Sesame seeds are one of the healthiest edible seeds to exist and are usually grown and naturalised in the tropical regions of the world. And did you know that the small seeds that you see on the top of your burger are sesame seeds!
Sesame seeds are usually golden brown in colour but hulled seeds which have an off-white shade tend to turn a shade of brown and/or golden when these are roasted. Also, there are numerous benefits of sesame seeds and why you should be consuming more of these!
Health benefits of sesame seeds
1. Packed with nutrients and vitamins
Sesame seeds are rich in numerous nutrients and vitamins including iron, zinc, vitamin E, and vitamin B6 as well; while vitamin E helps in preventing the build-up of plaque in our arteries thereby reducing the risk of strokes, B vitamins work wonders in strengthening our cell and other bodily functions.
And as these are also a great source of fibre, sesame seeds help to keep your digestive health up-to-date. And fibre also helps to keep dangerous health conditions like obesity, heart disease, and type 2 diabetes at bay.
2. Helpful in lowering blood pressure
Sesame seeds consist of quite a good amount of magnesium, which is why these may also help you to lower your blood pressure. And considering how high blood pressure is the number one reason for strokes and heart disease, it is vital to keep your blood pressure in check at all times.
3. A source of antioxidants and nutrients
Jam-packed with protein and various antioxidants, sesame seeds benefit your body in a number of ways. Protein is greatly required by our body as it works as the building cell of our body and helps in building almost everything from our muscles to our hormones. And what better way to get that protein than to consume it as a natural and plant-based source!
4. Helpful in controlling blood sugar
Sesame seeds may help to control your blood sugar to quite a great extent and the principal reason is that these are rich in proteins and healthy fats and low on carbs. Regulating blood sugar is thus yet another great health benefit that these seeds tend to provide us with.
5. Might be effective for blood cell formation
Sesame seeds contain a lot of nutrients and minerals and it just happens to consist the nutrients vital for making red blood cells in your body which are iron, copper, and vitamin B6; iron helps in carrying oxygen to your red blood cells while both copper and vitamin B6 help to make hemoglobin.
This is why it may be of great help when it comes to the formation of blood cells in your body.
6. Supportive for your immune system
This list of all these health benefits of sesame seeds just don’t seem to stop! Well, that’s because of the various vitamins and nutrients that it contains; these are extremely helpful for the overall functioning of your immune system.
7. Might be effective in treating arthritic knee pain
Joint pain that affects your knees can also be treated with the help of regular consumption of sesame seeds. This is because these seeds contain a compound named sesamin that has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties which in turn help with the protection of your cartilage.
A study even shows that people with knee arthritis saw significant results when they consumed sesame seeds along with their prescribed medications, than those who only relied on the latter.
8. May be helpful in regulating hormonal balance during menopause
Did you know that sesame seeds contain plant compounds that are quite similar to the hormone estrogen? Yes!
Although there is pending research on this particular health benefit, sesame seeds might help women during menopause when their estrogen levels tend to drop, due to this quality.
9. Might be supportive of thyroid health
Selenium, which is an imperative mineral when it comes to making of the thyroid hormone, is found in the highest amount in your thyroid gland. And sesame seeds happen to be a good source of this mineral which is why these are said to aid thyroid health as well.
10. May facilitate reduction of inflammation
This is again a rather uncertain study and not a verified fact, however, sesame seed oil along with the seeds, does have certain anti-inflammatory effects which is why these might be helpful in fighting inflammation.
Consumption: How to include sesame seeds in your diet?
It is actually pretty easy to include sesame seeds in your regular diet because all you have to do is add them or top them off in your food!
Here are a list of food items that go well with sesame seed topping/dressing along with some other ways to consume these seeds:
- Bread and/or muffins.
- Cereal (hot/cold).
- Bean dishes.
- Salad, especially if its a fruit salad.
- Sesame paste.
- Sesame seed oil.
- Sesame seed flour for baking, making fish batter, etc…
- Granola and/or granola bars.
- Roasted sesame seeds.
- Soaked sesame seeds.
- Sprouted sesame seeds.
- Black sesame seeds for an enhanced flavour and better crunch.
Besides these, you can also directly go for sesame seed products like tahini, breadsticks, falafel, burger buns, cereal bars, hummus, etc…
So, you can simply opt for bakery products that already contain sesame seeds!
Although there are various benefits of sesame seeds, it is also necessary to keep in mind that one should not consume more than 1 or 2 tablespoons of sesame seeds if they are taking them raw or roasted, and not overdo their dressing with these seeds either. Consumption of a limited amount of sesame seeds is important because if taken in an excess amount, these can have side effects and also cause gastric problems and uneasiness.
People with sesame seed allergy or diabetes should also steer clear of these as for the latter, these might drop their blood sugar level.
So, as long as you consume these in a limited amount, these are going to work for your health just fine.