#snackhappy with seeds
Packed full of healthy fats, vitamins and minerals, seeds are perfect for sprinkling over salads and cereals, but they also make a fantastic snack choice in their own right. Get #snackhappy with these simple yet scrumptious ideas…
Best for: stabilising blood sugar
Chia seeds are rich in omega-3s and magnesium, and contain a soluble fibre that slows the release of sugars into the blood. A study in Diabetes Care found they improved heart disease risk factors in type 2 diabetes.
Make: Chia Lemonade (Serves 1; 82 calories per serving)
- 4 tbsp lemon juice
- 180ml still water
- Stevia, to taste
- 1 tbsp chia seeds
Mix the juice and water; add stevia, to taste. Stir in seeds; chill for 10 mins. Mix again and enjoy!
Best for: menstrual problems
A serving supplies a sixth of the daily recommended allowance of magnesium, which studies suggest eases PMS, and a seventh of your iron needs.
Make: Hemp Houmous (Serves 4; 134 calories per serving)
- 4 tbsp ground hemp seeds
- 1 can chickpeas, drained
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 clove garlic
- ½ tsp cumin
Blend all ingredients in a processor. Then add water in a thin stream, till the mix is smooth and creamy.
Best for: joints
Flaxseeds are high in anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids that help ease conditions like arthritis. Couple with coconut water to raise your levels of blood pressure-regulating potassium. A glass has one tenth of your daily quota of zinc.
Make: Fruity Flax Smoothie (Serves 2; 220 calories per serving)
- 1 ripe mango
- Big handful of mint
- 1 banana
- 4 tbsp milled flaxseeds
- Coconut water
Put the solid and dry ingredients in a blender; add enough coconut water to cover. Whizz!
Best for: heart health
Sunflower seeds are a rich source of vitamin E, which helps prevent arteries becoming cholesterol-clogged.
Make: Spicy Toasted Sunflower Seeds (Makes 15 tbsp; 60 calories per tbsp)
- 150g sunflower seeds
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tsp agave syrup
- ½ tsp chili powder
- ½ tsp paprika
- 1 tsp olive oil
Mix all ingredients together. Spread in a single layer over a non-stick baking tray. Bake at 150°C/130°C fan/gas mark 2 for 30-40 mins.
Best for: high cholesterol
Pumpkin seeds are rich in beta-sitosterol, a compound that can help lower cholesterol. It can also help with prostate problems in older men.
Make: Pumpkin Seed Pesto (Serves 6; 208 calories per serving)
- 4 tbsp pumpkin seeds
- 30g fresh coriander
- 4 tbsp grated parmesan cheese
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 chilli, deseeded
- 6 tbsp olive oil
Blend the seeds until coarsely chopped. Add all the other ingredients and process till smooth.