1) CHIA SEEDS
Serving Size = 1 Tsp
Consider these facts about Chia seeds:
- 2.5 times more protein than kidney beans
- 3 times the antioxidant strength of blueberries
- 3 times more iron than spinach
- 6 times more calcium than milk
- 7 times more vitamin C than oranges
- 8 times more omega-3 than salmon
- 10 times more fiber than rice
- 15 times more magnesium than broccoli
The seeds are loaded with vitamins and minerals, are an excellent source of fibre, protein and antioxidants, and are the richest plant source of omega-3 fatty acids. Consumption of chia seeds could help reduce joint pain, aid in weight loss, deliver an energy boost and protect against serious ailments such as diabetes and heart disease.
The seeds are gluten-free, which also makes them appealing to people with celiac disease or an aversion to gluten.
Chia seeds reduce the risk of diabetes and metabolic syndrome. Studies have proven that their consistent use lowers blood pressure. They are recommended to dieters since they give the feeling of being full, so you are less likely to overeat.
2) FLAX SEEDS
Serving Size = 1-2 Tsp (ground)
Dietary fiber from flaxseed suppresses rises in blood levels of lipids after a meal and modulate appetite.
University of Copenhagen researchers report that flax fiber suppresses appetite and helps support weight loss.
Flax has been cultivated for centuries and has been celebrated for its usefulness all over the world. Hippocrates wrote about using flax for the relief of abdominal pains, and the French Emperor Charlemagne favored flax seed so much that he passed laws requiring its consumption!
The main health benefits of flax seed are due to its rich content of Alpha-Linolenic Acid (ALA), dietary fiber, and lignans.
The essential fatty acid ALA is a powerful anti-inflammatory, decreasing the production of agents that promote inflammation and lowering blood levels of C-Reactive Protein (CRP), a biomarker of inflammation. Through the actions of the ALA and lignans, flax has been shown to block tumor growth in animals and may help reduce cancer risk in humans.
Flaxseed combats free radicals and improves digestive and cardiovascular health.
3) PUMPKIN SEEDS
Serving Size = 1/2 Cup
They are the only seed that is alkaline-forming in this world of highly acidic diets.
Add pumpkin seeds to your list of foods rich in protein. 100 grams of seeds on a daily basis provide 54 percent of the daily requirement in terms of protein.
Most of us pop pills to replenish deficiency of vitamin B-complex, try pumpkin seeds next time. Pumpkin seeds are a good source for vitamin B like thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, vitamin B-6 and folates.
For those who are down in the dumps, pumpkin seeds can help fight through depression. The chemical component L-tryptophan is the secret ingredient to boost your mood.
Did you know that pumpkin seeds can prevent kidney stones? Studies suggest that pumpkin seeds can help prevent certain kidney stone formations like calcium oxalate kidney stone.
Pumpkin seeds even hold the secret to fighting parasites, especially tapeworms. They boost immunity, and regulate insulin levels.
4) SESAME SEEDS
Serving Size = 1/4 Cup
Sesame seeds may be the oldest condiment known to man. They are highly valued for their oil which is exceptionally resistant to rancidity.
Not only are sesame seeds a very good source of manganese and copper, but they are also a good source of calcium, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, vitamin B1, zinc and dietary fiber. In addition to these important nutrients, sesame seeds contain two unique substances: sesamin and sesamolin. Both of these substances belong to a group of special beneficial fibers called lignans, and have been shown to have a cholesterol-lowering effect in humans, and to prevent high blood pressure and increase vitamin E supplies in animals. Sesamin has also been found to protect the liver from oxidative damage.
Studies show they may also reduce risk of multiple sclerosis.
5) SUNFLOWER SEEDS
Serving Size = 1/4 Cup
Sunflower seeds are an excellent source of vitamin E, the body's primary fat-soluble antioxidant. Vitamin E travels throughout the body neutralizing free radicals that would otherwise damage fat-containing structures and molecules, such as cell membranes, brain cells, and cholesterol.
Sesame seeds have some of the highest total phytosterol content of seeds. Phytosterols are compounds found in plants that have a chemical structure very similar to cholesterol, and when present in the diet in sufficient amounts, are believed to reduce blood levels of cholesterol, enhance the immune response and decrease risk of certain cancers.
Sunflower seeds are a good source of magnesium. Numerous studies have demonstrated that magnesium helps reduce the severity of asthma, lower high blood pressure, and prevent migraine headaches, as well as reducing the risk of heart attack and stroke.
6) HEMP SEEDS
Serving Size = 1 Tbsp
More people are discovering the nutritional benefits of hemp seed, nut and oil.
- All 20 amino acids, including the 9 essential amino acids (EAAs) our bodies cannot produce.
- A high protein percentage of the simple proteins that strengthen immunity and fend off toxins.
- Eating hemp seeds in any form could aid, if not heal, people suffering from immune deficiency diseases. This conclusion is supported by the fact that hemp seed has been used to treat nutritional deficiencies brought on by tuberculosis, a severe nutrition blocking disease that causes the body to waste away.3
- Nature’s highest botanical source of essential fatty acid, with more essential fatty acid than flax or any other nut or seed oil.
- A perfect 3:1 ratio of Omega-6 Linoleic Acid and Omega-3 Linolenic Acid -- for cardiovascular health and general strengthening of the immune system.
- A superior vegetarian source of protein considered easily digestible.
- A rich source of phytonutrients, the disease-protective element of plants with benefits protecting your immunity, bloodstream, tissues, cells, skin, organs and mitochondria.
- The richest known source of polyunsaturated essential fatty acids.
According to the hemp growers industry, industrial hemp grown for food, fuel and natural fibers contains virtually no THC (less than .3%).
In fact, when hemp is processed into hemp seed oil and hemp seed milk, for example, it further reduces the minute amount of THC in hemp.
And yet, there's still a stigma due to the long-standing idea that hemp and marijuana are one in the same. Hemp is actually categorized with marijuana as part of the Controlled Substances Act of 1970 and is therefore illegal to grow in the US.
The best way to insure the body has enough amino acid material to make the globulins is to eat foods high in globulin proteins. Since hemp seed protein is 65% globulin edistin, and also includes quantities of albumin, its protein is readily available in a form quite similar to that found in blood plasma. Eating hemp seeds gives the body all the essential amino acids required to maintain health, and provides the necessary kinds and amounts of amino acids the body needs to make human serum albumin and serum globulins like the immune enhancing gamma globulins. Eating hemp seeds could aid, if not heal, people suffering from immune deficiency diseases. This conclusion is supported by the fact that hemp seed was used to treat nutritional deficiencies brought on by tuberculosis, a severe nutrition blocking disease that causes the body to waste away.
John Summerly is nutritionist, herbologist, and homeopathic practitioner. He is a leader in the natural health community and consults athletes, executives and most of all parents of children on the benefits of complementary therapies for health and prevention.