Have you ever tried chia seeds? Touted as the ultimate superfood, these tiny seeds pack a lot of nutrition. They provide more fiber, essential fatty acids, and protein per serving than most foods. Their delicious flavor is a welcomed bonus! Chia seeds are best known for their ability to suppress hunger and increase satiety. However, their benefits go beyond appetite control. This superfood can naturally boost your energy, scavenge free radicals, and fight inflammation. What Are Chia Seeds?
These tiny seeds come from a plant called Salvia hispanica
. They have been around for thousands of years, offering both nutrition and flavor. Aztec and Mayan warriors ate them to get the energy and strength needed on the battlefield. Actually, their name means "strength" in the Mayan language. Modern research confirms the health benefits of chia seeds. This superfood is loaded with protein, omega-3s, vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber. Protein accounts for over 11 percent of their total weight. One serving provides:
- 137 calories
- 4 g protein
- 3 g carbs
- 6 g fiber
- 30% of the RDA of manganese
- 27% of the RDA of phosphorus
- 7% of the RDA of zinc
- 18% of the RDA of calcium
- 4915mg Omega-3 fatty acids
Due to their high fiber content, these seeds absorb water in the GI tract, keeping you full for hours. They're a healthy addition to puddings, porridge, salad, vegetable dishes, smoothies, and baked goods. You can eat them raw, use them in juices, or add them to your favorite meals. Plus, the seeds are usually grown organically and contain no gluten. The Surprising Benefits of Chia Seeds
Despite their small size, chia seeds are a powerhouse of nutrition. First of all, they're rich in antioxidants
that scavenge oxidative stress and slow the aging process. Some studies indicate that they actually contain more antioxidants than berries. Most of the carbs in chia seeds are fiber. This nutrient regulates blood sugar, promotes satiety, and slows digestion. If you're struggling with hunger or trying to lose weight, chia seeds will do the trick. Additionally, they're high in protein, which further suppresses hunger and cravings while boosting your metabolism. The essential fats in these seeds may prevent and reduce inflammation. They also protect against heart disease and lower bad cholesterol levels. Your brain needs omega-3s to function at its peak and create new neurons. Chia seeds are an excellent source of minerals. They contain large amounts of phosphorus, which supports bone health and balances your body's pH levels. Manganese, another key mineral in chia seeds, promotes metabolic health and tissue growth. Selenium keeps your thyroid healthy and reduces free radical levels in the body. Calcium strengthens your bones and regulates nerve function. These seeds also boast natural compounds that support health and well-being. Caffeic acid
, for instance, has powerful anti-inflammatory properties. Chlorogenic acid keeps your blood pressure low, which helps decrease the risk of heart disease. Kaempferol has been linked to a lower risk of cancer and cardiovascular problems. Without a doubt, chia seeds deserve the superfood status. Low in calories and packed with nutrients, they can improve your health on every level. Their mild, nutty flavor will make your favorite treats taste better and add nutrition to your diet.