Have you ever heard of chia seeds? You might have not. But let us tell you, these small black chia seeds are so healthy that it should never be judged for their size. Chia seeds belong to the mint family and are originated in Mexico. Though it is cultivated and grown mainly for its oil, even the seeds are filled with nutrition that benefits health in most unexpected ways!
Being one of the best sources of fiber and protein, chia seeds offer great help to your body as well as mind. It has very few calories and can be consumed quickly, combining it with almost anything. Though it has a decent amount of carbohydrates, most of them are fiber and hence adds up to improve your health.
Today, we are going to give you some great reasons and ways to add them up in your daily life and be healthier in the easiest way one could ever have.
Let us have a look at what it consists of that makes it a great example of “good things come in small packages”.
Nutrition Facts of Chia Seeds
Amount Per 100 grams
Total Fat 31 g 47%
Saturated fat 3.3 g 16%
Polyunsaturated fat 24 g
Monounsaturated fat 2.3 g
Trans fat regulation 0.1 g
Cholesterol 0 mg 0%
Sodium 16 mg 0%
Potassium 407 mg 11%
Total Carbohydrate 42 g 14%
Dietary fiber 34 g 136%
Protein 17 g 34%
Vitamin A 1%
Vitamin C 2%
Being loaded with many minerals and vitamins, chia seeds are known to be one of the best ways to lead a healthy and happy life. Dietary fiber plays a vital role in making it healthier and is one of the main reasons for most of it. Let us go through what we are going to discuss today.
Topics to be covered:
- Health Benefits
- Skin Benefits
- Hair Benefits
- Fighting-off diseases
- Consuming Chia Seeds
Health Benefits of Chia Seeds:
Chia seeds provide many incredible benefits. Discussing health benefits, fibers are the most active participant in most of its benefits. From aiding digestion to improving mental health, chia seeds are there to help you. Here are the health benefits of chia seeds:
- Chia seeds help in aiding digestion. This is done by regulating bowel movements and making it regular that is required for a healthy regular excretion of toxins and waste from the body. It has enough dietary fibers that help with all this and keep digestion healthy.
- Chia seeds become a vital ingredient in weight loss journey as it contains fiber in a high amount that makes your stomach craving-free for longer. Also, it is less in calories and cuts out other calories by reducing frequent meals. It is being stated that a high fiber and omega-3 fatty acids diet helps with weight loss.
- Keeping your heart healthy is another job done by chia seeds. Its high fiber content keeps blood pressure low and reduces the level of LDL or bad cholesterol in the body. Both of which play a huge role in a healthy heart.
- Chia seeds have shown amazing positive effects on type2 diabetic patients. High fiber content regulates blood sugar level making it stable and hence prevents diabetes as well. Also, chia seeds convert glucose into slow-release carbs that help with insulin resistivity.
- Chia seeds can be a fantastic source of protein for vegetarians who don’t get any animal protein. It fulfils the body’s need for protein and keeps protein-deficient problems away.
- Anyone will be amazed by the fact that chia seeds contain more calcium than any dairy product. Also, it has phosphorus, magnesium, and proteins that take care of bones and teeth, making it healthier and more robust.
- Chia seeds have some significant effects on the brain as well. Omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids of chia seeds enhance memory power, increases concentration, and helps to learn new things.
- Other than the brain, chia seeds ensure good mental health. It has enough magnesium content to decrease cortisol levels that in return, uplifts your mood. Also, a lack of magnesium is known to be one of the reasons for headaches and constant tiredness. Chia seeds contain an amino acid named tryptophan that tackles anxiety and keeps depression away.
Benefits of Chia Seeds for Skin:
We know it’s hard to believe that the “seeds” are beneficial to not only your health but skin as well, but it is! From hydrating your skin to making it young and clear, chia seeds pack, or oil is always helpful. Here are some of the skin benefits of chia seeds:
- Despite being a seed, chia seeds hydrate your skin cells and moisturize it. The best thing about chia seeds oil is that it doesn’t make skin oily and loaded with oil, instead of its light. And proved to be great for people with dry or flaky skin problems.
- Being high in omega fatty acids, chia seeds remove acne and other small bumps from your face making it more transparent and smoother. It protects you from acne and has a healing effect.
- Dark spots or sunburn or pigmentation, all of them are healed up with chia seeds. Not only it heals up damage but fights off free radicals coming from UV rays reducing or eliminating its effect. Using chia seeds oil or a face mask is best.
- Having premature aging signs is the worst to happen but no worries, chia seeds are always there to help you out! Omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids help in reducing wrinkles, fine lines and tones up saggy skin cells, strengthening it up by fighting off free radicals.
- Flaky or cracked skin can increase anyone’s stress, but chia seeds’ cooling effect will get this done to you. Fatty acids help in healing up damaged skin and reduce itchiness caused by the same making it smoother with regular use. The cooling effect reduces inflammation, as well. All this makes it best for winter or dry skin.
Benefits of Chia Seeds for Hair
Though the shreds of evidence are limited, it is found that chia seeds help hair become healthier than ever. Vitamin E, protein and other nutrients play their role respectively benefitting your hair in different ways. Here are some of the hair benefits of chia seeds:
- Numerous reasons cause hair problems, and one of them is scalp infection. It might be due to pollution, collected dirt, some hair product, etc. but can be encountered with chia seeds. As it contains zinc that repairs any damage caused and copper that reduces and prevents thin hair.
