Are sunflower seeds healthy to eat? What are the undesirable effects of sunflower seeds? Contraindications? Drug interactions? Nutritional values of 50 g of sunflower seeds? How to eat them? And finally, what are the benefits of sunflower seeds?
I- Are sunflower seeds healthy to eat?
1. The undesirable effects of sunflower seeds?
The sunflower or garden sun, popularly known for its numerous by-products and its strong potential in cooking, remains the best in America and Europe.
Although flax and olives tend to compete with it, its power continues to grow and today it is recommended in cosmetics and dietetics.
Of Mexican and North American origin, the sunflower is a yellow plant with no particular flavor. Flowering in summer, its stem at the time of harvest can be up to 4 meters high and its flower 30 centimeters in diameter.
When you think about it, many people consume sunflower seeds because of their benefits. But what about its undesirable effects, knowing that philosophically speaking, behind all beauty lies a picture stained with darkness?
Indeed, the undesirable effects linked to the consumption of sunflower seeds are physiological.
Well, simply because :
A high concentration of seeds invariably affects the state of the body and does not always change it for the better.
In addition, fat is easily absorbed by the body. Knowing that the human body puts a lot of effort into processing proteins, it becomes easier and more independent for fats, the main source of light energy, to be absorbed.
Therefore, when there is a surplus of fats and the body has no more room to transform them into energy, they accumulate to form a fat deposit. This is dangerous for the tissues of the same type.
The sunflower seeds are particularly endowed with a calorific potential rather important even high.
In fact, the calorie content of the said seeds represents five hundred and eighty (580) calories for a portion of 100 G.
This means that sunflower seeds have a much higher calorie content than certain combinations of fast food and ice cream.
As a result, they should be consumed in moderation at the unprecedented risk of contributing to the formation of excess weight.
And after extensive biological research on the composition of sunflower seeds, it turned out that they all contain a dangerous substance: cadmium.
This substance enters the soil (or agricultural production) and water (fishery resources), but also the human body without an ounce of modification (it is ingested in a raw way).
Cadmium then appears in the body’s tissues, accumulates and causes pathological processes (ailments or diseases). Why does this happen?
Simply because in one hundred grams of sunflower seeds, we find 0.02 milligrams of the said substance knowing that the safety range for the consumption of a substance is 0.07 milligrams per day. In short, it comes down to a basic equation as described here:
Overconsumption of sunflower seeds = accumulation of cadmium in the body = cardiovascular and even renal diseases.
The ideal would be without question to eat them in moderation.
Sunflower seeds seem to be a danger for the dental enamel. This can be explained quite simply because the damage caused to the seeds is linked to an intense mechanical effect on the teeth.
Through this channel, regular exposure to the shell contributes to the formation of cracks and intensive destruction of dental tissue, creating conditions for the development of cavities.
Well, the consumption of sunflower seeds does not reveal its good sides: the proof is that it has undesirable effects on the human body.
But what about contraindications?
Well, first of all, let’s talk about urinary stones. Indeed, some people may be recommended a diet limited in oxalates (a component naturally present in certain foods) in order to prevent the recurrence of kidney or urinary stones.
In any case, it is preferable for these people to avoid eating sunflower seeds (rich in oxalates).
Then the sunflower seed is part of the foods likely to generate an oral allergy syndrome.
Let’s explain if you will. Basically, the syndrome is an allergic reaction (in this case) to certain proteins in a range of fruits, vegetables and nuts.
It affects individuals with allergies to birch pollen and is almost always preceded by hay fever.
Thus, if people allergic to birch pollen consume raw sunflower seeds, an immune response may occur.
Local symptoms limited to the mouth, lips and throat such as itching and burning may occur and usually disappear within a few minutes.
In this case, it is appropriate to contact an allergist to assess whether precautions should be taken in this regard.
We are not asking you to stop consuming sunflower seeds but just to take them according to your body’s needs.
What about sunflower seeds allergy?
On the other hand, it is strongly advised to all those who have any kind of allergy to sunflower to refrain from eating it. It is only for their own good!
Finally, as for the undesirable effects, cadmium can accumulate in the body and cause lung or kidney damage.
To compensate for this, it is recommended to aim for a moderate intake of nuts and various seeds to effectively counteract this.
3. Drug interactions
What are the interactions of sunflower seeds with drugs?
According to science, this interaction is moderate.
For example, sunflower seeds when changed into oil can raise blood sugar levels. Diabetes medications are used to lower blood sugar.
