Health Benefits of Sunflower Seed
Organic Sunflower seeds are a good source of many vitamins and minerals. These nutrients are very essential for our body and high quantities of these are found in only few foods, one being sunflower seeds. Hence, sunflower seeds are said to have many health benefits.
Health benefits of organic sunflower seed:1) Anti- inflammatory property.
An observational study have shown that nuts and seeds are associated with reduced inflammation. In particular, sunflower seed reduces levels of C-reactive protein (CRP) which is a chemical that results in inflammation. Sunflower seeds have anti-inflammatory effects as they contain Vitamin E, linoleic acid, linolenic acid and other polyphenolic compounds. Chronic inflammation can lead to many chronic diseases including heart diseases and type 2 diabetes. Regular consumption of sunflower seeds reduces such risks by almost 30%.2) Anti-Depressing properties.
Low levels of hormones like serotonin, dopamine and melatonin in our body results in Depression and Anxiety. Anti-depression pills are available to overcome depression, although studies have shown that plants also contain these hormones in concentration high enough to make an effect.
Sunflower seeds are a natural way to prevent depression as they contain high levels of tryptophan, an amino acid that results in production of serotonin. sunflower seeds have high tryptophan to total protein ratio to maximize the mood elevating benefits.3) Protection against cardiovascular diseases.
Sunflower seeds are rich source of vitamin E, a fat-soluble antioxidant that helps to scavenge free radicals in your body. It helps in controlling your blood cholesterol levels. Low cholesterol means low risk of heart diseases. Many studies show that people who consume right amount of vitamin E have lower risk of dying from a heart stroke.
High blood pressure is a major risk factor for heart disease, which can lead to heart attack or stroke. sunflower seeds are rich in unsaturated fatty acids, especially linoleic acid. Your body uses linoleic acid to make a hormone-like compound that blocks enzymes that causes blood vessels to constrict. As a result, it may help your blood vessels relax, lowering your blood pressure. The magnesium in sunflower seeds helps reduce blood pressure levels as well. Sunflower seeds also exhibit anti-hypertensive effects.4) Decreasing the risk of cancer.
Sunflower seeds are a good source of selenium, a nutrient which many studies have strongly linked to reducing the risk of cancer. It is a powerful antioxidant enzyme which helps the liver to detoxify number of harmful molecules. It plays a major role in repairing DNA and inhibiting the growth of cancer cells. Studies show that high selenium intake lowers the risk of cancer up to 30%. Along with selenium, the whole range of amino acids present in sunflower seeds protects against cancer. Also, the fiber present in sunflower seed helps to prevent the risk of colon cancer.5) Anti-diabetic properties.
The blood-sugar lowering effect of sunflower seeds is due to a compound called chlorogenic acid which helps by preventing glycogen from splitting in the liver. A few studies have shown promising results of the effects of sunflower seed on blood sugar and type 2 diabetes. It is said to decrease the effects of carbs on the blood sugar. The seed 's proteins and fats slow the rate at which your stomach empties, allowing a more gradual release of sugar from carbs. Sunflower seeds have high dietary fiber that prevents high sugar spike.6) Energy supply to the body.
1 ounce of sunflower seeds contain 164 calories which makes them energy powerhouses. The sunflower seeds are rich in B-complex group of vitamins especially vitamin B1 or thiamine.
It is used by nearly all of the cells as Vitamin B1 helps to convert food into energy as it promotes chemical reaction which activates certain enzymes. 1 ounce of sunflower seeds provides 0.4mg of thiamine.
Having sunflower seeds in breakfast is a great option as it provides you the necessary energy that will help you go through your day.7) Strengthening of bones and muscles
The minerals present in sunflower seeds such as magnesium, phosphorus, copper, zinc and many others helps to increase density and strength of the bones. Magnesium is necessary for healthy bones, about two-third of magnesium in our body is needed for our bones. The magnesium helps to give bones their physical structure and the rest is stored on the surface of the bones. It counterbalances calcium which helps in regulating muscle tone.
Also, The B-Group vitamins helps in the mineralization of bones and regulation of muscle activity.