seeds can be found either as in-shell or shelled as sunflower seed kernels
or meats. They may be consumed raw or roasted and salted, toasted, baked,
etc. as a snack. Anyway you prefer sunflower seeds, they are a delicious
snack food, well-suited to a healthy diet and nutrition.
It is well known that sunflower seeds are one of the most
nutritious (containing almost every vitamin except vitamin C) and healthy
foods to be found in the dried fruits sector. This is due to their high
content of unsaturated fatty acids. Analysis data indicate that from the
total acids about 70% are polyunsaturated, 20% monounsaturated and only
10% saturated. It should be noted here that unsaturated fatty acids are
beneficial to the human organism and essential for proper nutrition.
Sunflower seeds do not contain any cholesterol at all.
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of the Amazing Sunflower
story of sunflower (Helianthus Annuus) is indeed amazing. The wild
sunflower is native to North America but commercialization of the plant
took place in Russia. It was only recently that the sunflower plant
returned to North America to become a cultivated crop. But it was the
American Indian who first domesticated the plant into a single headed
plant with a variety of seed colors including black, white, red, and
was a common crop among American Indian tribes throughout North America.
Evidence suggests that the plant was cultivated by Indians in present-day
Arizona and New Mexico about 3000 BC. Some archaeologists suggest that
sunflower may have been domesticated before corn. Sunflower was used in
many ways throughout the various Indian tribes. Seed was ground or pounded
into flour for cakes, mush or bread. Some tribes mixed the meal with other
vegetables such as beans, squash, and corn. The seed was also cracked and
eaten for a snack. There are references of squeezing the oil from the seed
and using the oil in making bread.
Non-food uses include purple dye for textiles, body painting and other
decorations. Parts of the plant were used medicinally ranging from
snakebite to other body ointments. The oil of the seed was used on the
skin and hair. The dried stalk was used as a building material. The plant
and the seeds were widely used in ceremonies.