Chia Seeds: 8 Surprising Health Benefits Of Chia Seeds
Chia seeds might be tiny, but in terms of nutrition, these little seeds are one of the healthiest foods on the planet. These seeds are placed under the superfood category and for a good reason. For this, we shall get you acquainted with the many health benefits of chia seeds. But before that, let’s take a look at the nutritional value and calorie content of these super seeds. A spoonful of chia seeds, five pounds approximately, contains 69 calories, 4 grams of fat, 2 grams of protein and 5 grams of fiber. The nutritional value of chia seeds further offers a wide range of health benefits. And the best part about these seeds is that they are versatile; there are no specific criteria of consuming these seeds. They can be added to salads, smoothies, vegetable curries and more.
Here’s a list of 8 amazing health benefits of chia seeds you simply cannot miss:
These little seeds are packed with fiber, 5 grams in just a spoonful. With one tablespoon of chia seeds, you can make up for 20% of your daily fiber requirements. Dietary fiber in these seeds helps in lowering your cholesterol levels and boosts your digestive health. It helps in keeping your bowel movements in check and reduces the frequency and occurrence of constipation.
2. Stronger bones
Besides calcium, your bones need phosphorus and magnesium to stay in a good state of health. These nutrients can be obtained from chia seeds. According to a study published in the Nutrition Journal, people who consumed phosphorus were at a 45% lower risk of developing osteoporosis as compared to others. One tablespoon of chia seeds contain 122 mg of phosphorus and 47 mg of magnesium which makes up for 17% and 15% of the daily requirement of these nutrients.
3. Source of complete protein
Complete proteins contain all the essential amino acids required by the human body. These are usually found in animal-based foods. However, chia seeds are a plant-based source of complete proteins. This makes chia seeds the perfect source of protein for vegetarians and vegans. The protein content, however, is not very high. One tablespoon of chia seeds contains only 2 grams of protein. Add it to your pudding, salad, smoothies and other foods to make the most of these seeds.
4. Omega 3 fatty acids
Chia seeds are a rich source of alpha-linolenic acid. It is a type of omega 3 fatty acid which offers protection against heart diseases. This fatty acid cannot be produced by the human body, therefore, it is important to consume it from food sources.
5. Keeps you hydrated
Here’s another good reason to relish a chia drink before going out for a run. Chia seeds soak up a lot of water which is why they help athletes and runners stay hydrated during high endurance sports. One gram of chia seeds can soak up 12 grams of water.
6. Weight loss
Because of the high fiber content, chia seeds make you feel full for longer, thereby cutting down your calorie intake. A study showed that people who consumed 7 to 14 grams of chia seeds ate 25% lesser than what they usually eat. Another reason why these seeds induce satiety is their ability to absorb water. Due to the high water content, they make you feel too full to eat more. Over time, these seeds induce weight loss.
Chia seeds can be a source of calcium for vegans and lactose intolerant people. And if you are a dairy-consumer, simply add these seeds to your milk shake or yogurt to boost your calcium consumption.
8. Benefits for type 2 diabetics
One of the most important benefits of these seeds is its ability to boost the health of type 2 diabetics. It lowers blood pressure and blood sugar levels of the patients considerably. Including chia seeds in the diet can be considerably beneficial for the health of diabetes patients.