The Health Benefits of Popular Seeds
From chia seeds to flaxseeds, these little wonders are a great nutritional boost.
Planting the Seed
“Convince me you have a seed there,” Henry David Thoreau wrote, “and I am prepared to expect wonders.” The famed naturalist of Walden Pond was referring to the power of a seed to build a forest. Little did he know that his thoughts apply to the outsize talent of seeds for nourishing humans, too. Inside a seed’s hard coating is an entire embryonic plant, surrounded by all the food that it needs to thrive once it gets dispersed into the soil. Incorporate seeds into your diet, not occasionally but consistently, and you’ll reap the benefits of all those nutrients, making seeds well worth the calories. The seeds here are among the healthiest. Most will stay fresh for up to a year when stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Consider them worthy alternatives to the nuts that are commonly enjoyed. (Nuts, in fact, are shelled fruits that contain seeds.) All contain omega-3 fatty acids, which are associated with everything from a healthy brain and heart to supple skin. Each also boasts its own distinctive dietary offerings, along with unique flavors that transform everyday eats into food that feels special.