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Seeds Health Benefits
Looking to balance your diet with a range of seeds and want to know which ones to buy first? While just about all seeds will give you health benefits, some rise above the rest. Here's a look at the top seeds to buy based on their nutritional value.
Linseeds are usually consumed for their fibre and omega-3 contents. They also contain polyphenols which are important antioxidants. Each of these is responsible for regulating cholesterol in the body. Linseeds are often included in a diet to minimise levels of ‘bad cholesterol' and decrease the risk factors for heart disease. It's best to grind linseeds for maximum absorption of nutritional value. Either grind them yourself or buy LSA to include on your food.
Chai seeds are a similar alternative to linseeds in that they are great sources of fibre, omega-3 and polyphenols. They are associated with reduced inflammation and reduced blood sugar. Studies have also found chia seeds to be effective appetite suppressants for people who are trying to reduce portion sizes or snacking.
Sesame seeds are the best known dietary source of lignans, a very important polyphenol. Sesame seeds can also help to lower cholesterol, improve oestrogen levels, reduce inflammation and repair damaged muscles after exercise. Buy sesame seeds to include in your cooking, especially anything Asian-inspired.
Probably the most popular seeds, pumpkin seeds are excellent sources of healthy fats. In particular, they contain great quantities of phosphorous, monounsaturated fats and omega-6 fats. They have been associated with reduced rates of breast cancer, bladder stones, prostate conditions, high cholesterol and high blood pressure. They are true powerhouses of nutrition! If you are looking for just one seed to buy that will ‘do it all’, pumpkin seeds would be our recommendation.
Quite a few of our seeds can be eaten right out of the bag, especially the roasted pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds which are a delicious snack in themselves. Chia seeds and linseeds are very common in baking. Add them to biscuits, slices and health bars to increase their health benefits. You can also sprinkle them over breakfast cereals or even better, buy some LSA to add on top of your breakfast for an amazing start to the day.
Store your seeds in a similar way to nuts. You want to protect them from environmental degraders like oxygen and heat. These both cause the oils in seeds to start staling. Both heat and oxygen will increase the rate at which seeds start to taste stale. Store seeds in an airtight container away from excesses of heat and humidity. Under 24 degrees celsius is best.