Are you looking for a healthy and nutritious evening snack? Then look no further than the delicious sunflower seeds. This nutty tasting seed with its firm yet tender texture will take care of your hunger, while providing you with a host of nutrients.
The sunflower is an herbaceous annual plant belonging to the Asteraceae family. The botanical name of this plant is Helianthus annuus. The plant is native to the Middle American region and its leading producers are Russia, China, the USA and Argentina. The beautiful sunflower produces gray to white conical shaped seeds with a smooth surface. Each sunflower head contains hundreds of edible oil seeds.
Being on a diet is sometimes difficult and requires a lot of self control. But if we discover some delicious snack that doubles as a phenomenal health food, won’t that be amazing? If you are wondering what could be the best substitute, look no further. Pumpkin seeds are your savior.
Pumpkin seeds, also known as pepitas, are the edible kernels of pumpkin fruit. Pumpkin is a squash like gourd, which belongs to the Curcurbitaceae family. The fruit is allowed to mature completely to obtain good quality pumpkin seeds. Each fruit contains around 500 creamy white seeds. The whole seed is semi flat and has an oval shape with a conical tip.
They are cultivated as a major oil seed crop in Austria and Hungary. The seeds have a creamy flavor and are used widely in the preparation of savory dishes and snacks.
Cashew nuts commonly known as Kaju is a delicately flavored snack. It is also used as a popular ingredient in savory dishes worldwide. It is easily available and found in the local markets all year round. The nut is actually a conical shaped seed attached to the lower portion of a fruit known as cashew apple. Cashew is a close relative of pistachio, poison ivy, poison oak and mangoes.
In it’s appearance this nut is about one inch long with a smooth, curvy pointed tip. It is soft and white with a delicate creamy surface. When roasted, the nut turns golden brown in color having a buttery texture and a fruity aroma. Continue reading
Love the crunchy taste of almonds? Enjoy them in desserts or savor them alone – the fact that these delicious nuts can do wonders for your skin, hair and health gives you more than one reason to eat them! Tasty and nutritious, almonds are packed with antioxidants, Vitamin E, healthy fats and other vital nutrients.
Pistachio pastry, pistachio ice-cream, pistachio cookies, pistachio cakes! Phew! There’s a plethora of uses of this incredible nut. The low calorie content, high nutritional value and nutty flavor makes pistachio an excellent snack for both kids and adults. This delicious nut has been revered as a symbol of robust health since ancient times.
The pistachio tree belongs to the Anacaradiaceae family and is native to Syria, Greece and Western Asia. The tree is medium in size and grows to about 10 meters in height. This green colored nut comes enclosed in an egg-shaped shell. There are many varieties of pistachio, the Kerman variety being the most popular. It is grown commercially in the United States. Iran is the largest producer and exporter of pistachio. Continue reading
Buckwheat is often considered a tasty alternative to wheat. Have you heard about this pseudo-cereal? I am sure you must have, but the name would have been different. It is known as papparai in Tamil, okhla in Punjabi and kuttu in Hindi. Did you know that buckwheat is a completely gluten-free food?
It is widely consumed as flour in many parts of India during the days of fasting such as Navaratri, Janamashthami, Ekadashi, and Shivaratri. Buckwheat is used to prepare savories like kuttu ki puri or kuttu pakoras in India. This is also popularly used in Japanese and Korean cuisines for making noodles, bread, pancakes and porridge. Buckwheat flour obtained from the leaves and flowers can be used to make medicine. This pseudo-cereal is not related to wheat.
Buckwheat is packed with nutrients and good amounts of energy. The flowers of the buckwheat plant have a pleasant fragrance with rich, pungent, malty, molasses and an earthy taste. These are used for manufacturing a strongly flavored, dark brown-colored honey. Buckwheat honey is used as treacle in bakery and barbecue.
Buckwheat honey has many antioxidant compounds along with many other vitamins and minerals. This can lower the effects of free radicals that cause arthritis and cancer. Continue reading
Walnuts in chocolates, cakes, cookies, fudges, health bars… so many delicious ways to consume these crunchy and nutty walnuts!
Walnuts have a slightly bitter taste. They are widely used in most bakery products. Apart from its various culinary uses, walnut has many health, skin and hair benefits. Walnuts are best known to help you acquire glowing skin, strong hair and a healthy body. Walnut is also included in various skin care products for its rich nutritional benefits.
A delicious evening snack that can help you with weight management too? Sounds too good to be true. But it’s true! Tasty and nutritious, pine nuts can aid weight loss along with providing a plethora of health benefits for your body
Pine nuts have been a popular source of nutrition since the Paleolithic times. Crunchy and delicious, pine nuts are small seeds of the pine cone. Botanically, the tree belongs to the Pinaceae family. Pine nut is known by several names like cedar nuts, pinon nuts, pinyon nuts and pignoli. It is called chilgoza in Hindi. Chilgoza is found commonly in India, Pakistan and Afghanistan. The seeds are small and elongated, measuring one to two inches in length.
Managing cholesterol, diabetes, cardiovascular and digestive health, cancer, hot flashes, great skin and hair…. what can’t 1-2 tablespoons of daily flaxseed do for you?
Tiny but mighty, flaxseed is one of the most nutrient-dense foods. The seeds come from flax, one of the oldest crops in the world. Flaxseed was first cultivated in Babylon in 3000 BC, followed by Egypt and China. King Charlemagne believed so strongly in the health benefits of flax seeds that he passed a law to make sure his subjects ate flaxseeds. Flaxseeds belong to the Linaceae family and are botanically known as Linum usitatissimum. It is called sana bija in Hindi.
Flax Seed Benefits for Health:
The therapeutic and health benefits of flax seeds are popular around the world. The health benefits of flax seeds come from the high amounts of fiber, antioxidants and omega 3 fatty acids present in it. A tablespoon of ground flaxseeds contains 2 grams of polyunsaturated fatty acids and 2 grams of fiber with just 37 calories.
Did you know that thyme is one of the world’s healthiest foods? A delicate-looking herb with a strong fragrance, thyme can be a wonderful addition to a variety of dishes. While most of us are familiar with mint and cilantro, thyme is more popular in Europe, particularly in the Mediterranean region.
Herbs have been used for both culinary and medicinal purposes for decades. They have formed an important part of our diet and culture apart from being used in traditional medicine. A member of the mint family, thyme is widely used in Mediterranean cuisine. Its name is attributed to the presence of thymol which belongs to the naturally occurring class of compounds known as biocides. These biocides have the potential to destroy harmful organisms.
Thyme is available in several varieties of which garden thyme is the most common. In summer, it bears tiny fragrant, lilac or white-colored flowers. It has grey green leaves, a sweetly earthy flavor and a pungent minty lemon-like aroma. Another variety is lemon thyme which has a more pronounced lemony aroma.
This aromatic herb is used as an ingredient in several Mediterranean dishes ranging from vegetables and eggs to lamb, fish and pork to impart its lemony flavor and fragrant aroma. The essential oil of thyme, known as “oil of thyme”, comprises of 20 to 54% thymol.