Seeds are incredibly versatile superfoods that can be added easily to your diet with powerful results. Enjoy these little, yet mighty, plant foods daily to boost your health and receive critical vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and healthy fats. Not to mention, seeds are incredibly flavorful! These are the top 5 seeds you need to be enjoying and quick ways to eat more.
Pumpkin seeds or pepitas are available in abundance this time of year. As Thanksgiving rolls around and you tackle a pumpkin pie from scratch, don’t throw out the valuable insides. These seeds are a great source of protein, heart-healthy fats, magnesium, and phosphorus.
How to enjoy more: Simply scrape out the inside of the pumpkin, rinse off the seeds, pat them dry with a paper towel, and roast at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for about 20 minutes or until the seeds are golden brown. Sprinkle with a little salt and pepper and snack on a handful every day.
They also make a great addition to a fall themed trail mix or sprinkled over soups and salads.
It seems that flaxseeds are almost synonymous with fiber. And with good reason. These little seeds contain a wealth of nutrients, including omega-3 fatty acids, loads of fiber, and lignans that can help reduce blood pressure, cancer risk, and bad cholesterol.
How to enjoy more: Flaxseeds are still healthy when they are eaten whole; however, it is hard for the body to fully absorb the omega-3s when the seed isn’t ground. Because of this, and the fact that the seeds are small, it is best to grind them up and enjoy the flax meal in baking and cooking. Use for bread and any other bakery creations. If you are searching for an egg replacement, simply whisk 1 tablespoon of ground flax seeds with 3 tablespoons water and let it sit for a few minutes to thicken. This can be added to the dough of whatever you are baking and equals one egg.
Many people are low in iron and need to make sure that they get plenty of this nutrient through their diets. Leafy green vegetables are a well-known source of iron, but sesame seeds are incredibly easy to incorporate into your diet.
How to enjoy more: The most common way to enjoy sesame seeds is through tahini or sesame seed butter. This makes up the base of most hummus, but it is also great alone as a healthy dip for crackers and veggies. We love making an easy tahini dip with a little olive oil, lemon juice, tahini, salt, pepper, and garlic salt. Adjust the flavor as needed and pour over your favorite roasted vegetables for an added kick.
If you are looking for a seed to help keep you full, chia seeds will certainly deliver. These little powerhouses can help reduce blood sugar, lower your risk for cardiovascular disease, and even provide anti-inflammatory benefits. Plus, they are a greater source of fiber than flaxseeds.
How to enjoy more: There are so many easy ways to eat more chia seeds. Sprinkle some onto your salad, add a spoonful to a glass of water with lemon and enjoy a refreshing, filling, drink. Remember, chia seeds absorb water, so it is important to eat them along with liquid to make sure that you are adequately hydrated. Overnight chia pudding using almond or coconut milk and some vanilla extract along with a scoop of chia seeds is one of the healthiest breakfasts you can enjoy. Combine the ingredients in a bowl, cover it, and leave it in the fridge overnight. Enjoy with fresh fruit for a delicious way to start your day!
If you are a vegan or vegetarian, you should definitely be eating hemp seeds since they are one of the few plant sources of complete protein. This means that they contain all the essential amino acids that your body can’t make. They are also anti-inflammatory and can improve dry skin and eczema.
How to enjoy more: Sprinkle over yogurt or blend into smoothies. You can also make hemp milk and use ground seeds in baking. Use your imagination and find different ways to introduce these powerful seeds into your daily diet.