6 Amazing benefits of chia seeds (#3 and #5 are surprising)
How Chia Seeds Can Change Your Life
Do you need to lose weight but hate going to the gym? Well, you are in luck! Science has found out that nutrition is about 70% of total weight loss. So this means you need to focus on what you are putting into your body rather than fitness.
This is where a miracle of nature called chia can help you out, specifically, the seed. What is a chia seed exactly and where does the chia seed come from, you may ask? Also known as Salvia Hispanica, chia seeds are small, oval shaped plants and are part of the mint family.
Their origin comes from either Mexico or Guatemala. They were known to be a great staple food for the Mayans. In fact, the word “chia” translates to “strength” in the ancient Mayan language.
The popularity of Chia seed
In the last decade, people have begun to see the more beneficial use of chia seeds. The chia seed plant can actually be ingested, believe it or not. Chia seeds’ calories per ounce is about 138 calories and these little guys are packed with a ton of balanced, nutritional elements. Plus, they are super easy to incorporate into your everyday meals.
They can be consumed either raw or cooked so adding them to meals is virtually effortless. Chia seeds are tasteless and absorb easily so you can place them in shakes or meals without a second thought. Bakers are known to use chia seeds as substitutions for eggs since they thicken when mixed in liquid.
There are a lot of people who wonder what to do with chia seeds? The answer is simple - you can add it to whatever you want and find that they offer significant benefits all over the spectrum! For more recipes, this article will give you a few which you can use to begin your fitness journey.
Health benefits of chia seeds
We all hear about the benefit of granola or acai berries, but do not overlook the greatness behind chia seeds. What are the benefits of chia seeds and what is chia seed good for? For one, chia seeds’ nutrition facts: 1 tablespoon per serving, packs so many nutrients that you would never imagine could fit into a little seed.
Aside from being so versatile, chia seeds really do have some great benefits for you, healthwise. Read on to see exactly what these little guys can do for you.
#1.Jam Packed With Nutrients
What do the seeds contain, actually? Chia seeds may be small in size but they are generous in the number of nutrients they contain. One serving, about an ounce, contains good amounts of protein, fiber and omega 3 fatty acids. Along with calcium and magnesium, these nutrients are essential to great and optimal health.
Protein helps with building strong and healthy muscles while keeping you full, longer. Fitness competitors and nutritionists have always backed the importance of getting enough protein in your diets.
With about 4.5 grams per serving, chia seeds can easily add that extra protein you need in your morning smoothie. Since chia seeds have a good amount of amino acids, they also help your body to absorb the protein correctly and efficiently.
Chia seeds have a whopping 10 grams of fiber per ounce in a serving. How much fiber in chia seeds are actually good for you? Well, the daily recommended amount of fiber overall, according to health professionals, is anywhere between 25 to 35 grams.
When adding just one ounce of chia seeds to one meal, you will have consumed about 1/3 of the amount suggested in just one meal. Fiber helps move material through your body properly. This means that it will help regulate your bowel movements and prevent you from developing constipation.
Along with protein, it also helps you feel full and satiated. Not to mention, fiber is also great for your alertness so go ahead and start adding those chia seeds to your morning smoothies or creating at-home healthy puddings to ensure you are productive all morning long.
The Omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants help with fighting inflammation. Inflammation can cause issues such as joint pain, muscle pain, cell build up and so much more. Chia seeds contain nearly 5,000 mg of omega 3s per serving. The recommended amount is 250 mg a day! Omega-3s are good for your heart and overall cardiovascular health.
Typically, you would get this nutrient by consuming a lot of fish, but if seafood is not necessarily your forte, chia seeds would be a great substitute while giving you the same benefits. They can help with reducing your bad cholesterol levels as well as lowering your blood pressure. Plus, the antioxidants help to protect you from free radicals that can be harmful to your skin and organs. Who knew that a simple seed could actually reduce your risk of heart complications, and potentially, save your life?
#2.Aids in Weight Loss
Since chia seeds have so much fiber packed into them, they also help you with feeling fuller, longer. Weight gain tends to stem from individuals who are stressed and/or snack on food throughout the day. The more stress you feel, and the less sleep that you get, usually causes you to binge eat.
Adding chia seeds can help with not only making you feel full, but do so for longer periods of time. Your appetite is reduced, thus, you are less likely to overeat since you feel satiated. This also helps boost your energy level since it takes your body longer to break down the nutrient packed seeds, leaving you more focused and less likely to reach for unhealthy snacks.
A great way to lose weight with chia seeds is to add it to your drinks, whether they be water or protein shakes. This is a great strategy on how to drink chia seeds to lose weight. A great recipe you might try is simply just adding seeds to some water and lemon.
Be cautious, though. Just like any other healthy food out there, calories are still calories so chia seeds should also be consumed in moderation. How much chia seeds per day you can consume is not very limited since it is so healthy, but, of course you do not want to overdo it.
