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Are Seeds High In Zinc? [Chia, Sunflower, Plus]

Are Seeds High In Zinc

Zinc (Zn) is an essential trace mineral that is needed for our bodies to stay healthy.

The only trace mineral in higher concentration in our bodies is Iron (Fe).

Some seeds like hemp, sesame, pumpkin, squash, chia, and cottonseed are significant sources of Zinc.

In addition, they are excellent sources of fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants.

Here is the Zinc content of some seeds per 100g portion.

Name Zinc content
Hemp seeds 10mg
Sesame seeds 8mg
Pumpkin seeds 7mg
Squash seeds 7mg
Cottonseed 6mg
Chia seeds 5mg
Sunflower seeds 5mg
Safflower seeds 5mg
Flaxseed 4mg
Lotus seeds 1mg
Breadfruit seeds 1mg

(Source)

Zinc is found in the cells of our bodies and is vital to our health.

It is a crucial part of our immune system and is used in fighting viruses and bacteria.

It also breaks down carbohydrates, makes DNA and proteins, heals wounds, and promotes healthy cellular growth.

In addition, Zinc enhances the function of insulin.

Insulin is the hormone located in the pancreas responsible for transporting glucose in the blood to the cells.

A lack of insulin is one of the leading causes of diabetes.

In addition to seeds, other sources of food with high Zinc content are:

– oysters

– red meat

– poultry

– beans

– nuts

– dairy products

– some types of seafood like lobsters and crabs

– grains

The recommended daily intake of Zinc is 11mg for males and 8mg for females.

Since we cannot store Zinc in our bodies, we should consume it daily.

Bioavailability is the ability of the substance or compound to be absorbed and used by our bodies.

The bioavailability of zinc from a vegetarian or vegan diet is lower than that from a non-vegetarian diet since meat is high in bioavailable zinc.

In addition, vegetarians and vegans typically eat high amounts of seeds, legumes, and whole grains.

These foods contain phytates that reduce the uptake of Zinc.

Phytate or phytic acid is how plants store phosphorus.

It is commonly found in bran and seeds.

It binds to minerals, metals, or proteins, making it more difficult for the body to access them.

Phytate is sometimes called an anti-nutrient because it inhibits the absorption of nutrients and minerals.

Vegans and vegetarians might require up to 50% more of the recommended daily intake of Zinc than carnivores due to their diet’s high phytic acid content.

You can reduce the phytate level of seeds by sprouting them.

The process of soaking and sprouting the seeds will cause phosphorus to be delivered to the baby plant, reducing phytates.

In addition, fermentation or baking the seeds into bread using yeast can activate enzymes in the phytic acid, reducing the amount of phytate.

Can Seeds Have Vitamin K?

Can Seeds Have Vitamin K

Yes, some seeds like pumpkin, squash, and flaxseed contain small amounts of vitamin K.

The seeds containing vitamin K per 100g are:

Pumpkin seed 7.3µg
Squash seed 7.3µg
Flaxseed 4.3µg

(Source)

Vitamin K content in these seeds is shown in micrograms (µg) per 100gram.

A microgram is a million times smaller than a gram and a thousand times smaller than a milligram.

The recommended intake of vitamin K per day for adults is about 1 microgram per kilo of the body weight.

Vegetables and legumes are more common sources of vitamin K.

For example, spinach contains 483 µg per 100 gram, kale has 817 µg per 100 gram, and broccoli has 141 µg per 100 gram.

Vitamin K is used by our bodies to clot blood, stop bleeding, and close wounds.

It is also known that vitamin K contributes to overall bone density and health.

Vitamin K deficiency is uncommon in adults but can lead to serious problems like internal bleeding and bones that break easily.

Symptoms of a vitamin K deficiency include easy bruising, red or purple dots caused by broken blood vessels, and cartilage calcification.

Vitamin K is stored in our livers and does not have to be part of our daily diets.

What Seeds Are High In Protein?

What Seeds Are High In Protein

Hemp seeds have an extremely high protein content, followed by pumpkin and squash seeds.

These three seeds are also complete protein sources.

Type Of Seed Protein Content Complete Protein?
Hemp seeds 31.6g Yes
Pumpkin seeds 30.2g Yes
Squash seeds 30.2g Yes
Sunflower seeds 20.8g Yes
Flaxseeds 18.3g No
Sesame seeds 17.7g No
Chia seeds 16.5g Yes

(Source)

Our bodies use proteins for growing and repairing muscles, tissues, and cells.

It is necessary to consume enough protein to help our bodies heal.

Protein is not stored in our bodies and will have to be consumed daily.

The amount of protein your body needs depends on various factors, like gender, age, weight, and overall health.

According to the Dietary Reference Intake report, an average adult should consume 0.8g of protein per kilogram of body weight.

An average man with a sedentary lifestyle should eat about 56g per day, while the average woman should eat about 46g.

Amino acids are the building blocks of protein.

They are about 20 different amino acids in the human body.

Our bodies combine these amino acids in different ways to make new proteins like tissue, bone, hormones, and enzymes.

Our bodies can make the 11 non-essential amino acids but cannot make the nine essential amino acids.

They have to be added to our diets.

The nine essential amino acids are:

  • Histidine
  • Isoleucine
  • Leucine
  • Lysine
  • Methionine
  • Phenylalanine
  • Threonine
  • Tryptophan
  • valine

Are Seeds Ok For Nut Allergy?

Are Seeds Ok For Nut Allergy

Yes, there is no correlation between nut allergy and seed allergy.

Nuts contain different types of proteins than seeds.

However, if you have a nut allergy, that does not mean you don’t have a seed allergy as well.

Our body’s immune system protects us by manufacturing unique proteins called antibodies.

These antibodies send signals to our immune system if they detect a threat like a virus or bacteria.

The immune system then releases chemicals to fight the foreign invaders.

Food allergies happen when the antibodies wrongly identify a harmless protein as a threat and tell the immune system to release chemicals to kill it.

This results in an allergic reaction that can range from mild to severe.

About 32 million people in the US have food allergies.

A study in 2017 shows that 2.5% of the kids in the US may suffer from peanut allergies, while nut allergies affect 0.5% to 1% of adults.

Symptoms of nut allergies can include:

  • Itchy throat, mouth, eyes
  • Itchy skin
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Nausea
  • Shortness of breath
  • Stomach ache, diarrhea, and cramps

Severe allergic reactions include difficulty breathing, anaphylaxis, impaired breathing, and shock.

Peanut allergies can be more severe and may include:

  • Weakened pulse
  • Hives
  • Pale or bluish skin
  • Swelling of lips and tongue
  • Confusion and dizziness
  • Repetitive cough
  • Hoarse voice
  • Swelling in the throat

If you suspect you are allergic, be careful with all the ingredients in your food.

Nut allergies can be severe and even fatal.

Always check with your medical practitioner if in doubt.

The treatment for a severe allergic reaction is an epinephrine injection and must be administered immediately.

There is a treatment for mitigating peanut allergy in children, approved in early 2020.

A seed allergy is rarer than a nut allergy. Only 0.1% of the world’s population is believed to be allergic to sesame seeds.