If you’re looking for a high quality, nutritious and filling snack, seeds are a hard to beat. A seed is an embryonic plant itself and the origin of nutrition and is filled with high concentrations of vitamins, minerals, proteins, essential oil, dormant enzymes and other life-enhancing nutrients. Numerous studies have shown that different types of seeds and nuts can actually prevent weight gain, the development of heart disease and the accumulation of LDL cholesterol. Seeds also provide most cooking oils, many beverages and spices and some important food additives. In different seeds the seed embryo, or the endosperm, dominates and provides most of the nutrients.
A seed is a living food, therefore the only one way to truly take advantage of the nutritional benefits from seeds and that is to eat them raw. Once they are exposed to heat, they produce toxic substances and the vitamin, mineral and essential oil profiles are denatured. By roasting a seed, its classification moves from a living food to a dead food and note that there is no seed on earth that can withstand roasting or heating without breaking down its nutritional components. You should consume seeds raw, which also means they can be soaked, ground or mashed (i.e. tahini), especially if a seed’s shell or coat is too difficult to pierce with the teeth.
- Chia Seeds
- Loaded with vitamins and minerals
- 3 times more iron than spinach
- 6 times more calcium than milk
- 7 times more vitamin C than oranges
- 15 times more magnesium than broccoli
- Are an excellent source of fiber, protein and antioxidants, and are the richest plant source of omega-3 fatty acids
- 10 times more fiber than rice
- 2.5 times more protein than kidney beans
- 3 times the antioxidant strength of blueberries
- 8 times more omega-3 than salmon
- Could help reduce joint pain & deliver an energy boost
- Can protect against serious ailments such as diabetes and heart disease
- They are gluten-free
- Stabilize the blood sugar, promote heart health, as well as increase weight loss.
- Loaded with vitamins and minerals
- Hemp Seeds
- All 20 amino acids, including the 9 essential amino acids (EAAs) our bodies cannot produce.
- A high protein percentage of the simple proteins that strengthen immunity and fend off toxins.
- Eating hemp seeds in any form could aid people suffering from immune deficiency diseases.
- Nature’s highest botanical source of essential fatty acid, with more essential fatty acid than flax or any other nut or seed oil.
- A perfect 3:1 ratio of Omega-6 Linoleic Acid and Omega-3 Linolenic Acid which is necessary for cardiovascular health and general strengthening of the immune system.
- A superior vegetarian source of protein considered easily digestible.
- A rich source of phytonutrients, the disease-protective element of plants with benefits protecting your immunity, bloodstream, tissues, cells, skin, organs and mitochondria.
- The richest known source of polyunsaturated essential fatty acids.
According to the hemp growers industry, industrial hemp grown for food, fuel and natural fibers contains virtually no THC (less than .3%). In fact, when hemp is processed into hemp seed oil and hemp seed milk, for example, it further reduces the minute amount of THC in hemp. And yet, there’s still a stigma due to the long-standing idea that hemp and marijuana are one in the same. Hemp is actually categorized with marijuana as part of the Controlled Substances Act of 1970 and is therefore illegal to grow in the US but don’t be worried about hemp’s relation to marijuana. While they’re both members of the cannabis family, hemp doesn’t contain THC, marijuana’s active ingredient, so you can’t become high from consuming hemp seeds. Hemp seeds can be used in salads and smoothies and are also ideal for baked goods, shakes, yogurt and cereal. They’re gluten-free too. Hemp Seeds are a certified superfood with cancer and heart disease prevention properties.
- Pomegranate Seeds
- A rich source of antioxidants
- Helps to protect your body’s cells from free radicals, which cause premature aging.
- Pomegranate juice pumps the level of oxygen in your blood
- The antioxidants fight free radicals and prevents blood clots
- Especially high in polyphenols, a form of antioxidant purported to help reduce the risk of cancer and heart disease
- High in vitamin C and potassium, low in calories (80 per serving, which is just under one-third of a medium fruit), and a good source of fiber
- Can reduce the damage on the cartilage for those with arthritis by lessening the inflammation and fights the enzymes that destroy the cartilage.
Pomegranate juice, which contains health-boosting tannins, anthocyanins, and ellagic acid, has higher antioxidant activity than green tea and red wine. The pomegranate, with its edible seeds inside juicy sacs, is has antioxidant properties that prevent low-density lipoprotein cholesterol from oxidizing. This essentially means that pomegranates prevent the hardening of the artery walls with excess fat, leaving your arteries fat free and pumping with antioxidants.
