What is it?
Helianthus annuus is an annual species of sunflower grown as a crop for its edible oil and edible fruits (sunflower seeds). This species of sunflower is also used as bird food, as livestock forage (as a meal or a silage plant), and in some industrial applications.
- Sunflowers: They help control cell damage, thus playing a role in preventing cancer. This is because sunflower seeds are a good source of selenium, which is a proven enemy of cancer.
- Sunflowers: Contain bone-healthy minerals. Besides calcium, your bones need magnesium and copper to stay strong. Sunflower seeds have both these minerals.
- Sunflowers: Have been shown to ease inflammatory conditions in nature, such as joint pain, gastric ulcers, skin eruptions, asthma and such. That’s because sunflower seeds are loaded with antioxidants.
The plant was first domesticated in the Americas. Wild Helianthus annuus is a widely branched annual plant with many flower heads. The domestic sunflower, however, possesses a single large inflorescence (flower head) atop an unbranched stem.