Chia seeds have multiple health benefits, making them a superfood.
In this article, you will find the top health benefits of chia seeds based on scientific evidence.
What Are Chia Seeds?
Chia Seeds are small fruit high in omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, protein, and minerals.
They can be eaten raw or used in a variety of cooking methods.
Chia seeds have many health benefits, including weight loss, cardiovascular support, and lowering cholesterol, among others.
Read on to learn more about the health benefits of chia seeds:
Health Benefits of Chia Seeds
1. Chia Seeds Are Rich in Nutrients
One ounce (28.4 grams) of chia seeds contains:
- Fat: 9 grams (mainly omega-3s)
- Protein: 4 grams
- Fiber: 11 grams
- Calcium: 18% of the daily value
- Phosphorus: 27% of the daily value
- Magnesium: 30% of the daily value
- Manganese: 30% of the daily value
- They also contain potassium, zinc, and vitamins B3, B1 and B2
All these benefits only provide 138 calories and 1 gram of digestible carbohydrates.
Not only that, but chia seeds are whole-grain foods and are gluten-free.
2. Chia Seeds Are A Good Source of Antioxidants
Chia seeds are a rich source of antioxidants.
They help keep the sensitive fats in the grains from going rancid.
The consumption of foods with antioxidants is very beneficial for health because it helps fight free radicals, which cause cellular aging and increase cancer risk.
3. Chia Seeds Are Rich in Fiber
One ounce of chia seeds contains 12 grams of carbohydrates. The exciting thing is that 11 of them are fibers that the body does not digest.
In this way, chia seeds can absorb more than 10-12 times their weight in water, thus turning into a kind of gel that expands in the stomach.
In addition, the fibers feed the friendly bacteria housed in the intestine, which is essential for the proper functioning of the digestive system.
4. Chia Seeds Are High in Quality Protein
Chia seeds are composed of 14% protein.
They also contain a good balance of essential amino acids so that the body can use the protein content.
Among the main benefits of proteins is their ability to help us lose weight.
5. Chia Seeds May Help You Lose Weight
First, its soluble fiber content absorbs a large amount of water and thus expands in the stomach, which helps keep you feeling full longer.
A study showed that consuming chia seeds during breakfast causes an increase in satiety and a reduction in food consumption in the short term.
However, a study conducted on 90 overweight people showed that consuming 50 grams of chia per day does not cause a significant effect on weight loss.
Another study of 62 women found that while chia seeds do not help you lose weight, they do increase the omega-3 content of your blood.
Finally, a six-month investigation conducted on obese people with type 2 diabetes showed that daily consumption of chia seeds helps to lose weight (compared to placebo).
You can read a more detailed article about Chia Seeds and Weight loss here: Chia Seeds For Weight Loss: The Truth Revealed By Science.
6. Chia Seeds Are High in Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Chia seeds contain a large amount of Omega-3.
ALAs must be converted to EPA and DHA before your body can use them.
According to research, chia seeds can increase blood levels of ALA and EPA but not DHA levels.
7. Chia Seeds May Lower Your Risk of Heart Disease
Studies in rodents have shown that chia seeds can reduce risk factors such as insulin resistance, inflammation, or triglycerides. In addition, they help increase the levels of good cholesterol (HDL).
Other studies have shown that the consumption of chia seeds can significantly help reduce blood pressure, which is one of the leading causes of heart problems.
8. They’re High in Many Important Nutrients For Bones
Because they contain a large amount of calcium, chia seeds are very beneficial for bone health.
However, chia seeds also contain phytic acid, which reduces the absorption of calcium.
More research still needs to be done to confirm its benefits on bone health.
9. Chia Seeds May Reduce Blood Sugar Levels
Likewise, spikes in blood sugar levels after meals can also harm health.
Animal studies have found that chia seeds help regulate blood sugar levels after meals.
As for human studies, they have shown that the same happened when consuming bread containing chia seeds.
10. May Help Reduce Chronic Inflammation
Some unhealthy habits lead to increased inflammation in the body.
According to a 3-month study of 20 diabetes patients, daily consumption of 37 grams of chia seeds reduces inflammatory marker hs-CRP by 40%
However, another study found no significant effects of chia seeds on inflammatory markers.
11. Chia Seeds Are Easy to Incorporate Into Your Diet
You can consume chia seeds raw, adding them to puddings, smoothies, or baked goods.
Also, when you mix them with water, it forms a gel that replaces the egg.
The recommended dose is 20 grams of chia seeds, twice a day.
12. May Help Patients with Alzheimer
According to a study, chia seeds might provide therapeutic potential in Alzheimer’s disease, as shown by ameliorating cognitive symptoms.
Although, more clinical studies are needed to confirm this claim.
13. May Help People With Diabetes
One study found, chia seeds are a low glycemic index fruit due to their low number of carbohydrates instead of conventional grains, which is helpful for glycemic control in diabetes.
Another study found chia seeds to be beneficial in helping weight loss and enhancements of obesity-related risk factors.
Faqs about chia seeds
1. Are chia seeds good for you
Yes, they certainly are, for all the nutrients and health benefits they provide.
2. Chia seeds calories
- 100 grams of chia seeds have 486 calories.
- 1 oz (28.4 grams) of chia have 138 calories.
3. Chia seeds: how to eat?
You can consume chia seeds raw, adding them to puddings, smoothies, desserts, or baked goods. You can also use it as part of a meal or snack.
Chia Seeds are a versatile superfood with many health benefits; they are also great for adding fiber and nutrients to smoothies and desserts.
4. How much chia seeds per day
- For Adults: 15 grams (2 tablespoons) daily.
- For Children and teens ages 5 to 18 years: 1.4 to 4.3 grams daily.
5. Can You Use Chia Seeds For Weight Loss
Yes, you can use chia seeds for weight loss.