February 19, 2023 - Shelly Jones
Updated Version - July 15, 2023
Chia seeds are nutritious edible seeds from a flowering plant in the mint family called Salvia hispanica. Chia seeds are rich in fiber, protein and healthy omega 3 fatty acids. Chia seeds can be eaten raw or cooked.
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Chia seeds were a staple food of the Aztec and Mayan civilizations and were used as a source of energy for messengers and warriors.
Let’s look at the top 7 health benefits of eating Chia seeds.
Chia seeds are high in omega 3 fatty acids, which may help lower triglyceride levels and reduce the risk of heart disease. Studies have shown that consuming chia seeds reduces inflammation and may help improve cardiovascular risk factors such as blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
Chia seeds are high in both soluble and insoluble fiber, which may help slow down the digestion and absorption of carbohydrates and sugars, resulting in more stable blood sugar levels. Chia seeds have a low glycemic index, which means they are digested and absorbed slowly. It can help control blood sugar levels and prevent spikes in blood sugar levels.
Chia seeds are high in fiber, which can help promote healthy digestion and regularity. Studies have shown that consuming chia seeds may help to improve constipation and other digestive symptoms in individuals with irritable bowel syndrome. Chia seeds can help soothe the digestive tract due to their mucilage content. Mucilage is a gel-like substance that can help coat and soothe the digestive tract, reducing irritation and inflammation.
Chia seeds are high in fiber and plant-based protein. Fiber can help promote satiety, reduce appetite, and ultimately lead to a decrease in calorie intake. Protein is known to be more satiating than carbohydrates or fat, so adding chia seeds to a meal or snack can help keep you feeling full and satisfied for longer.
Chia seeds are a good source of several bone-building minerals, including calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus. These minerals are essential for maintaining strong bones and preventing osteoporosis. Chia seeds are also a good source of protein, which is essential for bone health.
Chia seeds are an excellent source of omega 3 fatty acids, specifically alpha-linolenic acid. Omega 3 fatty acids have been shown to have anti-inflammatory effects, and a diet high in omega 3 fatty acids may help reduce chronic inflammation. Chia seeds are rich in antioxidants, including flavonoids and phenolic acids, which can help neutralize free radicals and reduce inflammation.
Chia seeds are hydrophilic, which means they can absorb up to 12 times their weight in water. This property can help athletes stay hydrated during prolonged exercise by maintaining fluid balance in the body. Chia seeds are a good source of several important nutrients for athletes, including carbohydrates, protein, fiber, and omega-3 fatty acids. These nutrients can help provide energy, support muscle growth and recovery, and reduce inflammation.
Chia seeds can cause swelling in the throat and esophagus by absorbing a lot of liquid. If you have trouble swallowing, then you should stop eating chia seeds.