One of the biggest reasons behind chia seed popularity is chia seeds benefits. Not only are they great for cooking and baking, they have a lot of natural health benefits ranging from natural energy, supporting heart health and a source of excellent nutrition.
Nutritional benefits – For vegetarians, getting the right amount protein isn’t always easy. With chia seeds nearly 20% of the seed is plant protein. Since it can be used to make a variety of different foods, it’s an ideal protein source. They also contain very high amounts of omega 3 fatty acids. Something we would normally only get from fish and a few other plant sources. It contains more iron that spinach leaves, 19 different amino acids, more calcium than we get from milk and more antioxidants than many fruits. It’s no wonder as to why these seeds are super food.
Beneficial for athletes – Many of us have heard the stories of ancient runners (old school message delivery) in the Aztec/Inca empires using chia seed on their long routes. They used it because it was widely cultivated, very light to carry and they knew it provided the energy and nutrition they needed. It wasn’t until modern studies explained how this worked that we knew how. First, the seeds contain vast amounts of nutrition. Combine this with the expanded gel in the digestive tract and that nutrition is slowly absorbed into the body extending that energy source over a leveled out longer period of time. So while running, these ancient message runners were receiving energy while they were using it in a long cycle. A very logical explanation as to why they were able to run for such long distances (with training of course).
Weight loss potential – Chia seeds contain a large amount of fiber which is good for cleansing the digestive system and promoting regularity. The gel like substance formed from the fiber in the seeds contains zero carbohydrates which means it doesn’t provide energy to be turned into fat. The expanding natural gel also makes the body feel like it’s full so that you don’t eat more. In making the body feel full while still providing the nutrition stated above… it’s ideal for promoting natural weight loss.
Natural Energy – The nutrition mentioned above provides an extended list of vitamins, minerals and other materials that the body can choose from to get energy. Instead of just choosing between protein or Vitamin B the body can just say “I want it all” and use all of those things supplied to it from chia seeds from amino acids, protein, vitamins or fatty acids.
Beneficial against diabetes – When carbohydrates are processed by the digestive system, they turn into sugars which are used as energy. One of the main problems which diabetes is having too much sugar in the blood steam at one time. It is more ideal to have steady levels of sugar rather than spiked levels or super low levels. The gel formed from the fiber in chia seeds allows the carbohydrates to be absorbed into the system at a steady rate supplying a leveled amount of energy that lasts longer.
Healthier cooking benefits – Chia seeds can be added to a lot of foods and can be used to make many types of food. Used as a healthier substitute it can be ground into flour to be used in baking. Everything from pancakes to bread and cupcakes can be made using this flour. For people with allergies to wheat or gluten chia seed is free from both and there have been no reported problems. It is also a much healthier option when compared to other flours.
- Obviously, there are no allergy problems.
- Other flours contain high carbohydrates, chia contains very little.
- Chia seeds are not genetically modified.
- Contains high amounts of nutrition like omega fatty acids and potassium that other flours cannot provide.
- Has many more health promoting benefits.
- Is far more sustainable due to farming methods.
Chia seeds are GMO free and don’t require pesticides since insects don’t eat them or the plants. The plants also don’t require fertilizers and actually grow fairly easily. Its easy to find organic certified seeds although it isn’t necessary since it is grown naturally and simply collected without any processing. Experience chia seeds for yourself and discover the vast nutritional benefits.