Why You Need Sacha Inchi Seeds In Your Life
My latest food obsession is sacha inchi seeds. I know obsession is a strong word. To clarify, I’m not literally obsessed with sacha inchi seeds. However, as a dietitian, my goal is to introduce and encourage my patients and private clients to try new foods, particularly plant-based, healthy, good-for-you foods. If you're not familiar with sacha inchi seeds, then it's my pleasure to introduce you to this amazing seed! They are fairly new to the US, having been approved for import by the USDA in the last few years. Native to Peru and cultivated in the amazon, this seed is one of the few complete protein plant-based foods; meaning it contains all nine essential amino acids (proteins that must be supplied in your diet, as our body can't produce them). This is great news for vegetarians, right? It is indeed, however, sacha inchi seeds are such a nutrition powerhouse, that anyone will benefit from incorporating it in their diet.
Here’s why you need sacha inchi seeds in your life:
Also called the Inca Peanut, sacha inchi seeds taste great and are packed with protein! The taste reminds me of a peanut, with more of a roasted flavor, without even being roasted, and a healthier fat profile than peanuts. I like to eat them raw or make delicious cacao dusted seeds. One ounce of savi seeds is 190 calories and provides 8 grams of complete protein! That’s more protein than any other seed or nut! And as stated earlier, sacha inchi seeds are a complete protein, containing all nine essential amino acids. What’s even more interesting about sacha inchi seeds is that they are high in tryptophan, an essential amino acid that’s converted to serotonin in the body. Studies have shown that serotonin is necessary for good sleep and a stable mood. Sacha inchi seeds are also high in fiber, providing 5 grams of fiber per ounce and zero net carbs.
Secondly, with omega-3 fatty acids comprising 54% of the healthy fat in these amazing seeds, they provide a rich source of essential fat. The health benefits of omega-3 fatty acids are endless. Given that they are an essential fat, we have to get them from our diet, and savi seeds provide a less expensive way to increase your intake. Even though fish and fish oil provide a more bioavailable form of omega-3 fatty acids, increasing the variety of your healthy fat in your diet with sacha inchi seeds is beneficial, as the American diet is typically deficient in omega-3 fatty acids. In one randomized controlled research trial, participants who consumed sacha inchi oil (oil produced from the seed) for four months had lower total cholesterol, lower LDL cholesterol and higher HDL cholesterol. At the end of the same study, participants also had lower arterial blood pressure. In a nutshell, because sacha inchi seeds are so high in omega-3 fatty acids, regular consumption helps prevent heart disease and high blood pressure.
Lastly, sacha inchi seeds are also high in antioxidants. Studies analyzing the nutrient content of sacha inchi seeds show the seeds are higher in antioxidants, like vitamin E, carotenoids and polyphenols, than any other seeds. So what does that means for you? Think major protection for your cells from oxidative damage. While there aren’t scientific studies on the antioxidant properties of sacha inchi seeds specifically, there’s an abundance of evidence suggesting that that a diet rich in plant-based foods provides protection against disease and aging.
I could go on and on about how yummy and chock full of healthy and beneficial nutrients sacha inchi seeds are, but I’ll stop here. Hopefully, I’ve given you enough information to try them. So, go to Amazon or the Vega website and order them. You won’t be disappointed!
You can now purchase Sacha Inchi seeds at Trader Joe's (would you expect anything less from TJ's?), or purchase online at the outlets below.
My Cacao Kissed Sacha Inchi Seeds recipe will be posted soon, so stay tuned!! And as always, I humbly ask for your feedback. Let me know your thoughts on this article, if you tried sacha inchi seeds and loved them, or if there's a nutrition topic you'd like to hear about. I'd love to hear from you!
Your CNO (Chief Nutrition Officer)