Chia seeds, also called Mexican/Shalba chia, are pretty small edible seeds. Chia seeds are highly nutritious despite their small size. Ancient cultures like Maya and Aztec used to include chia seeds in their diet. Chia seeds have been used for centuries because of their enticing health benefits. Like how loads of people have been using Capital casino for years. Today we will be giving you a list of 13 health benefits of chia seeds.
What are Chia Seeds?
When you hear the word “chia,” you must be picturing some clay figurine of a pet with green fur. Well, you are not wrong, but there is another chia which is a type of seed. Chia seeds are edible and are packed with nutrients.
Salvia hispanica L is a desert plant that provides chia seeds. It is believed that Central America was the origin of chia seed. There is chia seed became the main element of the ancient Aztec diet.
Recently chia seeds have gained quite a bit of attention for being a good source of mega-3. Besides omega-3, chia seed has plenty of other important nutrients, which we will discuss today. So here is a list of 13 health benefits of chia seeds.
1.Nutritional Value of Chia Seeds
Chia seeds are small-sized white or black seeds that have a lot to offer when it comes to nutrition. In ancient times, people believed chia seeds were very healthy; that belief is now backed by modern science.
Here is the nutrition value of 2 tablespoons or 28 grams of chia seeds:
- Fiber 9.8 grams
- Carbs 11.9 grams
- Fat 8.7 grams
- Calories 138
- Protein 4.7 grams
- Alpha-linolenic acid 6 grams
- Iron 12% of the daily value
- Calcium 14% of the daily value
- Vitamin B3 16% of the daily value
- Vitamin B1 15% of the daily value
- Phosphorus 20% Of the daily value
- Zinc 12% of the daily value
- Magnesium 23% of the daily vale
It is quite impressive that chia seed has such a dense nutrient density considering this is only two tables spoon or equivalent to one serving.
2.Chia Seeds Help Reduces Inflammation
Chia seed is a plant-based food with tons of omega-3 fatty acids. And omega 3 reduces inflammation. Omega 3 is directly responsible for reducing some substance in our body that causes inflammation.
Our body causes inflammation as a natural response to any damage or infection. So it is important for our health. But sometimes, our body becomes confused and causes inflammation without any infection or damage. Sometimes the inflammation stays longer than it should have. It’s called long-term or chronic inflammation.
So if you are having inflammation or want to avoid unnecessary inflammation, chia seeds can definitely help with that.
3.Loaded With Antioxidants
Chia seeds are additionally a brilliant source of antioxidants. Antioxidants are one of the most important food components that fight cancer.
There are molecules named free radicals in the human body. Antioxidant fights free radicals that cause damage to DNA, protein, and cells in general. So to protect yourself from free radicals, feel free to add chia seeds to your daily diet.
Free radicals also cause diseases like cancer and contribute to your aging. That is, antioxidants are highly recommended to prevent cancer and early aging. Eat plenty of chia seeds daily as it is high in antioxidants.
4.Good For Picky Eaters
Chia seeds don’t really have much of a taste or flavor. It takes the flavor of what you add with it. You won’t have to worry when adding chia seeds to something because chia seeds will not affect the taste.
You don’t need to spend time and effort cooking, grinding, or preparing chia seeds to eat it. It is very convenient to add to your diet.
Chia seeds have fat and can absorb a lot of water, so you can use it as an egg substitute or even make a gel. A good egg substitute for baking.
So all the picky eaters out there can add chia seeds to their diet because it is high in nutrients and can be added to your daily food. Picky eaters tend to avoid healthy food because of its taste. That won’t be the case when they eat chia seeds.
Chia seed is high in fiber too. So picky eaters can get tons of nutrients and fiber by consuming chia seeds.
5.High In Fiber
We know fiber is very important for our gut health. Food high in fiber keeps our digestive tract healthy and prevents constipation. Nowadays, constipation has become a health issue, particularly for city people because people living in the city eat less fiber and more junk food.
Chia seeds don’t require extra time to prepare and very easily can prevent low fiber problems in your diet. Just one ounce of chia seeds provides 10 grams of fiber. That’s almost half of the daily fiber requirement.
6.May Support Weight Loss
The fiber in chia seeds is mostly soluble. Soluble fiber absorbs water. By absorbing water-soluble fiber expands in your stomach becomes gel-like. As a result, it slows down your digestion and helps you feel full.
