Chia seeds, also known as Salba chia or Mexican chia, are the edible seeds of a mint-family flowering plant. Mexico and Guatemala are their native countries.
Chia is now grown commercially in a number of countries, including Mexico, Guatemala, and the United States.
The seeds are well-known for being a nutrient-dense addition to healthy diets.
Chia seeds are a great source of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
Among these antioxidants are kaempferol, quercetin, Caffeic acid, and chlorogenic acid. These nutrients contribute to a variety of significant health benefits.
Chia Seeds Health Benefits
Here are 6 scientifically proven health benefits of chia seeds.
1. Fight Free Radicals
Chia seeds contain antioxidants that can help your body fight free radicals. Free radicals are responsible for oxidative stress and cell damage.
Eating antioxidant-rich foods may help to lower your risk of developing many health problems associated with free radicals, such as heart disease, cognitive decline, and certain types of cancer.
2. Chia Seeds Benefits for Diabetes
Chia seeds may aid in blood sugar regulation due to their fiber content and other beneficial compounds.
Diabetes patients may have high blood sugar levels. High fasting blood sugar levels are linked to an increased risk of a variety of complications, including heart disease.
Chia seeds contain a lot of fiber. Fiber has been shown in studies to help reduce insulin resistance and improve blood sugar levels, lowering your risk of metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes.
According to research, bread containing chia seeds causes a lower blood sugar response than traditional bread, which aids in the prevention of high blood sugar levels.
3. Chia Seeds Benefits Weight Loss
Chia seeds contain fiber and protein, which may aid in weight loss.
A 1-ounce serving of chia seeds contains 39% of your daily fiber allowance.
When you eat the seeds, the soluble fiber in them absorbs water, causing them to expand in your stomach and increase your feeling of fullness. Chia seeds can help you maintain a healthy weight by making you feel fuller while eating less.
In one study of 24 people, eating 14 grams of chia seeds mixed with yogurt for breakfast increased feelings of fullness and reduced food intake in the short term when compared to eating chia-free yogurt.
A 6-month study of 77 people with overweight or obesity and type 2 diabetes who ate a low-calorie diet found that those who took chia seeds daily lost significantly more weight than those who got a placebo.
4. For Better Heart Health
Chia seeds contain quercetin, an antioxidant that can lower your risk of developing a variety of health problems, including heart disease.
Chia seeds are also high in omega-3 fatty acids, which may lower your risk of heart disease.
The seeds are also high in fiber, which can help lower blood pressure and, as a result, lower your risk of developing heart disease.
Soluble fiber, such as that found in chia seeds, can help lower total and bad cholesterol levels in the blood. As a result, your risk of heart disease may be reduced.
A few studies found that chia seed supplements significantly reduced blood pressure in people with hypertension, also known as high blood pressure, which is a major risk factor for heart disease.
5. Reduced Inflammation
Chronic inflammation, which is often caused by poor eating habits and a lack of exercise, can wreak havoc on the body.
Chronic inflammation can lead to diseases such as heart disease and cancer.
Chia seeds have anti-inflammatory properties. Caffeic acid, an antioxidant found in chia seeds, may aid in the reduction of inflammation in the body.
Consuming chia seeds on a regular basis may also aid in the reduction of inflammatory markers, which frequently indicate the presence of inflammatory disease.
6. For Better Bone Health
Chia seeds contain a variety of nutrients that are essential for bone health, such as magnesium, calcium, and phosphorus.
A single ounce of the seeds also contains 18% of your daily calcium requirement, which is essential for healthy bone, muscle, and nerve function.
Many observational studies indicate that getting enough of these nutrients is critical for maintaining healthy bone mineral density.
As a result, eating chia seeds on a regular basis may help keep your bones strong.
Side Effects of Eating Chia Seeds
Chia seeds are generally considered safe to consume. Some people may be allergic to chia seeds, but this is uncommon.
According to a 2019 study, chia seeds have structural similarities to other foods to which people may be allergic, such as sesame seeds and hazelnuts. This may result in cross-sensitization in some people. However, it is unclear how many people will be affected.
Anyone who develops new symptoms after eating chia seeds should discontinue use and consult a doctor.