Pic from here
Remember those chi chi chi chiaaaa plants? You couldn’t change the channel without an adorable little furry friend staring back at you. Well they are at it again, except in different form. Meet the chia seed. Yep the seed that adorable little pet grew from! Except today we are exploring all the benefits of the chia seed and how you can improve your health. These little black dots might be mistaken for poppy seeds at first glance, but as you look closely and read on you will see this these little seeds really pack a punch that is extremely beneficial to your diet. But I will leave the explanation to the experts over at Health Food Mind.
“Chia seeds come from a flowering plant Salvia hispanica. This plant, commonly known aschia, is a member of the mint family native to Mexico and Guatemala. The history says that chia was a very important plant in the Aztec civilization. After the extinction of Aztec civilization, chia has remained in use in the region, but for the rest of the world it remained hidden until a quarter century ago. Then the researcher Wayne Coates began to study chia as a possible crop for farmers in north Argentina. Coates began his work on chia in 1991, becoming an advocate of the application of these tiny seeds in cooking and alternative medicine.”
The Amazing Nutritional Value
This tiny seeds, which can be white or dark brown to black in color, have a high nutritional value. They supply the body with proteins, vitamins A, B, D and E and minerals like calcium, potassium, copper, iron, manganese and zinc. Additionally they are rich in fiber- ballast substances that promote digestion.
Chia Seeds Have:
eight times more omega – 3 than salmon
six times more calcium than milk
three times more iron than spinach
fifteen times more magnesium than broccoli
six times more protein than beans
four times more phosphorus than whole milk
Effects on Health
Chia seeds have a very positive effect on the body- giving us more energy, helping digestion and lowering cholesterol, but that’s not all. Check out this 8 reasons why chia seeds are the most popular superfood in the world:
1. They help with diabetes
Chia is a potential natural remedy for type 2 diabetes, which is being investigated in many laboratories worldwide. The gelatinous sheath that chia seeds develop after contact with liquid can prevent a sudden increase in blood glucose.
2. Improve the health of the blood vessels
It has been proved that the chia seeds raise “good cholesterol” ( HDL ), while lowering ” bad cholesterol” ( LDL ) and triglycerides.
3. Promote the digestion and cleanse the intestines
Just one serving (3 teaspoons or about 1 oz) of chia seeds contain about 0.4 oz of fiber – a third of the recommended daily allowance for adults. Adding chia seeds in your diet is an easy way to regulate digestion. The large content of fibers allows the seeds on a gentle and natural way to cleanse the intestines and improve the absorption of food.
4. Great omega – 3 source
Chia seeds are full of omega- 3 fatty acids ( nearly 0.2 oz per serving ). These fatty acids are important for the health of the brain and joints. The organism absorbs them much more easily than those from flax seeds.
5. Strengthen teeth and bones
One serving of chia seeds contains 18 percent of the recommended daily allowance of calcium. Consuming the chia seeds keeps the health of teeth and bones and prevents osteoporosis.
6. Supply high-quality protein
Chia seeds are an excellent source of protein for vegetarians and contain no cholesterol. One serving of these super-seeds has 0.16 oz of protein, nearly ten percent of the recommended daily dose.
7. Improve sleeping
The chia seeds contain tryptophan – an amino acid that is known to improve sleep, helps regulate appetite and is a good mood enhancer.
8. Promote the weight loss
Due to the high proportion of fiber and protein, as well as valuable nutrients, chia seeds are especially recommended for people who wish to lose weight. They accelerate the absorption of food and the breakdown of fat in the body. They provide a long-lasting feeling of satiety and have a low glycemic index
How to Use Chia Seeds in Your Daily Diet:
- Because they are tasteless, they will not affect the taste of your food, making it suitable for adding in countless dishes.
- You can sprinkle raw chia seeds on salads, toast, dessert, yogurt or add them minced in milkshakes.
- You can add them to the dough during the preparation of bread, cakes and biscuits.
- They are used for production of gluten-free flour that can be used alone or in combination with other types of flour.
- Chia is also used as a substitute for eggs and for thickening soups.
All this awesome research can be found HERE.
Photos Credit to: Jessica Helton