The Good Seeds – With Apologies to Nick Cave
Seeds may be small in size, but they are stacked with nutrition. Sufficed to say they punch well above their weight in the nutrition stakes. Seeds are a rich source of omega 3 fatty acids, manganese, vitamin E, iron, phosphorous, calcium, folate and fibre. Here are six seeds to consider including in your diet:
Pumpkin seeds (aka pepitas) are chock-a-block full of iron, zinc, vitamin A, magnesium, phosphorous and fibre. They are delicious toasted and can be added to bread or sprinkled on salads.
Sunflower kernels are full of magnesium, folate, thiamin, vitamin B6, manganese and phosphorous. Add them to muesli and cereals for some extra crunch as well as to bread and salads. They are regularly used in Middle Eastern cuisine. If you ever go to a soccer match in the Middle East you’ll be sure to see lots of spectators snacking on them. – they are a much more nutritious option than pie and chips.
Linseeds are loaded with polyunsaturated fats, the hearty healthy ones, plus protein, fibre, zinc, magnesium, phosphorous, thiamin and calcium. These little guys can be added to cereal, bread, yoghurt and even used in baking. Your heart will thank you.
Poppy seeds, which are derived from the opium poppy, contain heaps calcium, manganese, phosphorous and zinc. They go wonderfully well in baked goods, but can also be added to salads, bread and sprinkled over pasta. They may have naughty origins, but they are so good. And, yes, they are legal!
Sesame seeds come in a variety of colours – brown, red, black and off white. The darker the seed, the stronger the flavour. They are rich in calcium, iron, zinc, fibre, phosphorous, fibre and heart-healthy mono and polyunsaturated fats. These seeds are incredibly versatile. They can be used in salad dressings, stir-fries and salads. Sesame seeds are used to make tahini. Those with a low dairy intake may benefit from upping their intake of sesame seeds due to their high calcium content. A present for your skeleton, perhaps?
Chia seeds have exploded on the market in recent times. And with good reason too. They are loaded with fibre, calcium, omega 3 fatty acids, calcium, magnesium, thiamin, niacin, manganese and iron. They can be added to breakfast cereals, salads, pilafs, porridge and baked goods. Chia seeds have been shown to improve heart health by improving blood pressure and lowering cholesterol.
Whatever your seed they are all loaded with nutritional goodies. Continue to sow those seeds, but include them in your diet too.