

Vitamin E: As a powerful antioxidant, helps fight free radical damage, something we should all want to avoid.  Also those who have a predisposition to HIGH CHOLESTEROL, benefit from the protective properties of Vitamin, which stops free radical damage occurring on LDL ( the bad cholesterol). When free radical damage that occurs on this “bad cholesterol”, it may initiated the early stages of atherosclerosis ( hardening of arteries). A 1/4 cup of sunflower seeds has 82% of the recommended value .

Vitamin B1: Easily lost through cooking, raw sprouted sunflower seeds are a great way to get your daily recommended value, as a 1/4 cup offers 42%. B1 helps to promote energy production from carbohydrates and fats. If you know anything about the Krebs cycle, lets just say vitamin B1 plays a very important role in getting the early stages of this energy generating cycle flowing. We all need energy to keep moving, breathing, and grinding. B1 is also important to the “structure and integrity” of the brain cells, according to Worlds Healthiest Foods.  Keep those BRAIN cells healthy and add some B1 to your daily smoothie with a sprinkle of sunflower seeds!

Do you eat sunflower seeds often? Do you even like sunflower seeds?!

If you have a great recipe with them and you’d like to share PLEASE DO!


Sources:

http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=57

http://www.globalhealingcenter.com/natural-health/health-benefits-of-sunflower-seeds/

 

 

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