Chia seeds come from the desert plant Salvia Hispanica , a member of the mint family. Salvia Hispanica seed often is sold under its common name “chia” as well as several trademarked names. Its origin is believed to be in Central America where the seed was a staple in the ancient Aztec diet. The seeds of a related plant, Salvia columbariae (golden chia), were used primarily by Native Americans in the southwestern United States.
Chia seeds have gained attention as an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acid. They also are an excellent source of dietary fiber at 10 grams per ounce (about 2 tablespoons), and contain protein and minerals including iron, calcium, magnesium and zinc.
Rich in Nutrients:
Despite their small size, chia seeds are packed with nutrients. They are an excellent source of fiber, protein, omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals such as calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus. This nutrient profile makes chia seeds a valuable addition to a balanced diet.
High in Fiber:
Chia seeds are particularly rich in dietary fiber, both soluble and insoluble. Fiber is essential for digestive health, promoting regular bowel movements, and preventing constipation. It also helps regulate blood sugar levels, lower cholesterol levels, and promote feelings of fullness, which can aid in weight management.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids:
Chia seeds are one of the best plant-based sources of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), a type of omega-3 fatty acid. Omega-3 fatty acids are known for their anti-inflammatory properties and are important for heart health, brain function, and overall well-being.
Chia seeds contain antioxidants, including flavonoids, phenolic compounds, and vitamins such as vitamin E. Antioxidants help neutralize harmful free radicals in the body, reducing oxidative stress and lowering the risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease and cancer.
Blood Sugar Control:
The high fiber and protein content of chia seeds can help stabilize blood sugar levels, making them beneficial for individuals with diabetes or those at risk of developing diabetes. Consuming chia seeds with meals can slow down the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream, preventing spikes and crashes in blood glucose levels.
Chia seeds may have protective effects on heart health. Studies have shown that regular consumption of chia seeds can help reduce risk factors for heart disease, such as high cholesterol and triglyceride levels, as well as high blood pressure.
Chia seeds can be a helpful addition to weight loss or weight management plans due to their high fiber and protein content. The combination of fiber and protein helps promote satiety and reduce appetite, potentially leading to lower calorie intake and weight loss over time.
Chia seeds generally do not cause any adverse effects. however A high fiber intake may be associated with negative digestive symptoms like abdominal pain, gas and bloating. Those with inflammatory bowel diseases may need to limit their fiber intake during flare-ups.
How To Use:
Chia seeds can be eaten raw or prepared in a number of dishes. Sprinkle ground or whole chia seeds on cereal, rice, yogurt or vegetables. In Mexico, a drink called chia fresco is made by soaking chia seeds in fruit juice or water. Chia seeds are very absorbent and develop a gelatinous texture when soaked in water making it easy to mix them into cooked cereal or other dishes.
Chia seeds are among the most potent foods on the planet.
They’re stacked with nutrients that are imperative for your body and brain.
These seeds contain ample amounts of fiber and omega-3 fatty acids, plenty of high-quality protein, and various necessary minerals and antioxidants.
By weight, they are 6% water, 46% carbohydrates (of which 83% is fiber), 34% fat, and 19% protein.
100 gms of chia seeds may contain the following nutrients
Raw can be spattered on cereal, yogurt, oatmeal, or smoothies. They can also be consumed cooked, added to baked goods like bread and muffins. You can replace eggs if you are going for vegan baking.
Instead of using egg in your recipes, try blending one tablespoon of chia seeds with three tablespoons of water. After that, let them sit for a few minutes. A gel will form that can be used instead of eggs in baking.
To make a green chia smoothie add one teaspoon of Moringa Powder,1.5 cups of water, and two tablespoons of chia seeds. You can also add a cup of strawberries, blueberries, stevia/honey, and blend. Please soak them before use for at least 1-3 hours.
Consume them on an empty stomach and feel the difference.