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The Health Benefits of Chia Seeds

The health-protecting antioxidants contained in chia seeds are known to protect against oxidative stress. Oxidative stress is an imbalance in the production of cell-damaging free radicals and the body’s ability to counteract their harmful effects. This helps to ward off aging and protects the brain from oxidative stress, which is a causative factor in diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. The anti-inflammatory effect also supports the health of the skin and plays a further role in protecting the heart. [Sources: 4]

Chia seeds and chia flour have been found to lower blood pressure and hypertension, the effects of which are relevant for both drug and non-drug participants. The inclusion of chia seeds in your diet seems to have cardioprotective benefits, thanks to their polyunsaturated fatty acid content, high fiber content and anti-inflammatory properties. Chia seeds are also a rich source of minerals known to be beneficial to bone health, including calcium, magnesium and phosphorus. A 25 g portion of chia seeds contains 158 mg of calcium, which makes a significant contribution compared to a corresponding amount of milk. [Sources: 7]

Chia Seeds Health Benefits
Health Benefits of Chia Seeds

The protein in chia seeds can help reduce appetite and food intake. In fact, one study found that eating chia seeds for breakfast increases satiety and reduces food intake in the short term (17). However, another study investigating the efficacy of chia seeds for weight loss produced disappointing results. [Sources: 0]

In a study of 90 overweight people, 50 grams of chia seeds a day for 12 weeks had no effect on body weight or health (18). In a 10-week study with 62 women, chia seeds had no effect on body weight, but increased the amount of fat in the blood (19). In contrast, a six-month study of obese people with type 2 diabetes on a low-calorie diet found that eating chia seeds caused greater weight loss than a placebo (20). Although chia seeds alone are unlikely to lead to weight loss, many experts believe it can be a useful addition to a weight loss diet. [Sources: 0]

One ounce of chia seeds provides 10 grams of fiber, which has been the daily recommendation for women for at least 50 years. High-fibre foods help people feel full for longer because they are lower in calories. Increasing fiber intake in a high-fiber diet has been shown to be helpful in weight loss. Chia seeds contain about 5 grams of fiber per table.Their high content of omega-3 fatty acids, such as alpha-linoleic acid, can also be useful for weight loss. [Sources: 2]

The fiber in chia seeds is soluble fiber and mucus, a substance responsible for the sticky texture and moisturizing of the seeds. These fibres can help to lower LDL cholesterol, slow digestion, prevent blood sugar spikes after eating and promote satiety. [Sources: 1]

Chia seeds contain several components that, as part of a balanced, plant-rich diet, can prevent the development of various chronic diseases. Of particular interest to researchers are chia seeds, which have a high alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) content. Sixty percent of the oil in chia seeds comes from ALA. Animal and human studies have shown that ALA fatty acids have positive effects on cardiovascular health by lowering cholesterol, regulating heart rhythm and blood pressure, preventing blood clots and reducing inflammation. [Sources: 1]

For more ways to incorporate antioxidants into your diet, see our roundup of the best antioxidant foods. This type of antioxidant in chia seeds is known for its anti-aging and anti-cancer effects. It can also contribute to other health benefits associated with chia seeds, such as heart health, anti-inflammatory and immunity. A 2014 study found that chia seeds have more than twice as much antioxidant activity as previously thought. [Sources: 3]

It is a cool little powerhouse of a seed that contains many nutrients such as phosphorus, protein and calcium. Whether it’s calcium or something else, chia seeds can benefit your bones. Controlled studies suggest that bone health and bone density can be improved through diet and supplements such as chia seeds. [Sources: 6]

As already mentioned, these powerful seeds are packed with several key nutrients linked to bone health, including calcium, magnesium, phosphorus and manganese. It is the combination of these nutrients, in addition to other nutrients and regular physical activity, that protects bone density. The calcium content in chia seeds makes them a good source of important minerals for those who prefer to avoid dairy products. [Sources: 4]

One of the best advantages of chia seeds is that they can be easily integrated into your diet. You don’t have to grind them like flaxseeds to make them digestible. They can be mixed in a liquid, making them a simple and quick addition of nutrients to a variety of foods. One thing to keep in mind is that chia seeds are rich in fiber, so it’s best to add it to your daily regimen. However, if you already consume a lot of fiber, you are fine. [Sources: 6]

They can be seen in puddings, used in smoothies or sprinkled on oatmeal. Chia seeds are small, but they actually pack a healthy punch. Research supports the many health benefits of chia seeds. [Sources: 3]

Chia seeds are tiny black seeds of Salvia hispanica, a plant related to mint. They are a whole grain full of fiber and protein. Each ounce contains 11 grams of fiber and 5 grams of protein. Chia means “strength” in the Mayan language and is known as running food for runners and warriors who used it as food when they travelled long distances in battle. [Sources: 5]

There are not many studies on the effect of chia on blood sugar and insulin resistance, but a 2017 study suggests that chia seeds have the ability to convert glucose into slow-releasing carbohydrates. This can have a positive effect on people with type 2 diabetes. [Sources: 2]

Sources

[0]: https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/11-proven-health-benefits-of-chia-seeds
[1]: https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/food-features/chia-seeds/
[2]: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/291334
[3]: https://www.eatingwell.com/article/2059841/health-benefits-of-chia-seeds/
[4]: https://www.health.com/food/chia-seed-benefits
[5]: https://integrisok.com/resources/on-your-health/2019/november/the-health-benefits-of-chia-seeds
[6]: https://www.asweetpeachef.com/benefits-of-chia-seeds/
[7]: https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/howto/guide/health-benefits-chia-seeds