A few years ago chia seeds were found only in health food stores and eaten mainly by those considered “health nuts” by their peers. As the health benefits of chia seeds become more well-known, they are moving into the main stream. Everyone from recreational athletes and active moms to health conscious teens and seniors are including chia seeds in their diets. Read on to learn more.
Chia seeds are comparable to other “super” foods in that they deliver maximum nutrients for minimal calories. Anyone who has ever dieted understands the importance of foods such as this. Reducing calories should not mean reducing nutrition. The more high-nutrient low-calorie foods you include in your diet the healthier your weight loss journey. Though research has shown chia seeds do not directly trigger weight loss, they are a healthy addition to your diet and allow you to replace unhealthy foods without growing bored.
Chia seeds are similar to flax seed. They are packed with protein and also contain omega 3 fatty acids, antioxidants, and calcium. Chia contains a great deal of fiber which provides a feeling of fullness without overeating. The seeds are capable of absorbing more than 10 times their weight in water. They expand in your stomach and help reduce caloric intake because they leave no room for snacking and overeating.
Chia Seeds are Versatile
One of the most advantageous benefits of chia seeds is their ability to taste like just about anything. So many people falter on their diets because they dislike the bitter taste of greens or cannot stomach several liters of water everyday. Chia seeds can be flavored in any way you choose. You can add them to pudding, mix them with juice, or blend them with water and natural flavoring. Once you add water, they form a type of jelly that keeps you feeling full, but tastes like an indulgent snack. Most people like to enjoy chia seeds with sweet flavors and there are many pre-made chia snacks available that are great options when you are on the go.
Chia Seeds Help Balance Blood Sugar
Not only are chia seeds great for dieting and preventing weight-related health problems, they can directly help you prevent and manage diabetes. This is because chia seeds help you balance blood sugar levels. The gelling action of chia seeds is caused by its soluble and insoluble fiber content. Eating chia seeds combined with starchy foods helps your body slow its conversion of those starches into sugar. Adding chia to a typical meal supports your body in converting food to a slow, steady stream of energy, instead of a spike and dip in blood sugar.
Chia Seeds Support Healthy Digestion
Fiber is one of the best things you can include in your diet to promote healthy digestion. Today, many people suffer from digestive conditions caused by over processed foods. Despite the amount of food people eat many lack the fiber they need on a daily basis to keep their digestive system healthy.
Chia seeds provide both soluble and insoluble fiber. They are a great substitute if you are unable or unwilling to eat excessive amounts of vegetables and whole grains. The fiber in the seeds keep the colon hydrated and helps food move through the digestive system.
Chia Seeds are Great for Heart Health
The fiber content in chia seeds helps lower bad cholesterol, but the seeds feature other health healthy benefits. Chia contains omega 3 fatty acids. The seeds are an excellent vegetarian substitute for fish or fish oil supplements. Chia offers the highest amount of omega-3 from a plant source and actually contains more omega-3 than salmon when compared by weight.
Chia Seeds Boost Your Energy Levels
Chia seeds are a complete protein. Unlike some popular vegetarian protein sources, such as peanut butter and nuts, they offer a complete blend of essential fatty acids, and also contain minerals and vitamins. Chia’s ability to balance your blood sugar also ensures you do not experience a crash after your energy burst.
Chia Seeds are Considered an Anti-Cancer Food
Chia seeds contain antioxidants. Antioxidants are a variety of substances that are known for combating the cancer-causing free radicals that damage your cells. Many foods, especially fruits and vegetables, contain antioxidants and are an important part of a healthy diet. Unfortunately, fresh fruits and vegetables have a short shelf life. Not so with chia seeds. Stored at room temperature, chia seeds remain fresh for at least two years. Even other types of seeds do not offer this benefit. There are very few foods capable of this type of longevity without dangerous chemicals and preservatives.
Not only do antioxidants aid in the prevention of cancer, they also prevent other free radical damage, such as premature aging and inflammation.
Chia Seeds Help You Curb Cravings when Dieting
Food cravings are caused by a variety of factors, but one of the most common is nutrition deficiency. Unfortunately, many people feed their cravings with the wrong foods. Chia seeds are not only a great way to satiate your cravings they also prevent future cravings. No matter what signals your body is sending, chia can help you squelch its desire to eat foods that are poor choices.
Chia Seeds are a Low-Fat Alternative
Not only do chia seeds make a great addition to snacks and meals, they are a great replacement for unhealthy ingredients in many of your favorite recipes. They are an excellent substitute for butter, so you can use them to bake healthier goodies. Just swap half the butter called for in your favorite cookie or cake recipe with an equivalent amount of chia gel. This makes the treat healthier and it also extends its freshness. Best of all, most people report the addition of chia is barely noticeable and in some cases, even improves the taste of the final product.
People are always looking for simple ways to improve the health of their diets. They do not want complicated recipes or expensive ingredients. Chia seeds are one of the most practical, beneficial additions to a diet and can truly provide a life-altering effect.
Useful Tips: Make sure that you always use Organic Raw Chia Seeds.
Navitas Naturals Organic Raw Chia Seeds, 16-Ounce Pouches