That is why it is claimed that soluble fiber helps in weight loss and control appetite. Some research shows fiber can help prevent obesity or overweight.
The protein in chia seeds can help reduce food intake or appetite too.
Chia seeds help in weight loss or not; there are still many mixed results on that. Some studies have found chia seeds do help with weight loss and some studies show chia seeds have next to no role in weight loss.
Because of so much of mixed results, it comes down to your decision. You can consume chia seeds to help you with weight loss or not eat chia seeds.
7.May Help To Reduce Blood Sugar
Chia seeds can improve your insulin sensitivity and stabilize your blood sugar level. Chia seeds prevent sugar spikes after you have a meal. So it can greatly help people who have diabetes.
Feel free to add chia seeds to sweet drinks like smoothies juices, and you can add them to dressings and other sorts of food too.
8.May Lower Risk of Heart Disease
Chia seeds have plenty of omega-3 and fiber so that they may reduce your risk of any heart-related disease.
Chia seeds have soluble fiber. Soluble fiber can reduce LDL or bad cholesterol in your blood. Reducing bad cholesterol will definitely reduce the risk of heart disease.
Research shows ALA or also known as omega-3, has also been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease. And chia seeds are high in omega 3.
9.Chia Seeds Are Good For Bone Health
Chia seeds have phosphorus, calcium, magnesium, and other important nutrients that are important for bone health. Numerous observational investigations recommend that getting enough of these supplements is significant for keeping up with great bone mineral thickness, a mark of bone strength.
Chia seeds have ALA in them, which may improve bone health. Studies have found that ALA may also be associated with improving the mineral density of bone.
A controlled study found that long-term dietary intake of chia seeds is related to bone health and mineral density. So to make sure of your bone health, you can add chia seeds to your daily diet.
Protein is essential for our body. Proteins are primarily made of amino acids. Two tablespoons of chia seeds contain around 4 grams of plant-based protein.
An adult should take .08 grams of protein per kilogram of their body weight, according to Dietary Reference Intakes (DRI). So surely you can consume chia seeds to fulfill the daily protein intake requirement along with other protein-based food, meat, dairy, etc.
The protein in chia seeds is plant-based, so it can be a great protein source for vegans.
12.High In Omega-3 And Omega-6
Chia seeds have a high amount of fatty acids; it includes omega-3 fatty acid and omega-6 fatty acid. These two fatty acids have a lot of health benefits.
13.Good Source of Iron
An adult needs around 8 to 18 milligrams of iron daily. Over 2 milligrams of iron can b found in one ounce of chia seeds.
How Much Chia Seeds Should You Eat?
A person should eat fiber from 19 to 38 grams per day. For women, the ideal number would be 25 grams of fiber.
You will get 1o grams of fiber from two tablespoons of chia seeds. So the recommended amount of chia seed for daily consumption would be one and a half spoons of chia seeds. The rest of your daily requirement of fiber should be fulfilled by fruits and vegetables.
Best Ways To Eat Chia Seeds
There are plenty of ways to eat chia seeds. You can eat them dry but only with salad. All the other ways require the chia seeds to be soft and not dry.
Here are some fun and tasty ideas to eat chia seeds:
- You can mix chis seeds with milk or juice to make pudding.
- With Lemonade
- Using chia seed to thicken soups and smoothies
- Put with overnight oats
- Add to muffin
- Make jam and pudding with chia seeds
- Chia seeds can be used as an egg substitute to make baking goods like bread or cakes.
- You can mix them in muffin batter.
- You can use raw chia seeds on salad or oatmeal.
- You can soak them to make chia sprouts.
- You can make breading for fried chicken by mixing chia seeds with spices and almond flour.
- You can easily make a homemade energy bar with chia seeds.
There is next to no risk for consuming chia seeds. Some people may have an allergy to chia seeds, but it is quite rare.
There are structural similarities between chia seeds and other foods like hazelnuts and sesame seeds. And people who have an allergy to that similar structural foods may face allergic reactions if they consume chia seeds. If anyone notices any allergic reaction after eating chia seeds, should stop eating them and consult with a doctor.
Chia seeds are highly nutrient-dense, considering their small size. Chia seeds have important nutrients like fiber, omega-3, antioxidants, and it is super easy to prepare chia seeds. There are plenty of positive sides to consuming chia seeds while next to no negative side to consuming them.