Just get a few sunflower seeds in your mouth and soon you might lose the count of how much you’ve eaten already. I bet you’ve been in this situation – take one and you can’t stop eating them. It’s of course not a bad idea to keep count of how much you ate because sunflower seeds are included on the top list of healthy snacks. They are just small and tiny seeds, but contrary, on the benefits and nutritional value it can offer. Just a quarter of a cup per day is recommended daily to get the health benefits from them.
Stop! Read! And be healthy
Each sunflower seed contains Vitamin E, Vitamin B1, B3 and B6, folate, calcium, copper, iron, magnesium and manganese, phosphorus, phytosterols, potassium, selenium, zinc and other valuable nutrients. By eating sunflowers seeds you get all these nutrients that provides a lot of health benefits.
What Health Benefits Do We Get?
Boost immune system
A quarter of a cup of sunflower seeds daily can provide the necessary vitamin E that your body needs. In connection, vitamin E is very essential in strengthening your immune system. A boosted immune system can protect you from viruses, bacteria and other cell protecting mechanism. And guess what? Sunflower seeds are one of the best natural sources of it.
Not just Vitamin E, but also other vitamins and minerals found in sunflower seeds have antioxidant properties that help to fight free radicals and are useful in cancer prevention. Selenium is one of the biggest stars for preventing tumor development in human body, but scientific studies also show that Vitamin B6, calcium, magnesium and zinc are helpful for preventing different types of cancer – they all are found in sunflower seeds.
Support bone and nerve function
The same amount – ¼ cup of sunflower seeds – provides also about one-third of recommended daily magnesium intake. Your bones need it as it supports bone health. Your nerves need this mineral for proper functioning, but that’s just the beginning. Magnesium supports hundreds of processes in human body that keep it strong and healthy.
Your bones and joints get support not just from magnesium, but also calcium, copper and Vitamin E in sunflower seeds. Eating sunflower seeds might prevent joint pain and bone diseases, alleviate arthritis symptoms and help to keep you bones strong.
Cardiovascular diseases prevention
High magnesium content of sunflower seeds lower blood pressure that prevents heart attack. Vitamin E content prevents cardiovascular disease and presence of phytosterols help to reduce cholesterol levels.
Finally, it’s a great snack that helps reduce stress making you feel calmer, more relaxed and balanced . Aside from previously mentioned vitamins and minerals, amino acid called tryptophan is also found in sunflower seeds – it’s a substance that supports other processes of human body which are necessary for nervous relaxation, optimal brain functioning and promoting quality sleep.
When you know the health benefits sunflower seeds can bring, this tiny seed doesn’t seem that small anymore. There is just one more thing to consider before purchasing sunflower seeds: always choose the most natural version available. Those salted sunflower seeds makes tasty snack, but they also can make you to intake way more salt than your body can process – it means more harm than benefit. Go for plain, dried sunflower seeds, add them to your salads, sprinkle raw sunflower seeds in your soups and stews, or just measure ¼ a cup daily and snack with these seeds between meals. The nutritious value of sunflower seeds is higher than many other foods we eat daily, so they truly are worth a place on your menu.