Eat Your Seeds

Seeds are friggin’ cool. Way cooler than most of us in their accomplishments and overall contributions to the world. We’re in awe. These days, it’s common to hear people touting the benefits of seeds for our health. Clearly they are referring to edible seeds vs. non-edible seeds. Typically when we think of edible seeds, due to their inherent names, pumpkin or chia seeds come to mind. However, there are many other foods in this category that are great for us and packed full of vitamins.

We don’t consider seeds on a regular basis even though they are vital to our survival.  They are readily available in grocery stores and small markets across most countries, cities and towns. We should get to know them! We’re fascinated by seeds and thought we’d share a little information to help you appreciate the multitude of seeds and their health benefits.

What Are Seeds?

  • Most plants bear fruit.  Specifically, most flowering plants bear fruit.  These fruit come in many forms such as tomatoes or bananas,  or even the hard shells of nuts.  However, within that fruit are the seeds.  Bananas have seeds, tomatoes have seeds, cashews and acorns are seeds.  We live and survive off of seeds.  Even animals are fed seeds that people then eat.  Seeds are what spread and create the next generation of the plant and keep us healthy.
  • Seeds are extremely nutrient dense rich in protein, vitamin B, minerals, fat and dietary fiber.

Where Do the Seeds We Eat Come From?

  1. From Random Plants and Fruits We Don’t Think About Regularly
    • Bananas, tomatoes, strawberries
    • Flax plants give us flax seeds
    • Sesame plants give us sesame fruits, which hold the sesame seed
    • Pumpkins give us pumpkin seeds
    • Many plants give us our spice seeds, such as mustard and cardamom
  1. From Nuts
    • A nut is actually the fruit of a plant – it has a hard outer shell, with one or two seeds inside (the seeds are what we eat!)
    • The shell does not separate when the fruit is ready to eat but must be practically pried off
    • ‘Nut’, botanically, means ‘the shell does not open’
    • The seeds we commonly eat from nuts: Acorns, chestnuts, hazelnuts.
  1. From Drupes
    • A drupe is a fruit of the plant that contains a hard interior seed that may be discarded, as in the seed in peaches, or eaten as in almonds or walnuts
    • The seeds we commonly eat from drupes: Almonds, walnuts, coconuts, pecans, cashews
  1. From Peas/ Legumes
    • Legumes are actually the pods or fruit of the flowering legume plants and what w eat are eat the seeds inside of the pods
    • Higher protein content than most other plant foods
    • The seeds we commonly eat from legumes: Beans, peas, lentils, peanuts
    • *Legumes are considered by some people to be a grain
  1. From Grasses
    • Seeds from grasses such as wheat grass, are contained in the husk of the grass and separated by a process called threshing
    • The seeds we commonly eat from grasses: corn, oat, wheat, rice

There are so many ways that we can get more seeds into our diets.  The next time you cook or go shopping, show more plants and seeds some love and let them know how bad-ass they are!

Here are a few additional resources about seeds we thought were interesting if you want to learn more:

Caryn & Andrew