Chia seeds are tiny but mighty seeds with a number of health benefits. They’ve taken the health and wellness world by storm, popping up in everything from protein bars to beverages to nut butter and featured in different recipes. Read to find out what Chia Seeds are and why you should start eating them.
What are Chia Seeds?
While Chia seeds are a relatively new culinary addition to many parts of the world, these small black & White seeds from the plant Salvia hispanica have actually been cultivated as a food source since around 3,500 B.C Don’t be fooled by their small size, Chia seeds are packed with nutrients. Just o2 tablespoons of Chia Seeds contain a significant amount of plant-based omega-3 fatty acids, protein, antioxidants, minerals and fiber. Chia seeds also contain mucilage, a form of fiber that becomes gelatinous and gooey when exposed to liquid. That makes Chia Seeds great for making for pudding and it also acts as a natural thickening agent in jam recipes.
Health benefits of Chia Seeds Promotes good digestion & Ease Constipation
Chia seeds are high in fibre. 2 tablespoons of Chia seeds contain 10 grams of fiber or 40 percent of your recommended daily intake (RDI). Most of the fiber in chia seeds are also considered insoluble fiber, which means it adds bulk to the stool and helps food pass more quickly through the stomach and intestines. This keeps digestion running smoothly and may help ease constipation—ensure that you are drinking enough water as well,
Curb Cravings & help Balance Blood Sugar
Chia seeds contain protein, fiber, and healthy fats—the perfect mix for boosting satiety and stabilizing blood sugar. This is important, as erratic and chronically elevated blood sugar levels are associated with an increased risk of diabetes and heart disease. Studies have found that after eating Chia seeds, people experience a lower post-meal spike in blood glucose and increased feelings of fullness compared to eating Chia. Because of a reduction in cravings, adding Chia seeds into your diet helps weight management as well.
Help Improve Cardiovascular Health
The nutrients found in Chia have a positive impact on overall cardiovascular health. Chia seeds are jam-packed with insoluble fiber. That is the type of fiber associated with reduced rates of cardiovascular disease. Chia seeds are also a great source of the plant-based omega-3 fatty acid alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), which has anti-inflammatory effects on the body.
Help Ease Anxiety & Promote Good Sleep
What do you about magnesium — and why is it important in your body? Magnesium is responsible for a number of biochemical reactions in the body, yet many of us aren’t consuming the recommended amount in our diets. For most people, an insufficient level of magnesium leads to insomnia, anxiety and sugar cravings. This can be remedied by incorporating high-magnesium foods in your diet, for instance, Chia seeds— just 2 tablespoons contain 23 percent of your RDI, the highest of nearly any food.
Bone Strengthening Minerals
Other than magnesium, Chia seeds are an amazing source of the calcium. They contain 179 mg of calcium or 18 percent of your RDI, in just 2 tablespoons. Calcium, as you well know, is important for building strong bones. Tip: Other great non-dairy sources of calcium include sardines and cooked leafy greens such as kale and spinach.
The simplest way to add Chia to your diet is to add 2 tablespoons of Chia a glass of plain or lemon water, let it sit for 30 minutes and drink it. You can also add it to smoothies or your breakfast bowl. Here are a few Chia recipes you can try out.