Pregnant? Give Sunflower Seeds a Shot!

The desire to keep yourself and your baby healthy elevates every passing time. As you wait for the big day, the health of both of you is your utmost care. You should take proper care of your nutrition because what you eat will give the life inside you a great start. There are many ways out there to ensure nourishment for you and your baby. Consuming seeds during pregnancy is one of these. It is considered one of the best ways to stay fit while you are pregnant. This is because seeds do not contain too many calories. One of the healthiest seeds to include in your list is sunflower seeds. It is induced with essential nutrients that are necessary for your pregnancy. 

Cool facts about sunflower seeds

Sunflower seeds are the gift from the glorious plant sunflower. Helianthus annuus is the Latin scientific name of sunflower. This is derived from its radiating appearance. Helios is the Greek word for the sun while anthos is for flower. The seeds are in grayish-green and sometimes black which are enclosed in a tear-dropped shaped black or gray shells. These shells frequently featured in black and white stripes. An enormous number of 1,000 to 2,000 seeds are contained in one sunflower. Sunflower seeds are firm and have a mild nutty taste but its texture is tender. 

Benefits of consuming sunflower seeds during pregnancy

100 grams of sunflower seeds has a total of 584 calories, with 20.79 g of protein, up to 50% percent of a woman’s recommended daily intake of protein, and many values of different minerals as well as vitamins. There is no doubt that sunflower seeds do assist you a lot during pregnancy, and below are the immense benefits of this nutty seeds.

  • Sunflower seeds provide a big amount of folate and selenium, two important nutrients that every mom to be should supply themselves with.
  • Sunflower seeds contain a large amount of vitamin E. First, it neutralizes free radicals that could damage brain cells and good cholesterol. Second, it helps with hot flashes. Lastly, an ounce of sunflower seeds will give you up to 49% of the daily intake of this vitamin.
  • Sunflower seeds are filled with minerals. These minerals are: phosphorus and calcium for the formation of the skeletal system of your baby and aid healthy bone development as well as prevent osteoporosis. Copper for enhancing elasticity and making the joints strong and flexible. Iron for supplying red blood cells.
  • Reduce cholesterol levels and lessen the production of bad cholesterol. Phytosterols in sunflower seeds have chemical nature that can delay cholesterols in going to blood. Lower high blood pressure level by regulating sodium balance, with the help of potassium. Sunflower seeds and hemp seeds are known for their high potassium content. Keep the blood sugar level under control, all thanks to the high amount of magnesium in the sunflower seeds.
Read also: How to be safe and comfortable with your growing pregnant belly
  • Help in constipation with the help of fiber. Moreover, fiber also helps to clean and detoxify the digestive system and ensures smooth digestion.
  • Beat depression, anxiety and mood disorders. Sunflower seeds are famous for the niacin contained just like sesame seeds, a vitamin that accelerates the GABA activity in the brain cells and therefore helps to relieve anxiety as well as depression. Magnesium in these seeds also aids in correcting mood disorders and reduce depression too.
  • It boosts your immune system which is undeniably weakened during pregnancy and as well as to increase the ability of the body to accept the growing fetus with the help of what they call phytochemicals.
  • Improve the appetite, remove the heartburn, and remove muscle fatigue.
  • Rescue you from the morning sickness, nausea, and other symptoms of toxemia.
  • Play a key role in the regulation of acid-base balance, as well as prevent you from heart, liver and bile duct diseases.

Different ways to eat sunflower seeds during pregnancy

  • Mix the seeds with your homemade granola bar.
  • Add it to your regular salad and top it off with other nuts as well.
  • Mix it with other nuts and dried fruit and eat them with plain yogurt
  • Roast the seeds and add them to your cakes and muffins.
  • Enjoy it in the simple roasted way.
  • Make a paste out of the seeds and use it as a spread.
  • Make a dressing out of it and use it over your salad
  • Grind the seeds into powder and blend with your favorite pancake or early morning oatmeal.

Possible side effects of sunflower seeds

Just like any food, sunflower seeds do have some precautions that you need to watch out. Check out the list below and if you fall into any category, make sure to consult a doctor before consuming them.

  • If you accidentally swallow sunflower husk, it can cause digestive disorders, problems with the gastrointestinal tract, or inflammation of the appendix. If you already have stomatological problems, then it is best to consider carefully before use.
  • Remember we have stated that moderation is the key. Too many sunflower seeds (more than 100g a day) every day can:
  • Phosphorus toxicity and therefore result in kidney damage or non-skeletal issues.
  • Skin outbreaks as well as make your hair and nails brittle.

We suggest you not to eat them every day, and if you overeat then don’t consume those seeds within the next few days.

  1. There is a chance that you might suffer from selenium toxicity that leads to selenosis. Irritability and fatigued body are two common symptoms.
  2. While pregnant, your teeth are extremely vulnerable and the enamel is thinner than ever. That is why if you have problems with teeth previously, nibbling sunflower seeds often is a bad idea. Instead, you can buy hulled seeds.
  3. If you are prone to allergies or are allergic to sunflower seeds, avoid them immediately.

There are indeed numerous benefits that a pregnant woman can obtain from eating sunflower seeds. Aside from its scrumptious taste, your baby will definitely bounce upon delivery. However, as we always say do not overeat. Moderation is one of the keys to a healthy pregnancy. Seek the advice of your doctor first if you can consume sunflower seeds daily. If you did not get a red signal from him then you are good to go!

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