Written by Tangela Kindell, Nutritionist, FH Community Manager
Here at Flourish Heights, we’re all about the growth of mind, body, and spirit. Nothing symbolizes growth better than seeds – the part of plants from which new plants can grow. This tiny food packs a mighty nutritional punch with high concentrations of protein, fiber, healthy fats, and essential minerals for women’s health like folate, magnesium, and zinc. Best yet, seeds are one of the most versatile foods out there! Add whole seeds, seed oils, and seed flours to take your meals, snacks, and treats to the next level. Here are four highly available seeds you can try today.
1. Chia Seeds
Chia seeds, also known as Salvia hispanica, are a super nutritious member of the mint family. Chia seeds are known for their uniquely high fiber content at 10 grams per oz – that’s nearly half the recommended daily intake in a 2 tablespoon portion! Fiber has the power to support healthy digestion, promote regularity, regulate blood sugar levels, lower cholesterol, and keep you fuller for longer.
How to use them: combine 2 tablespoons of chia seeds, a 1/2 cup of your milk of choice, and 1 teaspoon of honey or maple syrup into a container. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours for a quick and easy chia seed pudding. Top with your favorite fruit and serve.
2. Sesame Seeds
Sesame is a highly flavorful and aromatic seed that has been used as a health food for centuries, most popular in traditional Chinese and Indian medicine. Sesame seeds are high in protein, fiber, vitamin B1 (thiamin), and minerals like iron, magnesium, calcium, and zinc to boost immunity, support strong bones, and keep you energized. Sesame seeds are the best-known food source of a special class of antioxidants called lignans that can reduce inflammation, slow the process of aging, and promote cardiovascular health.
How to use them: sprinkle sesame seeds over salads or soups to add a hit of nutty, toasty flavor to your meals
3. Pumpkin Seeds
Pepitas or pumpkin seeds are chock full of vital minerals for women’s health including potassium, zinc, iron, and calcium. In particular, pumpkin seeds are one of the best natural sources of magnesium which has been shown to significantly reduce PMS symptoms including menstrual cramps, insomnia, and low mood. The addition of tryptophan (an amino acid) in pumpkin seeds further boosts their mood and sleep-improving properties.
How to use them: sprinkle raw, unsalted pumpkin seeds into yogurt for a satisfying crunch.
4. Hemp Seeds
Hemp seeds are an excellent source of plant-based protein (8.8 grams per serving) and one of few plant-based complete proteins, meaning it contains all of the essential amino acids the body requires through food. Protein is essential for building strong muscles, maintaining healthy skin, balancing hormones, and overall growth.
How to use them: add 2 tablespoons of hemp seeds to a smoothie for a nutrient-packed, post-workout energy boost.
How do you plan to add seeds to your diet? Share in the comments below.