The health benefits of chia seeds contribute in increasing the energy levels in the body, improving endurance, treating diabetes, aiding weight loss, promoting stronger teeth and bones. Chia seeds are considered as one of the best super foods in current time. Dating back as early as the Mayan and Aztec civilizations, chia seeds have proven that they are truly beneficial for humans and can help people to become healthy and fit naturally.
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Chia Seeds Have An Amazing History
Aztec warriors used eat only one spoonful of these seeds to help them increase their energy and endurance at the same time. Meanwhile, for the Mayans, chia means “strength.” The seeds are known as “runners’ food” because both runners and warriors used them to fuel their body for running long distances and fighting battles.
You might be surprised to know that the chia seeds were originally targeted for equine use, but it has now been recommended for humans use as well. Recently, studies on chia seeds also linked its benefits to helping heal diabetes. Though it is extensively grown in Mexico and Bolivia, many US companies have started farming them as well.
10 Best Health Benefits Of Chia Seeds
Whether you are a health freak or not, here is a list of 10 best health benefits of chia seeds you must know:
1. Improves Exercise Performance
One of the best health benefits of chia seeds is the ability to increase endurance in the body. A study with 6 participants was conducted to check the benefits of chia seeds when it comes to physical performance.
In the study, the 6 participants were “carb loaded” and were given either Gatorade or a mixture of a half Gatorade/half chia seeds. The participants were then asked to run a treadmill for one hour to be followed by a 10km long run. Surprisingly, there was no difference between the two groups, which can only mean that replacing half of the power drink with chia seeds did not affect the athlete’s performance at all.
2. Treats Type II Diabetes
As said earlier, recent studies show that chia seeds can help treat diabetes. According to this study, 20 patients were able to take in either 37 g of wheat bran or 37 g of chia seeds for 12 weeks. After the respondents were tested, the researchers found out that those who took chia seeds improve a lot.
The blood pressure went down by 3-6mmHg and a risk factor, vWF, decreased by 21%. An inflammatory marker also decreased by 40%. Though there was a drop in the blood sugar, it was not as significant. However, it is a theory that chia seeds can help reduce sugar spikes after meals.
3. Rich In Fiber
Chia seeds are rich sources of fiber; having 10 grams of it in every two tablespoons. 10 grams is already 1/3 of the required daily intake. Eating food rich in fiber will also help reduce inflammation, regulate bowel function and helps lower the blood cholesterol level.
4. Promotes Weight Loss
One of the best health benefits of chia seeds is that they help in losing weight naturally. A study of 67 metabolic patients who drank a beverage that contained chia seeds for a couple of months, experienced weight loss much faster. Also, their blood glucose levels as well as triglycerides were reduced.
5. Antioxidant Properties
With its antioxidant properties, the seeds will not become rancid as its sensitive fats are protected and can even last for two years without refrigeration. These antioxidants fight off free radicals that damage your cells and hasten ageing and diseases such as cancer. Hence, with the intake of chia seeds, you will experience improvement in your skin as well as slow down the ageing process.
6. More Nutrients, Fewer Calories
Many of us hate calories because they are sometimes hard to burn. Taking chia seeds may help solve this problem. One ounce of chia seed serving provides with 11 grams of fiber, 4 grams of protein, 18% calcium of the RDA, 30% manganese of the RDA, 30% magnesium of the RDA, 27% phosphorus of the RDA, and 9 grams of fat (5 grams of which is Omega-3). On top of these, the one ounce also contains a subtle amount of Zinc, Potassium and Vitamins B1, B2, and B3.
7. Enriched With Omega-3 Fatty Acids
As said earlier, out of the 9 grams of fat, 5 grams of which is Omega-3 Fatty Acid. Chia seeds contain more Omega-3 than salmons do. Omega-3 will help you enhance your cognitive performance, reduce inflammation, and reduce high cholesterol levels. Omega-3 fatty acids also have ALA or the alpha lineic acid which was found out in 2013 to limit the growth of cervical and breast cancer cells.
8. Promotes Stronger Bones
With its high calcium content, it is one of the best foods to maintain strong bones. The seeds also contain boron, another important nutrient for bone health. Boron is essential for metabolizing calcium, manganese, magnesium, and phosphorus for you to maintain and grow healthy bones and muscles.
9. Dental Health Improvement
Chia seeds are beneficial for your teeth with all of its nutrients. Nutrients such as vitamin A, calcium, phosphorus, and zinc are helpful in developing strong teeth. Calcium, for one, is the building block of our teeth and is very important for us to maintain strong teeth.
Zinc, on the other hand, prevents tartar as it keeps plaque from mineralizing on your teeth. Zinc is also rich in antibacterial properties, which help keep germs that cause bad breath away. Phosphorus and Vitamin A also contribute in keeping strong teeth and generally, a healthy mouth.
10. Gluten-Free and Satiety
Chia seed is a gluten-free food. It does not contain gluten or grains. It also helps lower your food cravings in-between meals because of its satiating effect. Satiety is the feeling of being satisfied and full after eating. Chia seeds’ gelling action, protein, and fiber when mixed with liquids will have positive satiating effects.
The health benefits of chia seeds given here are true to research. These seeds may only be small particles to eat, but its benefits surpass those big foods you are munching on. Health experts strongly recommend grabbing this super food. So, do not miss this when you hit a grocery next time.
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