June 7, 2012

Seems a Little Seedy

Flax, Chia, and Hemp. 
These tiny seeds are a powerhouse of nutrition.

Chia Seeds:  After amassing popularity in the 1980's Chia Pet, the  pottery that grows, are creating a buzz once again.  But instead of spreading the seeds and watching them grow, people are simply eating them. These tiny seeds can do much more than just sprout green hair on a terracotta head.  They have been around for centuries and prized by the Aztecs .  The seeds absorb liquid easily, gelling and making a creamy addition to other foods.  That property makes them easy on sensitive stomachs.  They are a concentrated food source of Omega 3 Fatty Acids, carbohydrates, protein, fiber, antioxidants, and calcium.  Though clinical studies are few Chia advocates recommend adding this seed to your diet because it is dense in nutrients, can increase energy and mental focus, keep you feeling fuller longer and help you maintain a healthy weight.  Chia is a low glycemic food and high in fiber, both of which can help stabilize your blood sugar levels and prevent overeating.

Nutritional Boons of Chia Seeds ( per Tbsp): 2g protein, 4g fiber, 1.75g omega-3's

Flax Seeds:  delivers more ALA than any other plant food.  Seeds can be ground in a food processor and added to baked goods or sprinkled over cereal, mixed into smoothies and salad dressings.  Known to be a great source of Omega 3 fatty acids and ligans, both of which have the power to combat against heart disease and certain types of cancer.  Flax is a natural source of fiber and one of the easiest ways to supplement your body with EFA's.  Flax has anti-inflammatory properties that may be useful in the treatment of Lupus and Gout.  They help dissolve gallstones, strengthen and fortify hair, nails, and skin, as well as speed the healing process of skin lesions.  They can clear up acne, rosacea, eczema, psoriasis, even help sunburns heal faster.

Nutritional Boons of Flax Seeds ( per Tbsp): 2g protein, 3g fiber, 13% DV Manganese, 2g Omega-3's

Hemp Seeds:  Hemp plants may be illegal to grow in the US because of their association with the plant, but eating them is very healthy.  As versatile as, and similar in taste to the sunflower seed, hemp seeds can be eaten raw, toasted, sprinkled on yogurt and in salads.  Hemp seeds contain all 8 amino acids and all essential fatty acids EFA's.  Our bodies do not manufacture EFA's so they must come from dietary sources. EFA's help to lubricate all cell membranes, eliminate toxins, and fight depression, viruses, bacteria, fungus, and PMS. Hemp seeds contain 80% highly unsaturated oils and they help muscles recover from exercise by pushing out lactic acids, speed cell growth and enhance the beauty of skin, reduce inflammation and inhibit tumor growth.

Nutritional Boons of Hemp Seeds (per Tbsp): 4g protein, 16% AV Phosphorus, 16% DV Magnesium, 1g Omega-3's

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