Seeds are rich in nutrients and have many health benefits. These small but mighty kernels are high in vitamins and minerals the body needs to function at peak performance. Seeds are extremely versatile and can be incorporated easily into a variety of different recipes. Need more energy? Want a slimmer waist? There’s a seed for that!

Flax seeds

Flax seeds, also known as flax seeds, are an excellent source of fiber and omega-3 fatty acids, especially alpha-linolenic acid. However, omega-3 fatty acids are contained in the outer fibrous envelope of the seed, which humans cannot digest easily. Therefore, if you want to increase your omega-3 levels, it is best to eat flaxseeds that have been ground. A 1 ounce (28 gram) serving of flax seeds contains a wide mixture of nutrients.

flax seeds

  • Calories: 152
  • Fiber: 7.8 grams
  • Protein: 5.2 grams
  • Monounsaturated fat: 2.1 grams
  • Omega-3 fats: 6.5 grams
  • Omega-6 fats: 1.7 grams
  • Manganese: 35% of the RDI
  • Thiamine (vitamin B1): 31% of the RDI
  • Magnesium: 28% of the RDI

Chia Seeds

Chia has come a long way since it first sprouted out of funny pottery in TV commercials. These tiny seeds pack in 10 grams of fiber in a 2-tablespoon serving. They also contain proteins, omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, and minerals like: iron, calcium, magnesium, and zinc.

chia seeds

Chia seeds are easy to add to your favorite dishes. Sprinkle them ground or whole onto cereal, vegetables, or yogurt. Soak them in water to add to cooked cereal, or find a recipe for chia pudding as a healthy and tasty dessert.

Pumpkin seeds

Pumpkin seeds are a tasty snack that accounts for 16% of your daily iron requirement in just ¼ cup. That same ¼ cup will also give you 5 grams of fiber, which is more than most nuts. In addition, pumpkin seeds are a good source of amino acids, protein and omega-3, as well as minerals like zinc and magnesium.

pumpkin seeds

Fresh roasted pumpkin seeds – a Halloween favorite – are a great snack, but you can enjoy them all year round sprinkled with oatmeal, baked in muffins, mixed in smoothies, or added to cereals and homemade energy bars.

Wild Rice

wild rice

Surprise! Wild rice isn’t rice at all — it’s actually a grass seed. It’s higher in protein than other whole grains and has lots more antioxidants than white rice. It also provides folate, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc, vitamin B6, and niacin. It cooks up tender and fluffy in a rice pilaf, and the warm grains are a hearty addition to green salads.

Sunflower Seeds

Sunflower seeds contain a good amount of protein, monounsaturated fats and vitamin E. One ounce (28 grams) of sunflower seeds contains. Sunflower seeds can be associated with reduced inflammation in middle-aged and elderly people, which can help reduce the risk of heart disease. An observational study of more than 6,000 adults found that a high intake of nuts and seeds was associated with reduced inflammation.

sunflower seeds

 

In particular, consuming sunflower seeds more than five times a week was associated with reduced levels of C-reactive protein (CRP), a key chemical involved in inflammation. Another study looked at whether eating nuts and seeds affected blood cholesterol levels in postmenopausal women with type 2 diabetes. Women consumed 30 grams of sunflower seeds or almonds as part of a healthy diet every day for three weeks.

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