There are several types of seeds beneficial to health including pumpkin, chia, flax, pomegranate, sunflower, sesame and hemp seeds. If we think about what a seed is – a ‘capsule’ containing all the necessary starting materials to transform into an entire plant, we begin to understand what makes them so nutritious.
Seeds are a great source of fibre and protein. They’re also filled with monounsaturated fats, polyunsaturated fats, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. These compounds can help in reducing blood sugar, cholesterol and also blood pressure. Seeds such as flax and chia also contain omega-3 fatty acids which help to combat inflammation in the body and prevent many diseases and conditions including obesity.
Seeds are high in antioxidant polyphenols to help fight free radical damage which can negatively affect our DNA and cells which can lead to oxidative stress and premature ageing.
They’re rich in belly-filling protein and hemp and flax seeds are among a small number of plants that are known as “complete proteins” as they contain all of the so-called essential amino acids that the body cannot manufacture.
Adding seeds to your diet is a get way of getting extra nutrients, as well as protein that will save you from snacking. Seeds are very versatile and can be added to salads, baking, curries and many other dishes. They’re also one of the best snacks for quick but filling nutrition on the go.