Sesame has been found to have a number of benefits apart from just adding colour, flavour and texture to your food.
Here are the top benefits of the tiny seed:
Lowers bad cholesterol
Sesame seeds are rich in oleic acid, a potent mono-unsaturated fatty acid which lowers the ‘bad cholesterol’ or LDL cholesterol in the blood and increases the level of ‘good cholesterol’ or HDL in the body. Thereby helping you maintain a healthy lipid profile. All this in turn protects you from heart disease, stroke and atherosclerosis.
Protects you from cancer
Research has found that sesame has very potent anti-cancer properties. It has been found to be effective against a number of cancers like lung cancer, colon cancer, leukaemia, prostate cancer, breast cancer and pancreatic cancer.
There have been a number of papers published on its efficacy in stopping the proliferation of blood vessels supplying the tumour, in changing the way white blood cells (or your immune system cells) are attracted to chemo attractants (substances that are attracted to cancer causing agents), in reducing the rate of infiltration of the cancer etc. All these benefits are brought about by a potent antioxidant known as sesamin.
Sesamin stops and slows down the regeneration of cancer cells and stops the production of chemicals that are linked to their survival.
Helps reduce anxiety
Rich in niacin, an essential vitamin, and sesame seeds are known to reduce anxiety. With almost 28% of the total necessary daily intake of niacin present in 100 grams of the seeds, it helps in improving the GABA (gamma-Aminobutyric acid) activity inside the brain, thereby reducing anxiety and neurosis.
Keeps your heart muscles healthy
Sesame seeds are extremely rich in essential minerals like calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc and selenium. These minerals help to regulate cardiac muscle activity making them stronger and beat at regular intervals.
Due to the zinc and calcium present in sesame seeds, they are great in preventing osteoporosis. The combination of essential minerals and vitamins help in the proper assimilation of calcium by the body, and zinc helps in preventing excessive leeching of calcium into the body.
Improves the efficacy of certain diabetes drugs
A study published by the Department of Biothechnology at the Vinayaka Missions University, Tamil Nadu, found that sesame helps to reduce blood pressure and has an anti glycaemic effect with up to 36% of reduction of the glucose levels in the blood when combined with the widely used anti-diabetic drug glibenclamide.
So for a type 2 diabetic, including sesame seeds is a great idea to fight the disease naturally.
Healthy Honey Sesame Seed Bars Recipe - Simple & Delicious
To include sesame into your daily diet, just eat them either roasted and sprinkled over your salad or cooked into your food.
Here's a "good" idea...
- 1 1/4 cup Sesame Seeds
- 1/3 cup honey
- 1/8 cup maple syrup
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon, (optional)
Prep time:10 min
Cook time:20 min
Ready in:30 min
Yields: 12 bars
- Roast the sesame seeds in a non-stick pan with 1 tsp oil until the seeds brown slightly.
- In a bowl, combine sesame seeds with honey, maple syrup and cinnamon. Use a fork to mix.
- Line and 8x8 pan with parchment paper. Spray with non-stick cooking spray. Pour and flatten the mixture into the pan.
- Bake for 20 minutes in a 325 degree oven.
- Remove from oven and let bars cool until hardened. Remove from pan and parchment paper. Cut into individual bars.
- If you want to make these healthier, try adding 1/4 cup ground flax seed to the mixture.
- Use different colors of sesame seeds if you want some cool looking bars.
- Waiting until they cool is a MUST! If you try to cut them before they are cool, you'll end up with a sticky mess. They won't cut into bars properly until cooled.
Article published in http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3258208/
Sesame seed bars recipe: http://ritsukakunx.hubpages.com/hub/Healthy-Honey- Sesame-Seed-Bars-Recipe-Simple-Delicious
Sesame vinaigrette: http://thedolcedietlivinglean.com