Sunflower oil is the most popular cooking oil in the world, and it’s really a good thing because sunflower seeds are highly nutritious and very good for your health in general. Nowadays, sunflowers are cultivated in a great number of countries. However, they originated from the Middle American region, and were brought to Europe by explorers.
Sunflower seeds can be used in a variety of recipes, but you can eat them plain as well. They make a good snack because of the numerous health benefits they offer.
- They lower your cholesterol levels.
These seeds are full of linoleic acid (poly-unsaturated fatty acid) and oleic acid (mono-unsaturated fatty acid). These essential fatty acids lower the level of “bad” LDL cholesterol, which means that they cleanse your arteries. This reduces the risk of coronary heart disease and stroke.
- They are rich in proteins.
Proteins are essential nutrients because our bodies use them as “building blocks” for cells. Meat is the richest food source of protein, so vegetarians often run a risk of not getting enough of this particular nutrient. Therefore, it’s essential to include seeds into your diet if you don’t eat dairy products and meat regularly.
- They are great antioxidants.
Sunflower seeds are rich in vitamin E, as well as chlorogenic, caffeic, and quinic acids. All these elements are potent antioxidants, so they protect your body from the damage dealt by free radicals.
- They are one of the best sources of B-complex vitamins.
B vitamins play an essential part in a great number of processes within your body. They are extremely important for the neurological system and reduce the risk of birth defects in babies (folate).
- They provide you with a large dose of all essential minerals.
Sunflower seeds contain all essential minerals in almost equal measure. Eating 100 grams of them will allow you to get almost 100% of the required daily dose of magnesium, manganese, iron, phosphorus, and selenium. Their copper content is double of the required daily dose.