Introduction: What is Seed Chewing?
Seed chewing is a habit of some athletes, particularly baseball players, to chew on seeds before, during, and after games. It is not uncommon to see a professional baseball player with a pack of sunflower seeds in their pocket and spitting out the shells while they are playing. Although it is largely considered to be a superstitious habit, there are some potential benefits to seed chewing that may explain why so many baseball players choose to do it.
History of Seed Chewing
Seed chewing has a long history in both professional and amateur baseball. It is believed to have originated in the early 1900s when tobacco was still widely used by players. Players would chew on tobacco in order to keep their mouths moist and to keep their hands busy during the game. The habit eventually evolved into seed chewing as tobacco use was banned from the sport.
Benefits of Seed Chewing
Although seed chewing is largely seen as a superstitious habit, there are some potential benefits that could explain why players choose to do it.
The act of seed chewing can help players focus on the game. The repetitive motion of chewing can help the player stay in the moment and not get distracted by outside thoughts. This can be especially helpful when playing in a high-pressure situation.
Chewing on a seed can also have a calming effect on players. It can help to relieve stress and anxiety and help the player stay loose and relaxed during the game.
Seed chewing can also provide some physical benefits. Chewing on the seed can help keep the player’s jaw and mouth muscles relaxed and loose. This can help with the player’s overall performance, as the relaxed muscles can help the player to stay focused and maintain a consistent swing throughout the game.
Seeds are a great source of nutrition and can provide a variety of vitamins and minerals to the body. Sunflower seeds, for example, are a good source of Vitamin E, magnesium, and zinc.
Types of Seeds Commonly Chewed
There are a variety of different kinds of seeds that are commonly chewed by athletes.
- Sunflower Seeds: Sunflower seeds are perhaps the most popular type of seed chewed by athletes. They are high in Vitamin E, magnesium, and zinc.
- Pumpkin Seeds: Pumpkin seeds are also popular among athletes. They are a good source of iron, magnesium, and zinc.
- Watermelon Seeds: Watermelon seeds are high in protein and are also a good source of iron and magnesium.
- Flax Seeds: Flax seeds are high in Omega-3 fatty acids and are a good source of fiber.
- Chia Seeds: Chia seeds are high in fiber and protein and are a good source of antioxidants.
Health Risks of Seed Chewing
Although there are some potential benefits to seed chewing, there are also some health risks associated with it.
Chewing on seeds can be a choking hazard, especially for younger athletes. It is important to make sure that the seeds are chewed properly and that the player is aware of the potential risks.
The hard shells of the seeds can also cause damage to teeth. It is important to make sure that the player is brushing and flossing regularly to reduce the risk of tooth decay.
Some people may also be allergic to certain types of seeds. It is important to make sure that the player is aware of any potential allergies before ingesting the seeds.
Seed chewing is a common habit among athletes, particularly baseball players. Although it is largely seen as a superstitious habit, there are some potential benefits to seed chewing that could explain why players choose to do it. There are also some health risks associated with seed chewing, so it is important to make sure that the player is aware of these risks before ingesting the seeds.
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- Hollis, M. (2015). The Benefits of Pumpkin Seeds. Retrieved from healthline.com/health/food-nutrition/benefits-of-pumpkin-seeds#1
- Gunnars, K. (2017). 10 Evidence-Based Health Benefits of Flaxseeds. Retrieved from healthline.com/nutrition/10-proven-health-benefits-of-flaxseeds
- Gunnars, K. (2018). 8 Proven Health Benefits of Chia Seeds. Retrieved from healthline.com/nutrition/8-proven-health-benefits-of-chia-seeds#section1