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Many people appreciate the benefits of the tiny superfood called chia seeds. They are nutritionally packed, while people enjoy them on cereal or mixed in smoothies.
Salvia hispanica, also known as chia is an Ancient Grain and new functional food originally used by Mayas and Aztecs.(1)
We are going to talk about chia seeds and the many health benefits it offers. Plus using chia seeds for weight loss support and in your day to day life.
Chia seeds give a huge quantity of nutrients with a minimal amount of calories.
The seeds are high in antioxidants and nutrients especially high in omega fats. Also, high in B vitamins, and they’re also high in certain minerals like selenium.
They contain more Omega 3 than any other crops or fish oils with no fishy flavor.
These figures are for an ounce or 28g of seeds.(2)
Total Carbs 12.3g
Dietary Fiber 10.6g
No Starch or Sugars
Total Fat 8.6g
Saturated Fat 0.9g
Monounsaturated Fat 0.6g
Polyunsaturated Fat 6.5g
Total Omega-3 fatty acids 4915mg
Total Omega-6 fatty acids 1620mg
Calcium 177mg 18%
Phosphorus 265mg 27%
Zinc 1.0mg 7%
Chia seeds contain 137 calories per 28 grams or ounce.
Compared to fish or fish oil chia seeds cannot complete on omega-3 fatty acids. It is although, one of the best sources of omega fats from plant sources.
It also contributes essential minerals contains and gives you 18% of your daily calcium, 27% of phosphorus and 7% zinc requirements per ounce consumed.
Health Benefits of Chia Seeds
Studies have shown that chia seeds can be as energizing as consuming sports drinks.
They are great for energy levels because it contains lots of healthy fats and it’s one of the highest plant-based sources of protein and some complex carbohydrates.
The omega 3 fats are particularly high. They reduce inflammation, help fight heart disease, joint pain or arthritis. With anything inflammatory, chia seeds can help with that.
For optimal health, your body needs healthy blood sugar levels. These little superfoods improve adipose tissue dysfunction, glucose tolerance, enhance blood sugar control, and normalizes insulin resistance.(13)(14)(15)
It is simple to replace and include whole or ground chia seeds in your favorite recipes and baked goods for maximum health benefits.(16)
Using Chia Seeds in Recipes
Almost all carbs in chia seeds contain fiber with very little sugar.
You can add chia seeds to various meals and favorite snacks due to their mild and smooth flavor.
They have a unique type of fiber called mucilaginous fiber. When you soak the seeds in liquid, it becomes a gel-like substance which makes it into a great chia seed pudding, desserts, and cakes.
You can make tasty vanilla pudding or chocolate chia puddings using protein powder.
For some of my other favorite recipes using chia seeds, I like to put a few tablespoons in my smoothies and protein shakes.
Moreover, one other unique thing about this little superfood is they can be used to replace eggs.(16)
Sometimes people have food allergies and food sensitivities to dairy. Another reason for replacing eggs with chia seeds is if you are vegan and don’t consume anything from animals.
If you have a recipe you want to try or test out and want to go egg free, consider using chia seeds.
Avoiding eggs and replacing with chia seeds allows you to bake recipes that need a binding agent.
Salvia hispanica can also be a good source of chia seed gel. It is similar to guar gum, and gelatin. The gel possesses great potential in food formulations as a thickening agent, emulsifying agent, and as a stabilizer.(17)
Try mixing one tablespoon of chia seeds to three tablespoons of water mix. You will see it becomes so gelatinous it can replace an egg in any recipe.
To sum it up these little superfoods are loaded with omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, minerals, and dietary fiber.
Numerous studies indicate an increase in health benefits including better digestion and reduction of diabetes and blood pressure.
What are your favorite ways of using chia seeds or how do you like to eat this tiny superfood?