“Never look directly at the sun. Instead, look at the sunflower.”
― Vera Nazarian, The Perpetual Calendar of Inspiration
This quote reminds us of how this beautiful sunflower always blooms facing the sun. These vibrant yellow flowers turn towards the sun to receive the sunlight that it needs for photosynthesis. This ability of the sunflower that allows it to move with the sun as it arcs across the sky from the east to the west is known as heliotropism. The flower head of these beautiful flowers is used to harvest edible seeds that are called sunflower seeds. These seeds are technically the fruits of the sunflower plant. They have a nutty taste and are highly nutritive. The sunflower seeds have inedible black and white striped shells which encircle the seeds. These seeds have a mild but tender texture and are often roasted to enhance the taste.
Nutritional value of Sunflower Seeds
Mostly all edible seeds are highly nutritious. They are packed with enriching components known to benefit your health. Let us have a look at the nutritional value of sunflower seeds.
- Calories: 165
- Protein: 5.48 g
- Fat: 14.1 g
- Carbohydrate: 6.82 g
- Fiber: 3.15 g
- Vitamin E: 7.4 g
- Niacin: 2 mg
- Calcium: 19.8 mg
- Magnesium: 36.6 mg
- Zinc: 1.5 mg
- Selenium: 22.5 mcg
- Iron: 1.08 mg
Apart from just being a perfect munching snack, sunflower seeds can benefit health in numerous ways. They are packed with a variety of nutrients and minerals for the better functioning of the body. They are a good source of plant compounds such as phenolic acids and flavonoids which makes them antioxidant in nature. They can boost your energy levels and keep a check on your overall health. Some of the amazing health benefits of sunflower seeds are mentioned below:
Acts as an Immunity Booster:
Sunflower seeds contain a rich amount of zinc, Vitamin E, and selenium which acts as an immunity booster. Vitamins and minerals present in sunflower seeds enhance immune response and protect you against several infectious diseases.
Helps to reduce cholesterol:
Fiber present in sunflower seeds helps to control and decrease the level of LDL cholesterol in the blood. It helps to reduce the total cholesterol level and risk of heart diseases.
Aids in weight loss:
Sunflower seeds are rich in fiber and protein which keeps you full for a longer period. The dietary fiber present in sunflower seeds eases digestion of food and helps control unwanted food cravings and unhealthy eating which can help you in your weight loss journey.
Helps in rejuvenating the skin:
Sunflower seeds provide moisture and nourishment to your skin with the help of fatty acids like linoleic, oleic, and palmitic acid, which help in the formation of collagen and elastin resulting in soft and glowing skin.
Rich in antioxidants:
Zinc is an integral part of our body as it helps in properly maintaining the function of the immune system. Sunflower seeds contain vitamins like zinc and minerals which can help fight infectious diseases and help in boosting immunity.
Helps to manage diabetes:
It is essential to maintain a healthy lifestyle and consume a balanced diet to maintain your blood sugar levels. Sunflower seeds contain nutrients like fiber, magnesium, and protein which help to regularize sugar levels.
Helps reduce the risk of heart diseases:
High blood pressure is considered a major issue that leads to heart diseases like heart attack and stroke. Sunflower seeds contain an enzyme that causes blood vessels to constrict. It helps to lower and normalize the blood pressure levels in our body. For more information about heart health read our blog about How to keep your heart healthy.
Sunflower seeds are very nutritious and provide you with many health benefits. It would be a good idea to introduce it to your diet and get the most of it. Himalayan Natives offer a variety of seeds that are high in nutrients, fiber, and protein. They can help you maintain a better and more balanced lifestyle by keeping a check on your overall health. You can prepare a mix of these seeds and munch on them as a mid-meal snack.
Check out our Instagram post to understand how these seeds can be easily incorporated into most diets. You can also use them while cooking which will make your dishes interesting and more flavorful. Share these benefits with your friends and family and help them adopt a healthy life.