- Chia seeds contain all the essential amino acids to help to strengthen hair strands. High vitamin E and fatty acids thicken your hair, making it more beautiful. Also, it has proteins that fulfil the hair’s needs and adds to its health.
- You don’t even know what the hurdle between your hair and its growth is but chia seeds still help you out. While omega fatty acids trigger hair follicles, iron improves blood circulation throughout the scalp that promotes hair growth. High protein and phosphorus content adds up to enhance its activity.
- Frizzy hair can be challenging to manage and style as well. Trying chia seeds with water that makes up to be gel-like material on hair strands can make it manageable and less frizzy.
How Chia Seeds helps in Fighting off Diseases
Don’t be a fool to judge chia seeds on their size! It can amaze you more with its benefits, and we are here to provide the same.
As stated, chia seeds help excretion and maintain regularity; it eliminates the problem of constipation quickly due to the presence of dietary fibres.
Chia seeds have an anti-inflammatory property that fights-off all the inflammation problems, including arthritis, metabolic syndrome, and other types of inflammation.
As stated, chia seeds are loaded with calcium that fulfils the body’s need for it to some extent. This eliminates the risk of bone-related problems like osteoporosis. Also, the consumption of chia seeds is advisable to those who are sufferers as it may reduce or stop its growth.
Skin problems can be caused due to different reasons, and one of them is a lack of essential fatty acids. The use of chia seed oil eliminates eczema and other such issues as it provides enough fatty acids.
Chia seeds play a vital role in preventing and fighting-off several heart problems. It has omega 3 that prevents thrombosis and arrhythmias. These are the disorders that trigger a heart attack, stroke, hypertension, etc. Also, omega 3 improves the functioning of endothelium that regulates blood pressure, blood clotting, and heart rate.
It’s shocking and amazing to state that chia seeds can help prevent some specific types of cancer to some extent, breast cancer is the most claimed one to be prevented. This is because chia seeds contain omega 3 fatty acids and ALA acid that fight off free radicals and cancerous cells.
Side-effects of Chia Seeds
- Allergy is possible in the case of chia seeds; if a person experiences vomiting or itching on lips or tongue, then it is best to get diagnosed. Avoid in any such cases.
- Though chia seeds regulate bowel movement and ensure healthy digestion, an excess of fiber can lead to various gut problems like bloating, diarrhea, constipation, pain, or gas.
- Though omega fatty acids are excellent for your health, it’s excess along with medication of blood-thinning can mead to severe problems. And the same goes for blood pressure medication.
- Since chia seeds help in lowering blood sugar levels and improving insulin resistance, it can create more problems if taken with diabetes medication as it can lead to a too low level of blood sugar and cause other problems.
- Though a limited amount of chia seeds is healthy for both mother and baby during pregnancy, its excess can cause constipation that is common during pregnancy. It is advisable not to experiment if it suits you and consults a doctor.
Adding Chia Seeds in meals
The best thing about chia seeds is that it is easier and maybe most comfortable to be added in meals. Be it sweet or spicy or sour; it can be combined with anything.
Adding a teaspoon or a few pinches of grated chia seeds in shakes, smoothies, coffees, and beverages is the easiest way. It doesn’t affect the taste as well and still benefits you.
Chia seeds along with water become a gel-like substance, and hence it is often used as egg-substitute in a bakery. Because of its texture, it is added to gravies to thicken it smoothly without affecting the taste.
Also, a sprinkling of grated chia seeds in flavored dips and salads add texture to it.
There is no problem in sprinkling them in almost anything. Be it pizza base, cookies, ice cream, jam or any such thing is just amazing.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q1. How much chia seeds should be consumed in a day?
- A total of 3 tablespoons (40 grams) is ideal. It is better to consume it in different parts and in different ways.
Q2. What is the best time to have chia water?
- Mix a spoonful of powdered chia seeds in water and consume it in the morning to have excellent benefits.
Q3. How long should chia seeds be soaked?
- It is ideal for soaking chia seeds in water or almond milk overnight, but even 20 minutes would activate enough its activity to increase its potential.
Q4. Should chia seeds be consumed on an empty stomach?
- Having chia seeds water in the morning on an empty stomach is ideal for weight loss and other benefits. Also, it is one of the best times and ways of consuming it.
Q5. Does chia seeds make you poop?
- Yes. Chia seeds regulate bowel movements, clears the digestive tract, and smoothens up wastes to be removed. This makes pooping easier.
Q6. Is it OK to consume chia seeds before bed or at night?
- Yes. It helps relieve stress by increasing levels of melatonin and serotonin. This helps to have better, deeper, and sound sleep.
Q7. Should chia seeds be refrigerated?
- Yes. Refrigerating chia seeds is the only right way of preventing its oxidation and make it last longer.
Q8. How long should chia seeds be refrigerated?
- Chia seeds can be refrigerated for up to 3 months. It won’t affect its productivity of life and can be used without any hesitation.
If you are still in doubt whether to add it or not, please find a valid excuse. If adding in a meal is something stopping you from doing it, that’s the easiest job as stated above! Add a get few tablespoons of chia seeds in your daily life and get tank-full benefits. Just keep a few points of side effects in your mind and go for it! Choose healthily, be healthy.