Therefore, taking sunflower oil interferes with the action of anti-diabetic drugs, some of which contain glimepiride, glyburide, insulin, pioglitazone, rosiglitazone, chloropropamide, glipizide, tolbutamide.
Why not take sunflower oil?
But it will be necessary to follow the relevant prescriptions of your pharmacist or doctor in order not to harm the supposed activity of the drugs.
II- Nutritional values of 50 g of sunflower seeds
Sunflower seeds have the following composition if we consider 50 g in a portion:
- Protein 60.6 kcal/10.1 g
- Fat 355.725 kcal/26.35 g
- Carbohydrates 45 kcal/7.5 g
- Water 0.75 g
- Fiber 4.8 g
- Vitamin E 23.925 mg
- Vitamin B6 0.93 mg
- Calcium 70.725 mg
- Potassium 466.5 mg
- Iron 3.675 mg
- Manganese 1.463 mg
III- Calories and composition of sunflower seeds (50g)
Regarding the calories, we find in 50 g of sunflower seeds :
- 292.469 kcal when raw
- 295 935.5 kcal when roasted
- 449.489 kcal when served as oil
- For kozinaki sunflower seed, the calorie content is 288,557 kcal
- While that of the sunflower halva is 263,232 kcal
Sunflower seeds are composed in practice:
- 3.0445 mg of iron
- 2.495 mg of zinc
- 26.442 mg of selenium
- And 0.973 mg of manganese
To know :
- 183.4 mg of calcium
- 264.939 mg of phosphorus
- 79.908 mg of sodium
- 158.309 mg of magnesium
- 323,455 mg of potassium
IV- How to eat sunflower seeds?
Eating sunflower seeds is easy. You don’t have to be a chef in a five-star restaurant to know how to use them!
It’s not rocket science and all you need is creativity.
For example, you can use sunflower seeds as a garnish for your mixed salads, whether it’s fruit or vegetables or even a mix of both.
Due to its salty flavor, once roasted, the sunflower seed will bring out the full potential of each element of your salads.
Need a cool drink for summer?
No problem, just have a few sunflower seeds with you to mix into your homemade granita or fruit juice.
The technique to have it as delicious in all these beautiful drinks is to roast it or to put it in the Blender with all your fruits.
Try it and see how many new flavors you can come across.
Evening snack break and you feel like a chocolate bar for a pick-me-up?
No need, just eat sunflower seeds as a snack but in moderation to boost your performance.
The main thing is that they must be roasted to get all their virtuous properties.
What about an appetizer or pastries?
No problem, since sunflower seeds go perfectly with aperitifs and especially with a good dose of rum.
And if you are thinking about pastries, don’t hesitate to crush (grind) the sunflower seeds to a powder and add them to your various pastry doughs.
Even with spaghetti and bognolaise, it goes down quite easily and remains rich in taste.
The most important thing is to wash and dry the sunflower seeds in the sun to be able to enjoy them.
V- Benefits of sunflower seeds
Sunflower seeds are rich in properties that are useful enough for the body.
Well, already the regular but moderate consumption of sunflower seeds helps to prevent vitamin deficiencies.
Then, the sunflower seeds’ kernels contain fibers that are necessary for the normal functioning of the digestive system, thus allowing to relieve the colon and also to eliminate harmful substances from the body.
As a result, the compounds present in sunflower seeds help fight impotence in men and have a positive effect on the reproductive system in women.
In addition, sunflower seeds contain phytosterols and other compounds that help eliminate bad cholesterol (LDL) and excess cholesterol in the body.
Thus, taking them regularly reduces the risk of cholesterol deposits in the blood vessel walls.
In addition, the calcium and other minerals present in raw sunflower seeds help strengthen bone tissue and accelerate the healing process of wounds and fractures.
Sunflower seeds are a natural source of iron and other compounds that positively affect the function of hemoglobin and blood plasma cells.
Rich in vitamin E, sunflower seeds remain a powerful natural antioxidant that protects cells from the action of free radicals, slows aging and is responsible for the health of mucous membranes and skin. Ideal therefore for body care.
Finally, in addition to vitamins, other beneficial elements included in the composition of sunflower seeds have a positive effect on the nervous system, help to cope with neuroses, depressive states, sudden mood swings and especially reduce the negative effects of stress on the body.
VI- How much sunflower seeds per day
The amount of sunflower seeds one can take daily depends on one’s physical constitution, age, sex and general health.
But the recommended amount should be between 15 g to 30 g per day. And this with a break of a few days from time to time.
It should be noted that taking more than the recommended amount is generally without consequence for our health.