You can prepare a very nutritious homemade and healthy recipe, which can be used to supply the body with vitamins and minerals and improve your overall health. You can even consume it as a snack when you get a little hungry.
Sunflower seeds with honey
The recipe is very simple, and you only need raw, unsalted sunflower seeds and honey. Fill a jar three-fourths with hulled sunflower seeds and add honey until it’s filled. Stir well, then close the jar and keep it in the fridge. You can take one tablespoon of the mixture 2-3 times a day. Sunflower seeds are a valuable source of vitamin E, magnesium, and selenium. They also contain large amounts of phosphorus, copper and B vitamins (B1, B3, B6, and B9). Honey makes eating raw seeds easier and more enjoyable, but it also promotes the absorption of nutrients and digestion. Due to the high content of vitamin E, sunflower seeds protect the cardiovascular system, and Vitamin E acts as an antioxidant, with protective effects on cell membranes, brain cells, and cholesterol.
Health benefits of sunflower seeds
The crunchy and nutty sunflower seeds are considered one of the healthiest foods out there, containing minerals, nutrients, vitamins and antioxidants. They are high in calories, 100g contain 584 calories, and in poly-saturated fatty acids and mono-unsaturated oleic acids which lower the level of bad cholesterol in the blood.
Sunflower seeds are a good source of proteins (which are essential for growth) and poly-phenol compounds (caffeic, quintic and chlorogenic acids) which are natural anti-oxidants, helping remove harmful oxidant molecules from the body.
The Vitamin E in these seeds protects the integrity of the cells, by keeping them away from harmful oxygen-free radicals. Folic acid is essential for DNA synthesis, and it is usually prescribed to pregnant women to prevent neural tube defects in the baby.
Niacin and Pyridoxine are also found in sunflower seeds, and their role is very important for all body systems. They reduce the LDL-cholesterol levels in the blood and enhance the GABA activity inside the brain, reducing anxiety and depression.
Sunflower seeds are also rich in manganese, calcium, zinc, iron, selenium, magnesium, and copper. All these minerals are very important for red blood cell production, bone mineralization, hormone production, enzyme secretion and the regulation of skeletal and cardiac muscle activity.
Sunflower kernels are also rich in the B-complex group of vitamins, such as thiamin, folic acid, niacin, riboflavin, pantothenic acid and pyridoxine.
You should include sunflower seeds to your daily diet by adding them to salads, in fried-rice dishes, in bread or cakes and muffins.
Sunflower seeds are readily available in stores, and you can find them hulled, roasted, salted, whole-seeds, etc. But, you should know that the ones with the greatest amount of nutrients and health benefits are the ones that are raw. Make sure you look for organic and GMO-free sunflower seeds. Those in shops are usually loaded with high-sodium flavorings.