The chia seeds are full of foods value and recently gaining in popularity due to enormous health benefits and weight loss factor. It is extremely high in antioxidants, healthy omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, carbohydrates, protein, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, vitamins and minerals which make it highly nutritious food. It is edible seed and comes from the plant Salvia hispanica, that generally known as chia. Some of The health benefits of chia seeds are discussed below.
Excellent source of fiber
Chia seeds are an excellent source of fiber. Almost all of the carbohydrates in chia seeds are fiber. One ounce or 28 grams of it’s contain 11 grams of nutritional fiber e.g. 40% fiber, by weight whereas true carb is only one gram, hence it can be categorized as low-carb food. For this reason chia seeds have ability to absorb 10-12 times more water by their weight which is as like as gel and rising in our stomach. As the chia seeds are high in fiber, it helps us to maintain a smooth digestive system. Moreover it also supplies the friendly bacteria in the intestine. So health benefits of chia seeds are massive.
Omega-3 fatty acids
Chia seeds are rich in fat. In 100 grams of chia seeds contain nearly 31 grams of fat; most of them are polyunsaturated fats, particularly omega-3 fatty acids (about 18 grams). This is five times more than any top level source of fish oil as like salmon and one of the highest plant-based resources. These omega-3 fatty acids are vital for brain health. The omega-3s fatty acids in chia seeds can also help enhance cognitive and athletic performance, reduce depression, promote efficient nerve transmission, reduce high cholesterol and maintain the health of heart. Moreover it is also important for better absorption of fat soluble vitamins, as like, vitamin A, d, E, and K.
Chia seeds are an excellent source of minerals as like calcium, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus and zinc, copper, iron, potassium and sodium. These nutrients help us prevent hypertension and sustain a healthy weight, and are significant for energy metabolism and a part of DNA synthesis.
The calcium-magnesium combo helps to strong bones and teeth, a healthy nervous system and preventing osteoporosis. Per 100 grams of chia seeds contain about 630-670 mg of calcium and 330-360 mg of magnesium, and they will provide about 65% calcium and 92% magnesium of the daily value.
Manganese is another important mineral for our health. It strong our bones and helps our body to utilize other important nutrients like biotin and thiamin. 100 grams of chia seeds contain about 2.5 mg of manganese, and provide about 120% manganese of the daily value.
Phosphorus in chia seeds helps us to synthesize protein for cell and tissue growth and repair. It is also helpful for our strong bones and teeth. 100 grams of chia seeds contain 770-860mg Phosphorus, and provide about 77-125% Phosphorus of the daily value.
Boron is an essential mineral for transferring calcium to your bones.
Chia seeds contain a huge amount of protein compared to most plants. 100 grams of chia seeds contain 16-17g of protein by weight, and provide about 31% protein of the daily value. It is a great source of protein for vegetarians. As all type of proteins (amino acids) are found in chia seeds, it is call complete protein, that means all nine of amino acids are found that are necessary for our basic biological functions. The protein and calcium combo in chia seeds also help us to build our muscles. Tryptophan, (an amino acid) in chia seeds helps to control appetite, sleep and improve mood.
Chia seeds are a great source of thiamin (vitamin B1) and niacin (vitamin B3). Per 100 grams of chia seeds contain about 0.6-0.8 mg thiamin and 8.60-8.85 mg niacin, and they will provide about 53% thiamin and 50% niacin of the daily value. Both vitamin B1 and B3 are involved in our biological system. Moreover it also contain folic acid(B9), riboflavin (B2), pyridoxine (B6), cobalamin (B12), vitamin A, vitamin C and vitamin E.
Chia seeds are rich in antioxidants and have more than blueberries, grapes, pineapple, mango, noni fruit and carambola. Antioxidants have positive effects on health for example protect the body from free radicals, aging and cancer. Due to high antioxidant they last long (almost two years) without refrigeration. The antioxidants, minerals and vitamins in chia seeds improve our hair and skin and seem to be younger.
Fight Belly Fat
Insulin resistance could be insecure for our health. It is one of the causes for our belly fat. Chia seeds reduce our blood sugar and fight against insulin resistance.
Chia seeds weight loss
A lot of health specialists believe that chia seeds can help us to our weight loss. They logic is that the chia seeds fiber can absorbs huge amount of water and extend in the stomach, which enhance fullness and reduce appetite. It is low in calories. Moreover the glucomannan and chia seeds fiber are works similar way and glucomannan can helps to weight loss. Although one study showed that it has no significant effect on weight loss.
Treatment for type-2 diabetes
It is one of the most significant health benefits of chia seeds. As the chia seeds absorb 10-12 times more water by their weight, this is increase fullness i.e. slow down digestion; hence it helps us to eat smaller amount of calories. Therefore it can play a vital role by reducing insulin resistance in the blood. Consequently it has a significant role on treatment for type-2 diabetes. A study on type 2 diabetic patients also supports this.
Chia seeds are gluten-free diet. Hence the total nutritional benefits of chia seeds could be acquired.
Reduce blood pressure
Chia seeds are rich in essential fatty acids; hence it reduces high blood pressure and can helpful for cardiovascular health.
Although the health benefits of chia seeds are huge, it has some side effects for particular person. These type of people need to be doctor’s permission before taking chia seeds.