Sunflowers have been part of our Indian diet from ages. They are commercially grown either for their oils or their seeds, both being beneficial in its own mechanism. Sunflower seeds have been a more recent discovery for nutrition of vegan and vegetarian based diets. As they have a wide range of nutrients in quite adequate quantities. The nutty taste is quite unique and enjoyable for the majority of people.
Vitamin E and selenium are in high amounts in sunflower seeds. These nutrients function as antioxidants, which protect your body from the damage of free radicals. These seeds have other plant compound that work as antioxidants. Antioxidants such as phenolic acids and flavonoids. These qualities are developed when the seed sprouts and are the right choice for optimum health benefit from consuming them. 1 2 3
Inflammation is a natural immune response. In this the chronic inflammation has a higher chance of developing health issues. One of the health problems was investigated in a study of C-reactive protein levels being affected after consumption of sunflower seeds. C-reactive protein is an inflammatory marker in blood level. This is linked to increasing risk of heart diseases and type 2 diabetes. The results showed a decrease of 32% in C-reactive protein level, such studies are good news. One must try it for themselves as results would vary for each individual’s unique body mechanism.4
May reduce cholesterol levels
High blood pressure level is a major contributor to heart diseases, leading to a stroke or heart attack based on severity. A compound in sunflower seeds when digested blocks an enzyme that is responsible for constriction of blood vessels. This may relax your blood vessels and ultimately could lower your blood pressure. Magnesium in these seeds could play an important role to reduce blood pressure as well. 5 6Being high in unsaturated fats, especially linoleic acid could help lower blood pressure by relaxing the blood vessels. Linoleic acid could potentially aid in lowering cholesterol too. Occurrence of heart disease is lower when higher intake of linoleic acid is observed. 6 7
Aids diabetes control
Observation studies indicate that fasting blood sugar reduced when sunflower seeds were included along with a healthy diet for diabetes prevention and/or control6. Chlorogenic acid was identified as the main contributors for this result. The fats and proteins could help decrease effect of carbs on your blood sugar levels by slowing the rate at which your stomach empties. Enabling a controlled rate of release of sugar from the carbohydrates. 8
Sunflower seeds have shown a great impact on health and if any doubts yet linger in your mind try our Health Refresher and Strength Restorer Rawblends. We have carefully added them in order to not have excessive nutrient intake problems. Eating around 30 grams of sunflower seeds everyday should be plenty for nutritional requirements. It is firm yet has a tender texture, people roast them to enhance the flavor. But we feel the heat could harm the nutrition content slightly. Sunflower seeds can be added to your diet fairly easily as you can add them to your bread dough, nutrition bars or just have them by itself raw. Keep them around you in a jar for some mindful snacking during the day.