Sunflower seeds can be eaten in just about any way that you can imagine. You can add them to your salads, stir-fries and baked goods such as cookies and muffins. But sunflower seeds are also great by themselves, or with other nuts and seeds in a trail mix.
Sunflower seeds are a good source of omega-6 fatty acids, dietary fiber, vitamin E, B vitamins, vitamin D, potassium, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, selenium, calcium, and zinc. They also contain antioxidants which help to get rid of free radicals. When roasting the seeds they do lose some antioxidants and healthy fats, but nevertheless they are still good for you.
You can buy raw or roasted sunflower seeds in the shell or out of the shell. When buying them in their raw state you can roast them yourself at home for a fresher taste. You can roast either hulled or unhulled seeds, and the process is very easy.
How to Roast Un-hulled Seeds
1) Put about 2 cups of seeds (still in the shell) in a microwave safe bowl and microwave for about 90 seconds.
2) Remove and add just enough water to the seeds to make them wet (about 2 tbsp), then sprinkle on some unrefined sea salt to taste. Stir the seeds well to ensure all seeds are wet and salted.
3) Return to microwave for another 60 seconds.
4) Remove and stir.
5) Return to microwave for about 40 seconds.
6) Remove and stir. At this point taste the seeds and return again if needed for 20-30 seconds.
You may have to repeat step 6 several times depending on how roasted you like them. Just remember that sunflower seeds burn easily, and thus you have to be careful that you do not burn the seeds.
Un-hulled sunflower seeds make for a great substitution for chips and other junk foods as they are tasty and keep you occupied just like a bag of chips. But the difference is that sunflower seeds are good for you. They can help you to lose weight by cleaning your digestive tract and regulate your bowel movements.
The seeds do not contain cholesterol or any other unhealthy fats, and therefore they can help to prevent high blood pressure and heart disease. They help with the eyes, teeth, skin, hair and nails.
To obtain these benefits just make the seeds a part of your diet. All you need is about a handful each day.