The Real Health Benefits Of Sunflower Seeds

If you're looking for a healthier snack to substitute in place of your favorite salty potato chip, consider giving sunflower seeds a try. While sunflower seeds are going to provide a completely different snack experience compared to the large, crunchy chips you're used to munching on, the health benefits that sunflower seeds offer will most certainly be worth the adjustment.

Chances are good, though, that you'll enjoy this fruit of the sunflower plant enough to make it a regular part of your diet. The firm texture and mild, nutty flavor of sunflower seeds gives these little nutritional powerhouses a versatility that easily allows you to eat them raw, roasted, on their own, or as a complement to the wide variety of foods you already eat every day. 

According to Healthline, some of the primary nutrients that you will find in just one ounce of sunflower seeds include 5 and a half grams of protein, 37% of the RDI (recommended daily intake) of vitamin E – an important antioxidant – and 17% of the RDI of folate.

Sunflower seeds can reduce your risk for certain chronic diseases

According to WebMD, a number of studies show a direct connection between eating sunflower seeds and various health benefits. Some of these health benefits include a reduced risk for high blood pressure and heart disease. This is because sunflower seeds contain generous amounts of polyunsaturated fat and monounsaturated fat, the healthy fats associated with improving heart health.

In addition to vitamin E, sunflower seeds contain other plant-based compounds that can help lower inflammation when consumed several times a week, which lowers your risk for certain chronic diseases. Sunflower seeds are also a rich source of zinc and selenium, which can play an important role in fighting infection and inflammation by helping to support your immune system.

So, the next time you plan on opening up a bag of chips, grab a handful of sunflower seeds or a granola bar topped with sunflower seeds instead. Alternatively, try a sprinkling of sunflower seeds on top of your next bowl of cereal, healthy homemade salad, or pasta dish for a tasty serving of nutritional goodness.