What foods do you picture when you think of sesame seeds?
A bagel topped with the golden crunchers? Sesame chicken from your favorite Chinese restaurant? Maybe it’s the delicious sesame honey candy from the Middle East? These may not be the healthiest and I'm not saying these are the best way to get sesame seeds. I'll show you a good way to enjoy them later.
Whichever food is your favorite, it’s nice to know that besides being tasty, sesame seeds are a nutritional powerhouse.
Sesame seeds have been used medicinally for thousands of years.
- Scrolls found in Egypt show that they were used as a medicine 3,500 years ago.
- Babylonian women used them as an anti-aging aid and Roman soldiers ate them for energy and strength.
Today we know that sesame seeds provide multiple benefits because of their high levels of calcium and magnesium. They also contain iron and phosphorous, manganese, zinc, and copper. They are tiny but they're high in fiber too.
Top 9 reasons to eat sesame seeds.
1. They help lower blood pressure. Their oil reduces hypertension and 2 tablespoons of the seeds provides 25% of your RDA of magnesium.
Magnesium has been shown to lower blood pressure by dilating blood vessels.Tweet
2. They're high in antioxidant power. Sesame seeds contain phytate and magnesium. Magnesium is a powerful cancer fighter, while phytate is an antioxidant that fights free radicals in the blood.
That means that besides working against cancer, sesame seeds are great for anti-aging and fighting inflammation.
3. Diabetes fighters. Those seeds may be tiny, but the magnesium in them helps prevent diabetes and helps those who already have it. Sesame seed oil makes diabetes medication more effective. It also regulates insulin and glucose levels.
4. Strong bones. Sesame seeds are loaded with calcium, as well as phosphorous and zinc. Just a quarter cup of sesame seeds has as much calcium as a cup of milk! Sesame seeds helps build new bone and repairs bones that have been injured. They also fight osteoporosis.
Sesame seeds come in a variety of colors – white, black, yellow and red. Black and white sesame seeds are the most common.
Both offer great nutrients but as you can see the black sesame seeds have a slight edge over the white variety.
5. Arthritis help. We’ve mentioned that sesame seeds have antioxidants, but they also contain a high amount of copper. Copper is a secret weapon against joint and muscle pain. It reduces inflammation and strengthens blood vessel walls as well as bones. Copper also helps the body to absorb iron from food.
6. Boost your belly’s function. Sesame seeds are a powerful digestive aid. They are high in fiber and can help keep you regular. Eating plenty of fiber is also good for heart health, and can help you to feel full.
7. Give your skin a glow. Sesame seeds’ high levels of zinc mean that it helps your body produce collagen. Collagen is essential to strong and healthy skin, hair and nails.
8. Boost your metabolism. Sesame seeds are high in protein. Your body uses protein to build muscles. It boosts metabolic rate and gives you high levels of energy.
9. Lower cholesterol. The fat in sesame seeds comes mostly from oleic acid. Oleic acid has been shown to reduce bad cholesterol (LDL) and increase good cholesterol (HDL).
You can add sesame seeds to your diet easily. The oil is used often in hummus, and cooking with sesame seed oil is a great way to get the benefits of sesame seeds too.
For a great way to use both sesame seeds and sesame oil, make this delicious recipe for a different type of salad or side dish.
Yours in Health,
P.S. Please share the good news about Sesame seeds with your friends and I welcome your comments below.