Sesame seeds are considered one of the most nutritious seeds. Health experts recommend consuming sesame seeds as they have immense benefits for your overall health. You can incorporate sesame seeds in any form into your diet. These seeds have been a part of many cuisines in various cultures. And one of the common ways to consume sesame seeds is to make prepare tahini sauce or butter with them.
What is Tahini?
Tahini is made with roasted sesame seeds. This tahini butter is widely used in Middle Eastern, Turkish, Greek, North African, and Iranian cuisines. Moreover, it is also a major ingredient in popular and savory dishes like baba ghanoush and hummus. You can eat tahini butter without mixing it with anything. It blends in well with many salad recipes as well.
It provides up to 19% of protein and many essential minerals. You should never ignore the fat content in tahini. In 13g of fats, you can get 2% saturated fats only. Remaining fats are mono and poly-unsaturated fats which are healthy for your heart. However, avoid overeating this mouthwatering butter as it is high in calories.
Nutritional Value of Tahini
Two tablespoons of tahini butter provide the following nutrients.
- Calories 178 calories
- Carbohydrates 6.36g
- Calcium 12%
- Fat 16.13g
- Dietary fiber 2.8g
- Iron 14%
- Magnesium 8%
- Phosphorus 22%
- Protein 5.1g
- Sugar 0.15g
How to Make Tahini at Home?
- Heat a pan on the stove on medium heat
- Roast sesame seeds in a pan until their color turns into brownish shade (be careful during this step as sesame seeds can burn easily)
- Let roasted sesame seeds cool down a little
- Add seeds to food processor and blend till the seeds transform into crumbs
- Blend again and add olive oil gradually until it turns into a smooth paste
- Quick, easy, and nutritious, tahini is ready to serve
Health Benefits of Tahini
1. Strengthens Bones
The mineral-dense diet is essential for the promotion of bone density. Inadequate levels of the mineral in your body are a leading cause of age-related bone deterioration. Mineral deficiency also leads to premature aging which affects your bone significantly. Therefore, to avoid severe health risks, you should increase mineral intake. Tahini seems an ideal food source in this case.
It contains a considerable amount of calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus that promote bone health and prevent disorders such as osteoporosis and rickets. You should know that minerals are necessary for the healthy development of children as well.
You can incorporate tahini into the diet of children to strengthen their bones. Weak bones contribute to fractures in children which are a debilitating health condition. Getting a sufficient amount of minerals from natural sources like tahini is safe and effective at the same time.
2. Supports Cardiovascular Health
Sesame seeds contain sesamol and sesamin that are lignans, antioxidant nutrients which you can obtain via tahini butter. Studies have revealed that this helps prevents the accumulation of cholesterol in your arteries. On the other hand, tahini provides monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats as well.
When your body gets beneficial nutrients, it lowers the risks of cardiovascular diseases such as hypertension. These nutrients also decrease high blood pressure levels that might result in heart problems. However, cardiovascular problems are serious so consult with your doctor to avoid any adverse effects.
3. Reduces Risk of Cancer
Nutritionists have revealed that ligans in tahini are similar to estrogen. The sesamol lignans and sesamin when combined with estrogen receptors protect against cancers that occur due to hormonal imbalance. If you have a history of cancer, we suggest scheduling an appointment with your doctor for a thorough examination.
4. Nutrients Absorption
Tahini promotes protective absorption of fat-soluble compounds such as tocopherol. It plays a significant role in the prevention of chronic diseases. According to a study, consuming products made with sesame seeds increases levels of serum gamma-tocopherol up to 19.1%. This way, your body prevents the onset of oxidation and inflammation on organs effectively.
5. Improves Skin Condition
Tahini contains fatty acids, natural oils and amino acids that rejuvenate skin cells and combat the risks of premature aging. Eating only two tablespoons of tahini can provide the required amount of nutrient and fat intake.
These natural ingredients in tahini are also necessary to keep skin dryness, wounds, burns, and other issues at bay. The fatty acids in tahini work as an antifungal and antibacterial agent which protects your skin from a bacterial infection that clogs pores as well. Moreover, your skin needs moderate levels of healthy fats that reduce inflammation and provide moisture to your skin.
How to Add Tahini in your Diet?
Although tahini is crucial in hummus and many recipes, you can add it in your diet in various ways as well. This superfood is great for growing children; women can eat it to get skin benefits, and a moderate amount of tahini can promote the overall health of senior people. If you are looking for healthy ways to incorporate it into your daily diet, here is a quick guide for you.
- Prepare salad dressing with freshly prepared tahini.
- Dip your vegetables in tahini and eat as a snack.
- You can serve it with grilled chicken or turkey.
- Tahini goes well with carrot soup and roasted chickpeas
- You can enjoy tahini in a cinnamon protein smoothie.
Risks Associated with Tahini
It is true that natural food sources do not contain adverse effects. Take note that everything works best in moderation. Therefore, watch the quantity of tahini you consume to avoid the following risks.
1. Allergic Reaction
If you are allergic to tree nuts, you are likely to develop sesame seeds allergy as well, especially if you eat large amounts of tahini on a daily basis. In most cases, eating one tablespoon does not lead to any reaction. However, if you observe redness or inflammation, seek medical help immediately.
2. High-Calorie Content
Tahini is a high-calorie food due to the fat content in it. Two tablespoons of tahini butter contain 178 calories. If you consume limited calories in a day, you need to reduce its intake. Moreover, obese individuals should avoid daily consumption of tahini as well.
Tahini is a famous and delicious food that blends in well with numerous recipes. You should eat a moderate quantity of tahini to get health benefits and prevent adverse effects and weight gain alike. However, it is better to consume homemade tahini or a less processed variety.