Why You Should Add Sesame Seeds To Your Diet

Sesame seeds are economical, versatile and easy to get. Today we review the benefits backed by the science of including them in soups, salads, toasts and many more dishes.

Sesame seeds are small and rich in oil, from the Sesamum indicum plant. Without shell they have an off-white color but turn brown when they are roasted. On the other hand, there is also black sesame.

If you have no idea what kind of advantages its consumption can bring to your health, you should know that they have been used in folk medicine for thousands of years. Sesame can protect against heart disease, diabetes and arthritis by just eating a small handful per day.

15 Benefits of Sesame for Health

  • Fiber intake: Three tablespoons (30 grams) of sesame seeds without shell provide 3.5 grams of fiber, which is equivalent to 12% of the daily reference intake. Fiber favors your digestive health and, in addition, growing evidence reveals that eating at least 25 to 29 grams of fiber daily reduces the rates of cancers, strokes and heart disease by 15 to 30%.
  • Reduces cholesterol and triglycerides: Some studies suggest that eating sesame seeds regularly can help lower cholesterol and high triglycerides, which are risk factors for heart disease. Sesame seeds consist of 15% saturated fat, 41% polyunsaturated fat and 39% monounsaturated fat. They also contain two types of plant compounds: lignans and phytosterols, which can also have cholesterol lowering effects.
  • They are a nutritious source of vegetable protein: Sesame seeds supply 5 grams of protein per serving of 3 tablespoons (30 grams). It is advisable to eat them toasted and without skin to guarantee a better absorption. Remember that proteins are key to many things, from muscle building to hormonal production.
  • Lower blood pressure: Sesame seeds are rich in magnesium, which can help lower blood pressure. In addition, lignans, vitamin E and other antioxidants prevent plaque buildup in the arteries.
  • Healthier bones: Sesame seeds without shell are especially rich in nutrients vital to bone health, including calcium. Soaking, roasting or germinating sesame seeds can improve the absorption of these minerals.
  • Fight inflammation: Long-term low-level inflammation can play a key role in many chronic conditions, including obesity and cancer, as well as in heart and kidney diseases. Preliminary research existing so far suggests that sesame seeds and their oil may have anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Good source of B vitamins: Three tablespoons of sesame seeds provide high proportions of thiamine, niacin and vitamin B6, which are necessary for cell function and metabolism.
  • They help the formation of blood cells: Sesame seeds supply iron, copper and vitamin B6, essential for the formation and function of blood cells.
  • They control blood sugar: Being low in carbohydrates and high in protein and healthy fats contribute to the control of blood sugar. In addition, they contain pinoresinol, a compound that can help regulate blood sugar by inhibiting the action of the digestive enzyme maltose.
  • Rich in antioxidants: Studies in animals and humans suggest that consumption of sesame seeds may increase the total amount of antioxidant activity in the blood. The lignans in sesame seeds work as antioxidants, fighting oxidative stress, a chemical reaction that can damage your cells and increase your risk of many chronic diseases. They also contain a form of vitamin E called gamma-tocopherol, an antioxidant that protects your heart.

  • Boosts the immune system: Sesame seeds are a good source of several nutrients crucial to the immune system, including zinc, selenium, copper, iron, vitamin B6 and vitamin E
  • Calm knee pain caused by osteoarthritis: This is the most common cause of joint pain and often affects the knees. Sesame has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects that can protect your cartilage.
  • More health for your thyroid: Sesame seeds are a good source of selenium, since they provide 18% of the RDI in shellless and shellless seeds. This mineral plays a vital role in the production of thyroid hormones.
  • Helps hormonal balance during menopause Sesame seeds contain phytoestrogens, plant compounds that are especially useful when estrogen levels decrease during menopause. For example, phytoestrogens can help counteract hot flashes and other low estrogen symptoms.
  • Easy to add to your diet: You can add them to fried and grilled products, cereals such as rice - in fact, they are very common in sushi-, hummus, bread, smoothies, salads, soups, creams, yogurt, side dishes and so on. You can also use sesame seed butter, also known as tahini.