If you enjoy peanut butter but are looking for a healthier alternative, you can find lots of options out there. In a previous article, we’ve listed the best alternatives to peanut butter, and one of those is sunflower seed butter. It is made the same way as peanut butter, but sunflower seeds are used instead of peanuts. It is usually thicker compared to peanut butter. That’s why most people add in some organic sunflower oil to make it smoother and more spreadable.
Like most nuts and seeds, sunflower seeds are also packed with nutritional benefits and healthy fats. Sunflower seed butter is also a great alternative if you have a nut or peanut allergy. It is a bit inexpensive, making it a healthier and more affordable option. If you are wondering about the health benefits that you can get from it, you’re in the right place.
Health Benefits of Sunflower Seed Butter
1. High in Protein
Peanut butter is the top choice when it comes to portable, high-protein pre- and post-gym snacks. However, sunflower seed butter is also a good option. It’s because one serving of it contains about 3 grams of protein, which is a great size for a snack, especially when paired with carbs.
Since sunflower seed butter is high in protein, there are lots of benefits that you can get from it. These include strengthening muscles and good metabolism to help you lose weight more quickly.
2. Rich in Vitamin E
The body’s favorite antioxidant is vitamin E, as it naturally helps balance cholesterol. In addition to that, vitamin E also reduces free radical damage, which slows down again in the body and reduces all cell damage. This is why a lot of beauty products out there contain vitamin E.
This vitamin can also help increase immunity, helping the body fight off infections and diseases. You don’t have to spend a lot of money on expensive beauty products and supplements to get vitamin E. Incorporating sunflower seed butter into your diet is enough. In fact, just a tablespoon of it on a toast or eating it along with fruits can give you 24% of the body’s daily needs. You can also get the same benefits if you use peanut oil.
3. High in Magnesium
Magnesium is one of the most important minerals in the body. However, many people have some form of magnesium deficiency, which has serious health effects. This is because magnesium is important in keeping the body’s energy high. It also helps relieve muscle spasms and helps people get deep and quality sleep at night. Snacking on sunflower seed butter can give your 15% of what the body needs in a day. That is not bad for just one tablespoon.
4. Full of Healthy Fats
Many people are not into sunflower seed butter because it contains high fat. However, that is a mistake because the fats that it contains are healthy fats. Keep in mind that our bodies need fat. When you feed your body with healthy fats, you provide it with the tools it needs to carry vitamins throughout your body, helping it absorb the nutrients from foods and give you glowing skin. Sunflower seed butter is high in good fat. It comprises mainly unsaturated fats, which help lower cholesterol and reduce inflammation.
5. Highly Unprocessed
Depending on what brand you choose, peanut butter and other nut butter are usually made of ingredients that are unnecessary and a bit scary, such as hydrogenated oils and sugars. But unlike those, sunflower seed butter is a highly unprocessed product. In addition to that, you also have the option to make some at home if you own a food processor. This way, you can make it according to your tastes and what you will be using it for.
6. Reduces Cholesterol
Sunflower seeds decrease levels of LDL cholesterol in the blood, thanks to their fiber content. Sunflower seeds also lower the chances of the risk of a heart attack because of the niacin or vitamin B3, while vitamin B5 or pantothenic acid in the sunflower seed butter increases HDL cholesterol and reduces total serum cholesterol levels.
7. Reduces Chances of Cancer
Sunflower seed butter prevents chances of breast cancer as it contains Beta-sitosterol, a phytosterol that prevents the growth of tumor cells, decreases its size, and even prevents metastasis. Sunflower seeds are rich in antioxidants, which also help reduce the chances of cancer.
8. Boosts Brain Function
Sunflower seeds butter contains vitamin B6, which improves mood, concentration, and enhances memory. It also releases serotonin and epinephrine in our body, which helps relieve mood and stress and gives your mind a rush and a burst of happiness. Sunflower seed butter also helps the symptoms of premenstrual syndrome.
9. Rich in Iron
Sunflower seed butter is an excellent source of iron. Consuming this butter helps people with anemia. Since anemia causes hair loss by combating anemia with iron, sunflower seeds butter also combats the hair loss and stops it.
10. Helpful During Pregnancy
Sunflower seed butter contains vitamin E, which is known to be very beneficial to prenatal health. Vitamin E helps with the development of a healthy baby in the womb. Therefore, sunflower seeds butter is a beneficial source of nutrition for both the mother and the child in her womb. In addition to that, the sunflower seed butter helps with scars of stretch marks because it contains oleic and linoleic acids. It speeds up the process of healing wounds and prevents the formation of scar tissue.
Risks of Eating Sunflower Seed Butter
Just like other foods, there are a few risks when it comes to consuming sunflower seed butter. While it poses no dangers, there are two things you need to know. First, even though it is full of healthy fats, it comes at a caloric price. Therefore, you need to be mindful of the serving sizes when using them. One tablespoon is equal to one serving. If you add two more tablespoons, you are looking at around 200 extra calories.
Another thing that you need to remember is that sunflower seed butter is rich in omega-6 fatty acids. However, the body also needs omega-3 fatty acids to maintain the balance between the fatty acids that the body needs. Therefore, when eating sunflower seed butter, try to add in some flaxseed or use macadamia nut oil, as these can help increase those omega-3s.
Sunflower seed butter is a good alternative to peanut butter, whether due to allergies or personal preference. It is easy to make and very easy to incorporate into your diet. You can use it as a spread on toast and sandwiches or replace other condiments like mayonnaise. You can also mix it up with some fresh veggies to make yourself a healthy sandwich for lunch.
There are endless possibilities when it comes to using sunflower seed butter. Just open the following link if you want to know more about the different types of butter and their respective benefits. We hope that this helped you learn more about the benefits of sunflower seed butter.