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 Sunflower Power!

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Number of posts : 360
Age : 26
Location : Insha`allah The Neighbor of the Prophet in paradise
Registration date : 2008-05-09

PostSubject: Sunflower Power!   Sun Jun 29, 2008 11:38 am

Sunflower Power!

Their delightful flower can be seen bobbing in many a yard and garden, but the sunflower is more than a pretty face. Its seeds are so rich in vitamins, minerals, protein, polyunsaturated fat, and fiber that you could harvest big nutrition by eating them.

Native Americans used them as a medicine to ease chest pain, decrease water retention, expel worms, improve eyesight, and provide energy. It was believed that an Indian brave could travel farther on a pouch of sunflower meal than on any other food.

Dr. John Douglas, quoted in Food and Nutrition (Rodale), says he has recommended sunflower seeds to thousands of people to help lower blood pressure, improve cardiovascular health, suppress allergic reactions, and help people quit smoking. Douglas, a specialist in internal medicine at Kaiser-Permanente Medical Center in Los Angeles, says because the seeds are high in potassium and low in sodium they act as a diuretic. Within a couple of months, patients' blood pressure can improve dramatically.

The seeds are an excellent source of the B vitamins, including the hard-to-get B6, niacin, and pantothenate. They supply vitamin E, which is crucial to circulatory health, and are loaded with calcium, iron, and fiber. Plus, fully 24 percent of the sunflower's seed is protein, a percentage comparable to beef. Unfortunately, they are also high in calories, but the fat in them is linoleic acid, a substance associated with lowered blood pressure in many studies. And they contain glycogen which acts as a sedative to calm you down.

Why not sprinkle sunflower seeds on your cereal, drop them into a salad, or have a few for snack?
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