Chia seeds belong to the Lamiaceae family – the same family of herbs used as spices such as mint and basil – known for their health benefits. Let’s learn more about this seed as well as the benefits of chia seeds through the following article!
- What are chia seeds?
- What are the benefits of chia seeds?
- 1. Chia seeds are rich in antioxidants
- 2. Most of the carbs in chia seeds are fiber
- 3. Chia seeds provide a high amount of protein
- 4. Chia seeds are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids
- 5. Chia seeds help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease
- 6. Chia seeds can lower blood sugar
- 7. Chia seeds have the effect of reducing chronic inflammation
What are chia seeds?
Chia seeds are the seeds of the Salvia Hispaniola plant, which belongs to the same family as mint and basil, and is native to southern Mexico, Guatemala, and Bolivia.
Knowing what chia seeds are, you should also know more about the origin of this seed. The true origin of chia seeds is in South America, dating back to 3500 BC. Chia seeds were first discovered by the Aztecs and Mayans as well as finding out the wonderful uses of this seed.
The most widely grown chia plants and the best quality chia seeds are in the US and Australia. Because in those two countries, all the conditions (climate, soil, soil, light and water) help to grow and develop the best. Even if the chia plant is grown in a location with a latitude of 15 degrees, it will produce the highest Omega 3 fatty acid content in chia seeds.
Currently, our country has not grown this plant, so most of the chia seed products are imported to meet the needs of customers.
What are the benefits of chia seeds?
1. Chia seeds are rich in antioxidants
The most prominent health benefits of chia seeds are known for their high antioxidant content. These antioxidants work to prevent or slow down the oxidation of other chemicals. In addition, they are also known to reduce inflammatory responses in the body, slow down the aging process and prevent cancer.
2. Most of the carbs in chia seeds are fiber
Just a small 28-gram serving of chia seeds provides about 12 grams of carbs. Interestingly, 1/12 of that is fiber that doesn’t require the body to digest. Fiber does not raise blood sugar and does not require insulin to break down.
Although chia seeds are very nutritious and fall into the carb family, the benefits of chia seeds for health are very different from starches and sugars. The amount of carbs that the body will digest from 28 grams of chia seeds is only 1 gram. Therefore, chia seeds are really a very healthy low-carb food.
Due to their high soluble fiber content, chia seeds can absorb water and increase 10-12 times their weight in water, making them gel-like and expand in your stomach, so you You will feel your stomach is full, do not feel hungry and will eat less, suitable for those who are looking to lose weight .
In addition, the fiber in chia seeds also helps nourish the beneficial bacteria in the intestinal tract and balance the intestinal flora, thereby promoting general health. With 40% fiber by weight, chia seeds are ranked as the best source of fiber in the world.
3. Chia seeds provide a high amount of protein
Chia seeds are about 14% protein by weight, which is very high compared to most other plants. They are also a source of essential amino acids in a relatively balanced ratio, so your body can easily use this amount of protein.
Protein offers various the health benefits of chia seeds and is by far the most weight loss diet -friendly nutrient. A high-protein diet reduces cravings by up to 60% and reduces the desire for late-night snacking by up to 50%. Chia seeds are really a great source of protein, especially for people who eat little or no animal foods.
4. Chia seeds are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids
Like flaxseeds, chia seeds are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, more so than salmon. However, this amount of omega-3 fatty acids does not help the body much because chia provides only ALA. ALA needs to be converted to EPA and DHA in order for the body to use it, but this metabolism in humans is inefficient. Therefore, the amount of omega-3 obtained from plants does not seem to be as beneficial as that of animals. If you are looking for an omega-3 supplement then you should choose salmon or take a daily fish oil supplement.
5. Chia seeds help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease
Because chia seeds are rich in fiber, protein, and omega-3s, they help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. Trial studies have shown chia seeds to reduce risk factors including triglycerides, reduce inflammation, insulin resistance, and belly fat . They can also increase the good HDL cholesterol in the body. Some studies also show that chia seeds help lower blood pressure in patients with high blood pressure . However, it still needs to be combined with a varied and healthy diet to be effective in reducing cardiovascular risk.
6. Chia seeds can lower blood sugar
The elderly are often at higher risk of type 2 diabetes because insulin in the body loses its effectiveness in helping to convert starches into sugar. High blood sugar before eating or after eating is harmful to health. The benefits of chia seeds have been shown to help increase insulin sensitivity, lower blood sugar levels, and help control diabetes . Research has shown that eating bread sprinkled with chia seeds has a better effect on lowering blood sugar than eating regular bread. Therefore, you should add chia seeds to everyday foods such as yogurt or juice.
7. Chia seeds have the effect of reducing chronic inflammation
The inflammatory response is a normal response that helps protect the body against inflammatory agents. For example in the case of an injury or a viral or bacterial attack. Even so, inflammatory reactions in the body can potentially have certain harmful effects on health. For example, the inflammatory responses in cases of cardiovascular disease, diabetes and cancer can have serious health consequences. These inflammatory reactions may not be visible to the naked eye until symptoms are present.
The benefits of chia seeds have been shown to reduce inflammatory responses in the body so they are good for general health, and are especially good for the prevention and care of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, blood pressure and cancer. Besides using chia seeds, a healthy lifestyle combined with a reasonable diet will help prevent many chronic diseases .
Fiber, anti-oxidants, minerals, and heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids are all abundant and the benefits of chia seeds. They have been associated with reductions in diabetes and heart disease risk factors as well as advantages for digestion and gut health. Chia seeds are relatively simple to include in a balanced diet.