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Amazing Benefits of Sesame Oil (+5 Refreshing Recipes)

Amazing Benefits of Sesame Oil (+5 Refreshing Recipes)

We hear a lot about the benefits of olive oil and the dangers of hydrogenated oils, but what about sesame oil? This vegetable oil is often considered a staple in Asian cuisines, but in the Western world, much less is known about it. Here are some of the multifaceted benefits of sesame oil, as well as a few mouth-watering recipes.

1. Support heart health

Of all the benefits of sesame oil, the most important of all is its ability to support the heart. As an anti-inflammatory, sesame oil acts to prevent atherosclerotic lesions, a chronic disease of the heart. Sesamol, an active ingredient in sesame oil, is packed with more than two dozen beneficial components for the heart.

2. Maintain soft skin

While tea tree oil is best known for supporting skin and hair, sesame oil also provides nutrient-dense fats that can soothe the skin. Sesame oil is considered a natural sunscreen containing vitamin E. It also moisturizes dry skin and can counter the effects of aging and wrinkles.

3. Powerful antioxidant

Sesame oil is a powerful antioxidant, meaning that it helps prevent free radicals from multiplying in the body. Free radicals have been known to play a role in various disease processes, including cancer and neurological disorders.

4. Preserve joint flexibility

Sesame oil has frequently been associated with joint health. One surprising study showed that the potent oil exerted a more positive impact than its contender–an arthritis drug for the knees.

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5. Support oral health

There are many supposed facts about food that we question. However, sesame oil’s ability to bolster oral health is well-documented in medical research. Rinsing the mouth with sesame oil has been shown to lower streptococcus mutants in both the teeth and saliva.

6. Great source of protein

Some will claim that you can only obtain a sufficient amount of protein from meat. However, this is far from true. Sesame oil is one of many vegetarian sources of protein, containing nearly five grams per ounce.

7. Protect against diabetes

One of the more surprising benefits of sesame oil is that it can actually help stave off diabetes. A 2011 study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition showed that sesame oil complemented and increased the effectiveness of an anti-diabetic drug.

8. Lower blood pressure

Something about sesame oil seems to induce a positive effect when consumed by those with hypertension. It is believed that the high magnesium content in the oil is responsible for stabilizing blood pressure.

Five Great Recipes Using Sesame Oil

Stir fry with sesame oil

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benefits of sesame oil

    via the Perfect Pantry

    This delicious and nutrient-dense Asian dish from The Perfect Pantry couples savory with a bit of spice. The stir fry includes bok choy, ginger, and garlic, and takes just minutes to prepare at home.

    Mango pickle

    mango

      via tarladalal.com

      You may be wondering what on earth mango pickle is, but you’ll be glad you took the time to whip some up. This traditional Indian snack combines ingredients you wouldn’t expect to mesh so tastefully. In the end, you’ll have a refreshing dish of both spicy and sweet flavors.

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      Sesame noodles

      benefits of sesame oil

        via The Pioneer Women Cooks

        If you’re in the mood for something simple, sesame noodles are a great staple for those learning to cook. This carefully concocted recipe is chock full of all the right flavors to satisfy and fill you up–like garlic, chili, and green onion.

        Sesame oil chicken wings

        chick

          via allrecipes

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          This recipe will make its way straight to a meat-eater’s heart, giving a casual appetizer an exotic spin. You don’t have to be a pro chef to throw together this nine ingredient recipe in your skillet.

          Sesame green beans

          sesame oil

            via foodnetwork

            This recipe makes for a perfect healthy side dish with only six basic ingredients. In just 10 minutes you will have a plate of savory vegetables you won’t have to force yourself to eat.

            Featured photo credit: Chamille White via shutterstock.com

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            Last Updated on November 20, 2020

            Kickstart Your Morning Workout With These 10 Simple Habits

            Kickstart Your Morning Workout With These 10 Simple Habits

            Benjamin Franklin said it like this: “Early to bed, early to rise, will make a man healthy, wealthy, and wise.” He knew from his own experiences and watching others that the ones who got up early were healthier and more successful. That’s why a morning workout can be so important.

            One 2017 study found that:[1]

            “after controlling for such factors as age, sex, smoking habits, and others…night owls, were found to have a 10 percent greater risk of dying from any cause compared to morning types.”

            This is a great reason to tap into some morning motivation and get your morning workout done.

            Circadian Rhythm for morning workout

              As you can see in the above graph, your blood pressure begins to rise between 6 and 7 in the morning[2]. That means this is a great time to get your body moving and your heart pumping, even if it’s just for 20 minutes of exercise in the morning. 

