It’s hard to find one man-made super food, let alone 4, that offers protection for your heart, brain, bones, joints, and keeps your skin looking ageless to boot. Yet, that’s exactly what these 4 super seeds do.
1. Pumpkin seeds. Pumpkin seeds have long been regarded as a potent medicine since the days of the ancient Greeks. And, they’re still used as medicine today by Native Americans. They’re chock full of nutrients that offer significant health benefits to your heart, brain, and bones.
For your heart, pumpkin seeds are high in monounsaturated fatty acids which help lower LDL “bad” cholesterol and raise HDL “good” cholesterol. Because they’re alkaline in pH, they also cool down vascular inflammation which leads to heart disease.
High in the amino acid L-tryptophan, pumpkin seeds help fight depression as well as help you sleep. Studies show that lack of sleep leads to daytime depression and aging changes of the brain. Also high in the B vitamins which support nerves and all their functions.
Pumpkin seeds are high in zinc, a crucial mineral that older people are commonly deficient in. Zinc helps prevent osteoporosis that affects older people, especially post menopausal women. Their anti-inflammatory properties also help turn off the pain of joint conditions like arthritis.
Pumpkin seeds have also long been used to help treat frequent urination from an enlarged prostate that can affect older men.
2. Flax seeds. Flax seeds are one of the best multi-tasking nutrients around.
First, they’re high in Omega-3 fatty acids which protects your heart, brain, and your entire body from disease promoting inflammation. They also prevent blood platelets from clumping together and forming dangerous clots.
Secondly, flax seeds are a natural phytoestrogen which greatly benefit older women in relieving the symptoms of menopause and post menopause. Phytoestrogens are plant estrogens that the body can convert to use as it needs. They also have major antioxidant properties that fight free radical damage in skin. You see this damage on your skin as brown spots, lines, wrinkles and sagging.
Third, flax seeds help lower blood sugar levels and fight obesity. Because of their high lignan oil content, they help dampen hunger. Flax seeds can be added to the diet easily by adding 1 tablespoon to cereals, stir-frying with vegetables, or blending with smoothies.
3. Sunflower seeds. These easy seeds are really powerhouse nutrients disguised as a cheap snack.
They’re full of betaine, an important digestive nutrient, which everyone over 40 could use a little more of. Betaine helps you break down the nutrients in your food so that your body can absorb them better. They also contain fiber which helps sweep toxins from the colon.
They’re also full of Vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant that keeps your heart and brain healthy. Recent studies published in several medical journals have shown that higher intakes of Vitamin E may not only help prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s disease, but also help slow the progressive decline of already established Alzheimer disease.
4. Chia seeds. Many people don’t realize these are much more than seeds to grow those crazy “chia pet” plants with. Chia seeds are one of Nature’s best kept nutritional secrets.
They are loaded with antioxidants – some nutritionists say even more than blueberries; they’re high in fiber which makes the little carbs they contain almost nil; they’re also high in important minerals like manganese, magnesium, phosphorus, calcium which helps build strong bones. They’re also a good source of potassium which helps regulate your heartbeat and keep your nerves functioning properly.
Studies on patients with type 2 diabetes have also shown that eating chia seeds for breakfast lowered inflammatory blood markers (C-RP) by 40%. In addition, they lowered blood pressure by several points in the upper and lower readings. Chia seeds can also be an easy added source of protein for older people concerned with maintaining muscle strength. Because they don’t need to be ground before eating, they’re very easily added to your diet. Sprinkle a 1 ounce serving on salads, in stir-fry vegetables, or roasted with meats.
It’s hard to believe that such simple and basic foods like seeds could have such profound effects on your health and longevity. If you’re looking for some simple ways to protect your health and fight aging, adding more of these delicious seeds to your diet can help.
healthyliving June 10th, 2016
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