You might be tempted to do so after reading about all the health benefits, but use your judgment and consume according to what your body can handle! The great thing is that chia seeds are an all-natural food, so even eating more of it as opposed to a serving of potato chips, which may be less in calories, is better because you will know that you are consuming real ingredients versus processed ones. Chia seeds’ weight loss benefits are truly endless and should be incorporated into your weight loss goals immediately.
#3.Prevents Diabetes and Controls Blood Sugar
The high levels of fiber and Omega-3s promote a very healthy metabolic rate in the human body. This is very good for the regulation of normal blood sugar levels and decreasing your risk for diabetes. The most optimum time to have chia seeds is either for breakfast or lunch. This way, your day meals help to keep your blood sugar levels regular without spiking throughout the day.
If you have ever felt a sugar rush and crash after, it is because your blood sugar levels are all out of whack. When blood sugar levels are low, it causes you to reach for food items that are high in fat and sugar. You may also feel fatigued and disoriented which are all signs of poor nutrition.
Chia seeds help alleviate those cravings. For individuals who suffer from type 2 diabetes, this is essential to regulating their levels of blood sugar and reducing insulin resistance. As mentioned, chia seeds take a longer time for your body to convert carbohydrates to sugar.
Even chia seed carbs are good for you at this point. This process is very helpful for someone whose life depends on the slow digestion of sugar content. The slower the digestive process, the easier it is for you to maintain healthy levels of energy.
#4.Great for Your Bones and Teeth
A particular nutrient that many people do not get enough of, especially women, is that of calcium. As we age, calcium deficiency becomes a major problem and can lead to osteoporosis and unhealthy posture. For those who are lactose intolerant, it becomes even more difficult to get enough calcium due to not being able to consume dairy products on a regular basis.
This is where chia seeds come in to save the day. In just one serving of chia seeds, you can get up to 18% of the recommended calcium dosage. Since chia seeds are also high in protein and other bone-strengthening nutrients, it only makes sense that these little guys help to keep your bones and teeth strong and healthy.
Instead of taking calcium supplements that are laden with chemicals and unknown ingredients, try just adding chia seeds to every meal to find your levels of calcium consumption go up more than ever before. Now, there really is a solution for those who could not ingest dairy products for calcium benefits.
#5.Boost Your Workouts, Energy and Mood
For all the fitness junkies, it would make you extremely pleased to hear that chia seeds are a great addition to your fitness regimen. Stay away from those jitter inducing energy drinks and instead, add some chia seeds to your water or pre and post workout shakes.
Chia seeds are odorless and tasteless so it would be very difficult, if not impossible, to notice any difference in your current drinks you use for fitness. Adding these little miracle seeds will help keep you on your fitness goals. You will start to notice a difference in your energy levels as chia seeds work to repair and maintain your muscles and endurance.
Boosting your mood is also important, especially for those afternoon slumps. Try adding some seeds to your water in the afternoon and observe the difference in your mood levels. Chia seeds contain tryptophan, the same chemical that induces sleepiness from eating turkey, which in turn, produces serotonin.
Serotonin is the chemical that balances mood and happiness. Chia seeds will begin working through your system and also, naturally hydrate your body evenly. This will then affect your mood in a positive way since you will now feel more alert and less sluggish.
So, do chia seeds give you energy? They do more than just that. They give you that extra boost without making you feel guilty about consuming ingredients from energy drinks that you cannot even pronounce.
#6.Naturally Grown Food
The big question might be, “Is chia seed bad for you?” Absolutely not. Forget all the silver bullets out there that claim to change your life. The chia seed is an all-natural plant that is actually good for you. No need to look up the ingredients list for this amazing little seed.
When grown, it does not require any type of genetically modified organism, aka GMO, to produce or sustain itself. It also does not need to be sprayed with any harmful pesticides which are one of the most dangerous chemicals in our foods today.
You can be certain that when you consume chia seeds, they are a real food and will break down in your body properly. Because chia seeds pack so many nutrients that people tend to be deficient in, it would be a good idea to start throwing them into meals instead of relying on dense, supplements that claim to give you the same support.
These are just some of the major reasons that help answer the questions that may have lingered in your mind before, “Are chia seeds healthy or are chia seeds bad for you?.” The answer is a definitive NO to being bad for you.
Hopefully, after reading about all of these amazing health benefits, you will probably get yourself on a chia seeds diet, pronto. Then, you can start enlisting your friends and family to do so as well. Especially once you learn how to incorporate them more into your foods, you will be glad that you learned how to eat chia seeds and at the same time, wonder why you did not do it sooner.
Health benefit of granola and chia seeds are significant and ideally you should be consuming them both when you get the chance. Do you really need any more reasons as to why are chia seeds good for you? Jump on the bandwagon and watch these little seeds change your life.