- Flax Seeds
- Dietary fiber from flaxseed suppresses rises in blood levels of lipids after a meal and modulate appetite
- The main health benefits of flax seed are due to its rich content of Alpha-Linolenic Acid (ALA), dietary fiber, and lignans. The essential fatty acid ALA is a powerful anti-inflammatory, decreasing the production of agents that promote inflammation
- Helps to stabilize hormonal levels, reducing the symptoms of PMS and menopause, and potentially reducing the risk of developing breast and prostate cancer due to Phytoestrogens
- The fiber in flax seed promotes healthy bowel function
- One tablespoon of whole flax seed contains as much fiber as half a cup of cooked oat bran
- Flax’s soluble fibers can lower blood cholesterol levels, helping reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke
- Ground flax seed provides more nutritional benefits than does the whole seed
Flax seed shells are hard, so it’s important to grind the seeds in a blender or coffee grinder before eating them. If you don’t, the seeds can pass through your body undigested, hindering the absorption of the seeds’ valuable omega-3 content. Coarse or finely ground flax seeds can be added to smoothies, shakes, yogurt, oatmeal, cereal, and baking. Ground flax seed should be kept in an airtight container in your refrigerator.
- Pumpkin Seeds
- The only seed that is alkaline-forming
- They are rich in protein.
- Good source for vitamin B like thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, vitamin B-6 and folates.
- These seeds can help fight through depression because the chemical component L-tryptophan which will help boost your mood & decrease anxiety
- Can help prevent kidney stones
- Hold the secret to fighting parasites, especially tapeworms
- High in a form of antioxidant known as carotenoids, a special plant derivative that enhances immune activity and disease fighting capacities. These seeds are also high in omega-3 fatty acids and zinc, two important nutrients that may play a role in supporting skeletal health
- High in phytosterols, a plant component that aids in keeping stable levels of cholesterol and enhanced immune response
Raw or roasted pumpkin seeds make a healthy snack, or you can use them in baking, cooking, as a soup garnish, and in homemade trail mix or granola. Pumpkin seed oil makes a healthy addition to salad dressings, and dips, however, it’s unadvisable to cook with pumpkin seed oil as heat can destroy its nutritional properties.
- Apricot Seeds
Apricot seeds (aka Apricot kernels), Apple seeds, and other bitter fruit seeds contain Amygdalin aka Vitamin B17 which has incredibly powerful anti-cancer properties. There are many cases of people who cured their cancer with Apricot kernels alone!
- Sesame Seeds
- They are highly valued for their oil which is exceptionally resistant to rancidity.
- A good source of manganese, copper, calcium, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, vitamin B1, zinc and dietary fiber
- Sesame seeds contain two unique substances: sesamin and sesamolin. Both of these substances belong to a group of special beneficial fibers called lignans, and have been shown to have a cholesterol-lowering effect in humans, and to prevent high blood pressure and increase vitamin E supplies in animals. Sesamin has also been found to protect the liver from oxidative damage.
- They are unique in their chemical structure
- Sesame seeds also may help prevent many health problems, including arthritis, asthma, migraine headaches, menopause, osteoporosis, and may even reduce PMS symptoms
Tahini is a ground sesame seed paste that’s popular ingredient in Middle Eastern dishes we eat, like hummus.
- Sunflower Seeds
- Are good sources of magnesium and numerous studies have demonstrated that magnesium helps reduce the severity of asthma, lower high blood pressure, and prevent migraine headaches, as well as reducing the risk of heart attack and stroke.
- They promote healthy digestion and increase fiber intake
- Extremely rich in folate, a very important nutrient for women
- They are packed full of good fats, antioxidant-rich Vitamin E, selenium and copper, all crucial elements in supporting heart health and balancing troublesome cellular damage.
- Cumin Seeds
- Cumin is a seed that has been used since antiquity, this traditional herb is known for its health benefits and medicinal uses for hundreds of years
- Useful for digestive disorders and even as an antiseptic
- The seeds themselves are rich in iron and help boost the power of the liver
- Helps relieve symptoms of common cold
- It is also considered to be a powerful kidney and liver herb which can help boost the immune system
- It’s also believed that black cumin seeds can treat asthma and arthritis
If you have a sore throat, try adding some dry ginger to cumin water, to help soothe it. Cumin juice makes for a great tonic for the body even if you don’t have a specific ailment. It is said to increase the heat in the body thus making metabolism more efficient.
- Grape Seeds
- Grape seeds have a great concentration of vitamin E, flavonoids, linoleic acid and polyphenols.
- Grape seed extract may prevent heart diseases such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol
- By limiting lipid oxidation, phenolics in grape seeds may reduce risk of heart disease, such as by inhibiting platelet aggregation and reducing inflammation
- Grape seed extract (GSE) kills squamous cell carcinoma cells, while leaving healthy cells unharmed
- They may even reduce the infectivity of Norovirus surrogates according to research published in Applied and Environmental Microbiology
- Wheat Germ
- The nutritional powerhouse of the wheat kernel
- It is loaded with protein, iron and B vitamins such as folate
- Its high fiber content helps prevent constipation and keeps your appetite in check
- It is very low on the glycemic index, meaning that it doesn’t cause a blood-sugar spike so you will stay fuller longer
Wheat germ makes a great addition to smoothies, hot cereals, baking and cooking recipes. Be sure to store raw wheat germ properly. Its healthy polyunsaturated fats can quickly turn rancid. You want to keep wheat germ in a tightly sealed container in the freezer for optimum freshness.