The benefit of consuming sesame seeds can be seen in the multitude of long-term and short-term advantages it offers. It contains some unique compounds that positively impact health, which is a property that cannot be found in many other seeds. Overall, it facilitates digestion, improves skin and hair health, reduces hypertension, reduces inflammation, prevents cancer and bone diseases, controls diabetes, improves oral health, and improves metabolism.
Sesame seeds are derived from the sesame plant, whichis one of the oldest oilseed plants in the world. It is extremely resilient and can be grown in a variety of climatic conditions.The seeds are very small in size, about 2 mm wide and 3-4 mm long.They are ensconced within small pods that line the plant’s axes. Originally, they were native to India and parts of Africa, although many other countries are now cultivating them as well.Although it is an oily seed, the fat content in it is largely the healthy variety, which is why it is one of the healthier cooking oils used across the globe. Sesame seeds can be purchased unshelled or shelled.
Sesame seeds are highly nutritional as only 100 grams of these seeds can contain up to 573 kcal of energy. Additionally, they also contain almost 50 grams of fat, of which approximately 85% are healthy fats. These seeds also contain an abundance of vitamin B6, thiamine, and niacin among vitamins, and calcium, copper, magnesium, iron, and phosphorus among minerals.
It’s hard to comprehend, but these little seeds contain an impressive amount of fiber. Fiber is crucial to healthy digestion as it bulks up waste matter and then helps it move smoothly through the large intestine. In this way, fiber prevents the chances of a bowel obstruction. Moreover, it stimulates peristaltic movement, which is characteristic of the small intestine as it is processing food. Consuming sesame seeds have been directly related to the reduction of gastrointestinal problems like constipation or diarrhea. It also keeps the colon healthy and reduces the chances of developing serious gastrointestinal issues and cancer.
Optimum metabolism is key for overall health. It keeps the body strong and gives high levels of energy that can be used externally to perform work and internally for cellular function. In addition, it increases mobility and activity, and promotes cellular growth. Sesame seeds enable as they are high in fiber. Further, they are also rich in proteins which are broken down inside the body, and the components are reused in multiple bodily functions.
The high fiber content of sesame seeds is also good for the heart. It works to reduce levels of bad cholesterol in arteries and blood vessels. Therefore, it prevents conditions like heart attacks, stroke, and atherosclerosis.
Many studies have shown that magnesium can have a positive effect in controlling the symptoms of diabetes. As diabetes is a lifestyle, patients who deal with it form a healthier dietary routine to help them combat the disease. A moderate intake of sesame seeds on a day-to-day basis can go a long way in helping diabetics, without having to do too much. The fatty acids present in the seed, and the extract of the seed, can facilitate better functioning of the medication prescribed to diabetics, including glibenclamide. This is specifically true for those who suffer from type 2 diabetes. It makes the drug more effective in the body, and it also regulates insulin and glucose in the blood.
Copper rich sesame seeds are a wonder food in combatting a number of diseases with symptoms of inflammation, for instance arthritis. Moreover, the copper content of sesame seeds is also essential for strengthening the walls of the blood vessels, as thinner walls have a higher chance of rupturing. It strengthens bones and joints as well. Another benefit of consuming the copper in sesame seeds is that it increases the uptake of iron, which is not an easy mineral to consume. As iron is the main component in hemoglobin and a lack of iron in the body can cause anemia, copper is essential to keeping anemia and other related conditions at bay. It ensures that the body’s circulation is working at its optimum and all organs receiveoptimum amounts of oxygen.
Sesame seeds contain an impressive amount of essential minerals such as phosphorous, zinc, and calcium. While it is commonly known that calcium is essential for bone growth and for maintaining bone density, the effects of zinc and phosphorous are not to be ignored in this matter. Consuming moderate amounts of sesame seeds every day can prevent the body from developing deficiencies that impact bone health. Furthermore, sesame seeds are a dietary recommendation for people who are already suffering from bone diseases. These seeds repair bones that could have been weakened by the onset of debilitating conditions such as osteoporosis or by bone injury. In addition, they also strengthen the bone and can facilitate the creation of new bone matter. Overall, it is the perfect antidote to weak bones.
Hypertension is one of the biggest symptoms of ill-health in today’s day. The number of cases of hypertension have increased over the last two decades, and this growth has been attributed to the lifestyle we now lead, which includes a huge change in the way we consume food. Consuming sesame seeds are an organic way to combat hypertension. The natural oils and fatty acids in the seeds prevent the development of several cardiac conditions. In addition, these seeds are rich in magnesium, which is a known vasodilator, which means that it reduces blood pressure. In one moderate serving, sesame seeds can provide up to 25% of the recommended intake of magnesium.
Sesame seeds have been closely linked to a reduction in the risk of developing cancer because this seed is rich in a wide variety of vitamins and minerals. As mentioned earlier, sesame seeds are rich in magnesium, and therefore have strong anti-carcinogenic properties. Further, these seeds also contain phytate. This compound is rare but powerful, in that it acts as an antioxidant. It minimizes the effects of free radicals, i.e. the unhealthy and potentially dangerous byproducts of metabolism, in the body. Higher amounts of free radicals not only cause cancers like leukemia, colon, prostate, breast, lung, and pancreatic cancer, they also cause premature aging, heart conditions, and cognitive dysfunction. Therefore, consuming sesame seeds can prevent these conditions from developing and affecting the body.
One of the more unique benefits of consuming sesame seeds regularly is that it protects the organs from the harmful effects of radiation, as it contains a compound called sesamol. Sources of radiation are many, including but not limited to, exposure to radiation in chemotherapy or radiotherapy. Radiation can result in cell mutation, which can cause many degenerative diseases. The sesamol content protects the DNA, provides strength to the body, and prevents the development of other forms of cancer due to cell mutation.
Zinc is a crucial component in the formation of collagen, a compound that strengthens and vitalizes skin, hair, and muscle tissue. What better way to incorporate zinc in your diet than to eat a zinc-rich food like sesame seeds. In fact, the effects of zinc in sesame is so acute that it has been known to reduce the appearance of marks such as burns, on the skin. It also keeps the skin looking young and fresh, and prevents premature signs of aging showing on visible parts of the body, such as the face.
One of the most notable effects of consuming sesame seeds is the betterment of oral health. Although sesame oil is better, sesame seeds can do the trick too. The fatty acids in sesame seeds, when broken down and released in the mouth through chewing, can have impressive astringent and antibacterial effects. One of the most common bacteria that can negatively impact oral health is known as streptococcus. Consuming sesame seeds has been directly associated with reducing the presence of that bacteria in the mouth.
The sesame seed is so versatile that its presence is prominent in culinary experiences across the globe, right from the United States to Japan on the far side of the world. They have a mild, nutty flavor and are used to add taste and texture in many recipes. They can be consumed raw, but the wider application is to roast it and add it as garnishing.More often than not, they are used in salads and as toppings on bread. However, there are many seafood recipes, especially in Southeast Asian cooking, where the sesame seed is used prominently.
Like everything else, sesame seeds should also be consumed in moderation. Excessive consumption can cause bowel and colon irritation, which is in fact the opposite of what sesame seeds are ideally supposed to do for the human body. Further, due to the presence of THC, they can also show up in drug tests. However, this too is dependent on the amount that is consumed. Moderate consumption can prevent both these things from happening.
Sesame plants were originally grown in India and some parts of Africa, where their seeds were primarily used for extracting oil. This oil was then used in cooking, and is still one of the healthiest oil variants in the world. Archaeological evidence shows that sesame seeds were a traded commodity between the Indian sub-continent and Mesopotamia even as far back in history as 2000 BC.