Chia is an edible seed that comes from the desert plant Salvia hispanica, comes from a species in the mint family that is native to Central America.
Chia seeds have recently gained attention as an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acid also Chia seeds are popular for weight loss. They reduce food cravings by preventing some of the food that you eat from getting absorbed into your system. This blockage of calorie absorption makes them a great diet helper. rich in fibre which helps with satiety, the feeling of fullness, they are also great for athletes because the “chia gel” can hydrate the body.
one ounce (28 grams) of chia seeds contain about:
- 137 calories
- 12.3 grams carbohydrates
- 4.4 grams protein
- 8.6 grams fat
- 10.6 grams fiber
- 0.6 milligram manganese (30 percent DV)
- 265 milligrams phosphorus (27 percent DV)
- 177 milligrams calcium (18 percent DV)
- 1 milligram zinc (7 percent DV)
- 0.1 milligram copper (3 percent DV)
- 44.8 milligrams potassium (1 percent DV)
This is what makes chia seeds so impressive, when you consider that this is just a single ounce, which supplies only 137 calories and one gram of digestible carbohydrate!
When eaten dry, chia tastes a bit like a poppy seed. It is dense, small and crunchy. Soaked chia seeds absorb liquid and become very plump, sweet and soft like tapioca pearls, and can be used much in the same way.
Chia seeds are so portable and easy to use you can just sprinkle them onto salads, soups, yogurt, even into sandwiches and wraps or use them in recipes that call for sesame or poppy seeds. Add to muffins, bread, cookies and cakes. Chia absorbs 9-12 times its weight in water and can make a delicious tapioca-like pudding.
Reduce The Risk Of Diabetes And Heart Disease?
Chia seeds do contain fibre, protein and unsaturated fats – all of which are known to support a healthy heart and stable blood-sugar levels. Some research has suggested that chia seeds may be beneficial for overweight and obese patients with type 2 diabetes. However, there is no conclusive evidence to suggest chia seeds can directly reduce the risk of heart disease or diabetes. As part of a balanced diet, chia seeds may contribute to overall health. Other lifestyle factors such as regular exercise are more likely to have an effect.
Chia seed is very rich in fiber help people to feel full for longer, and they are usually lower in calories. Increased fiber intake and a high fiber diet have been shown to help with weight loss. Besides that their high levels of omega-3-fatty acids and alpha-linoleic acid may be useful for weight loss.
However, a study, published in Nutrition Research, concludes that, in overweight adults, chia seeds have “no influence on body mass or composition, or various disease risk factor measures.”
Assertions that this ancient seed can lower blood pressure and make you lose weight have not been proven.
Omega 3 Dose
Omega 3 is extremely important for our body’s functioning. Chia seeds are one of the highest sources of plant-based omega acid, also known as Alpha Linolenic Acid (AHA). These are a part of polyunsaturated fats which are the ‘good fats’ and extremely essential for the nervous functioning of our body.
Essential Minerals and Antioxidants
Chia seeds are loaded with essential nutrients and are suitable to give your daily diet a power boost. They are full of antioxidants that are linked with acting against inflammation, growth of cancer cells, ageing and age-related cognitive decline. Just a couple of spoons of chia seeds can make for 30 percent of your daily manganese requirement and 18% of your daily calcium requirement.
Beneficial for Your Skin
Like avocados and cucumbers, chia seeds are among nature’s best offerings that, in addition to being nutritionally sound, may also promote healthy skin.
Dry and itchy skin is an annoyance, but severe cases can cause severe problems, especially when ulcers and infections develop. The results of 2010 Korean research indicate relief may be on the horizon and chia seeds may be to thank. A study involving patients with severe skin dryness used a topical salve produced from chia seed oils. After 8 weeks, all patients reported significant improvements in skin hydration.
Muscle And Tissue Regeneration
The essential fatty acids present in chia seeds boost metabolism, promoting lean muscle mass. Chia seeds promote the regeneration of damaged muscles and tissues. It contains protein and balanced amino acids that help to maintain lean muscle mass.
With a high amount of fiber, chia promotes regularity and a healthy stool. Its gel-like consistency when soaked can also support the growth of beneficial probiotics in the gut. Your gut bacteria are essential to your health and can even influence your weight and immune system, so it’s important to support them in any way you can
Chia Seeds Side Effects
There are very few side effects associated with chia seeds. There has been some conflicting research about the effect of chia seeds on prostate cancer, however. A study done with ALA and prostate cancer showed that this fatty acid could increase the risk of prostate cancer, but the study was later shown to have some bias.
In fact, according to a study in 2010, ALA did not increase prostate cancer risk and actually decreased the risk in participants.
Occasionally, some people may experience stomach discomfort when consuming chia seeds, especially in large amounts, due to the high fiber content. As with any food, eat in moderation and always drink plenty of water.