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Nutritional Benefits Of Poppy Seeds You Didn’t Know About

Papaver smoniferum, as poppy seeds are scientifically known, has been a traditional remedy over the centuries. The flowers are of white and yellow color primarily and indigenous to the eastern Mediterranean region. The seeds of the poppy flowers are small and round, black, bluish, and light or dark gray. The colors depend on the place of cultivation. Poppy seeds have long been used to make traditional dishes across many countries and baked foods as well. The seeds and the oil extracted from them can treat coughs and headaches and cure insomnia and asthma. Below are a few popular benefits that poppy seeds offer. Check them out.

Poppy Seeds are Laden with Nutrients and Antioxidants

As with all seeds, poppy seeds contain good quantities of fiber and nutrients. From 9 grams of poppy seeds, you receive 1.6 grams of protein, 3.7 grams of fat, 2.5 grams of carbs, 1.7 grams of fiber, 46 calories, 16% of the daily value of Copper, 26% of the daily value of Manganese, 7 % of the daily value of Magnesium, 10% of the daily value of Calcium, 6% of the daily value of Zinc, 6% of the daily value of Phosphorus, 5% of the daily value of Iron, and 6% of the daily value of Thiamine. Manganese is available in optimum quantities in poppy seeds. The mineral is vital for blood clotting as well as bone health. The mineral also plays a key role in helping your body make good use of fats, carbs, and amino acids. The oil derived from poppy seeds is a great source of polyphenols. Polyphenol is an antioxidant that cuts down the risk of heart diseases.

Poppy Seeds Might Be a Source of Pain-relieving Compounds

Poppy plants are good sources of codeine, morphine, thebaine, etc. which have calming, sleep-inducing, and pain-relieving properties. You will find these compounds in various pharmaceutical drugs. The poopy latex, which is the milky white liquid present in the poppy pod, contains these alkaloids. Opium compounds are generally not found in poppy seeds. However, they might get contaminated with such compounds due to pest damage or at the time of harvesting. Though poppy seeds are often washed to discard the opium compounds before they reach the shelves in the supermarkets, you can lay your hands on unwashed poppy seeds too. These poppy seeds act as a natural alternative to a few pharmaceutical drugs. With that being said, there are quite a few health risks associated with unwashed poppy seeds, including accidental death. You should always consume unwashed poppy seeds under medical supervision.

Poppy Seeds Promote Skin and Heart Health

Poppyseed oil is laden with mono and poly-unsaturated fats which are good for your skin and overall health. According to research, diets that have high amounts of unsaturated fats help in cutting down the risk of stroke and heart attacks by almost 17%. Having a diet with unsaturated fats is beneficial. Diets that have a high omega-6: omega-3 ratio might cause disease and inflammation. It would be better for you if you stay away from oils that are high in omega-6 like poppyseed oil. Regular consumption is risky. The amount of fat found in poppyseed oil might be favorable for wound healing. With all these being said, detailed research is required.

Other Benefits

In addition to the above-mentioned benefits, poppy seeds are known to boost digestion, treat asthma, coughs, and headaches, and promote hair and skin health. Though there isn’t elaborate evidence, the nutrients available in poppy seeds might benefit you by aiding digestion, protecting you from a few illnesses, and enhancing your fertility.  Poppy seeds have high quantities of fiber. 9 grams of poppy seeds offer you 1.7 grams of fiber. Therefore, poppy seeds can boost your gut health and help in reducing constipation. Poppy seeds also contain antioxidants that can safeguard your body from cellular damage, a condition that can lead to quite a few illnesses. As per research, women who have flushed down the poppyseed oil products flushed through the fallopian tubes might experience enhanced fertility. The results are undoubtedly quite promising. However, more research needs to be done.

Unwashed poppy seeds, as discussed above, might be contaminated with opium compounds which have a few benefits of their own. But unwashed poppy seeds must never be consumed as there might be some health risks.

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