Those little black seeds found in kiwi fruits do more than just get stuck in your teeth -- they also provide a number of essential nutrients. The amounts of these nutrients are relatively small because they make up only a small portion of each kiwi, but they can still contribute to your overall nutritional status.
Provide Omega-3 Fats
Kiwi seeds provide a small amount of omega-3 fats, with each medium kiwi fruit containing about 29 milligrams of these essential fats in the form of alpha-linolenic acid out of the recommended intake of 1,300 to 2,700 milligrams per 2,000 calories eaten each day. Omega-3 fats are important for brain and heart health. Kiwis are one of the foods with a healthy ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 fats. Many people in the United States get too many omega-6 fats and not enough omega-3 fats, potentially putting them at higher risk for inflammation, heart disease, cancer and cognitive aging.
Each medium kiwi fruit provides about 2 grams of fiber, or 8 percent of the daily value. A portion of the fiber in fruits and vegetables comes from the skins and seeds of these foods. Getting enough fiber in your diet may help lower your risk of high cholesterol, hemorrhoids, constipation, heart disease and diverticulosis. Fiber can also help you feel full longer, making it easier to maintain a healthy weight.
Protein and Antioxidants
Kiwi seeds also contain a small amount of protein, with each fruit providing a little less than a gram. Protein provides the amino acids your body uses to make whatever types of protein it needs for good health.
When you eat kiwi seeds, you'll also get some antioxidants, mostly in the form of vitamin E, with each kiwi fruit providing about 5 percent of the daily value for this essential vitamin.
If you're allergic to peanuts and tree nuts, you may also react to kiwi seeds and vice versa. A study published in Allergy in November 2014 noted that two allergens present in kiwi seeds exhibited cross-reactivity with peanuts and tree nuts. Digestion of the fruit causes the release of these allergens.
- HealthAliciousNess.com: Nutrition Facts Comparison Tool
- Journal of Food Lipids: Berry Seeds: A Source of Specialty Oils With High Content of Bioactives and Nutritional Value
- Allergy: Detailed Characterization of Act d 12 and Act d 13 From Kiwi Seeds: Implication in IgE Cross-Reactivity With Peanut and Tree Nuts
- Journal of Food, Agriculture & Environment: Acclimatization Related Proteins and Factors in Somaclone Lines in Kiwifruit (Actinidia Deliciosa)
- HealthAliciousNess.com: Top 10 Foods With the Highest Omega 3 to Omega 6 Ratio
- Colorado State University Extension: Dietary Fiber
- Colorado State University Extension: Omega-3 Fatty Acids