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              Here are some tips on how to find the motivation for a morning workout.

              1. Remember Your Why

              It starts with remembering why you want to get up for a morning workout. If you don’t set a goal and establish your reasons for accomplishing a health and fitness goal, then you definitely won’t get up early.

              Getting up early isn’t easy. If it were, everyone would do it, right? Your goal for your health and fitness must be so strong, and the WHY behind it must be so powerful, that nothing will stop you from accomplishing that goal.

              2. Go to Bed Early

              If you want to get up early for a morning workout, it’s going to be important to get to bed earlier. Falling asleep at midnight and trying to get up at six just won’t work in your favor.

              This will likely be very difficult for a few days while you adjust your sleeping habits. However, as you get into an exercise routine in the morning, this will naturally make it easier to fall asleep earlier and faster at night.

              3. Make a Commitment

              I sometimes tell my Facebook community of my plans to work out, and we all keep each other motivated by posting our runs, our workouts, etc. This is a way to develop accountability. By publicly announcing your intentions, you increase your chances of actually carrying out your plans.

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              Another way to do this is to find an accountability partner who has similar goals for morning workouts. You can check in with each other to make sure you’re sticking to your plans. If that doesn’t work, hire a personal trainer for a few weeks to get you started.  

              You can learn how to find a good accountability partner here.

              4. Find a Friend

              If you can find a friend that is motivated like you are, and you can hold each other accountable daily to working out, then you will accomplish your fitness goals. Many people prefer working out with friends to working out alone. Whether it’s a chat while hitting the treadmill at the gym, or having someone to spot you while weightlifting, working out with friends is sometimes just more enjoyable.

              Texting each other the night before with a simple statement is best. Don’t ask: “Are we still working out in the morning?” With this kind of question, if they were thinking about not working out, you just gave them an opt out.

              Make a statement instead: “Can’t wait to see you in the morning!” This implies that they will be there, and they will feel more obligated to show up.

              5. Treat Yourself

              We all have to treat ourselves every now and then. After a morning workout, plan to treat yourself with a colorful, healthy breakfast or a delicious morning smoothie. This will help you look forward to something and push through to the end of your workout.

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              You can learn more on rewards and punishments here.

              6. Change your Mindset

              Many people throw away the idea of a morning workout by simply saying, “I’m not a morning person.”  Instead of using this excuse, decide to try to become a morning person by shifting your mindset.

              When you look into the benefits of waking up early and getting some exercise in before your day starts, you’ll feel more positive about your life overall.

              7. Plan Your Day

              You know you’re going to be busy. Try time blocking to plan all the things you need to do on a given day, and make sure you add in your morning workout[3]. If you have a plan laid out, you’ll be more likely to follow it and get done everything on your list done.

              Time blocking

                8. Reflect on How You’ll Feel After

                Starting a morning workout is hard, but visualizing how you’ll feel after can help you find motivation. Think about the extra energy you’ll have and how proud you’ll feel knowing that you were already so productive. No matter what you do the rest of the day, at least you squeezed in your exercise!

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                For me, I live in an area where there are a lot of runners. When I am heading home in the evening or sitting out on the patio at one of my favorite restaurants, and I see the runners go by, it makes me feel so accomplished that I got mine in that morning and I can enjoy the evening.

                9. Lay out Your Workout Clothes

                Setting out your workout clothes the night before makes it impossible for you to start to run late because you couldn’t find something to wear. Tap into the determination you have before bed in order to convince your less-than-motivated morning self that you need to get up and get your morning workout in. When you wake up and see your outfit laid out next to you, it’ll push you to get up and get moving.

                10.  Set Multiple Alarms

                Many people miss their morning workout simply because they hit the snooze button so many times. In order to make this more difficult for yourself, set a series of alarms. That way, if you keep hitting snooze, you’ll have three or four alarms going off every ten minutes, which will be annoying enough to get you out of bed.

                Also, put one alarm at least a few feet from your bed so that you’re forced to get up to turn it off.

                Final Thoughts

                About three years ago I went from being the person that says I will never be an early riser to a person that loves to get the day started as soon as possible. Without the distractions that begin to come around 8 or 9 in the morning, you’ll find that you’re more productive and more likely to squeeze in that morning workout.

                Take some of the actions above and find the best morning workout routine to start your day and feel good.

                More Tips on Morning Exercises

                Featured photo credit: Tomasz Woźniak via unsplash.com

                Reference

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