Chia seeds are small, oval-shaped seeds that come from the plant Salvia hispanica, a type of flowering plant in the mint family.
Chia seeds may seem like a modern fad, but their origin goes back centuries. Since then, chia has experienced another little renaissance and now finds its way into our puddings, smoothies, breads, and much more.
Why are chia seeds so popular now?
We’ve recently re-discovered their reputation as nutritional powerhouses: One tablespoon (tbsp) of chia seeds contains about 69 calories, roughly 2 grams protein, 5 g fat (1 g saturated, 7 g polyunsaturated, 1 g monounsaturated, and 0 g trans), 6 g carbs and 5 g fiber.
Chia seeds also contain a number of vitamins and minerals. One tbsp is packed with- phosphorus, calcium, potassium, vitamin C, and vitamin E.
What does this actually mean for your health?
As it turns out, many things.
A review in the Medical News Today notes that chia seeds are a fantastic source of omega-3 fatty acids, as well as a source of a number of different antioxidants, such as chlorogenic acid, caffeic acid, myricetin, quercetin, and kaempferol, which may have heart-healthy, antiaging, and anticarcinogenic benefits.
- The fiber in chia seeds can aid the digestive system — and the review further noted that previous studies have found chia seeds can benefit people managing various diseases and health issues, including type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure (hypertension), and depression.
To clear doubts around the age-old dilemma: can adding chia seeds to your diet help with weight loss? - Not really. Since chia seeds have lots of fiber, they promote a feeling of fullness, and hence might prevent one from overeating which in return contributes to weight gain. But there is not a lot of evidence that supports the idea that downing chia seeds will slim your waistline.
What Are the Best Ways to Include Chia Seeds in Your Diet?
Now that we’ve clarified the various health benefits of the superfood, let’s get down to business: how exactly can you consume them on a daily basis?
The good news is that they can be added raw to dishes like cereal, yogurt, and even vegetables. Because the seeds develop a gelatin-like texture when they absorb water, they are often used to create healthy puddings and can be used as an egg replacer for baking. Chia seeds don’t have much flavor on their own, so they pair well with a number of dishes, and can be added to the following-
- Bread batter
- Muffins and Cakes
So go ahead, try making a popular chia seed pudding or sprinkle these seeds on your salads or over cereal, we promise you won’t regret it. If you are a vegan and/or enjoy being a little more adventurous with food then consider experimenting with chia seed meatballs and chia seed breads and crackers.
The following are a few more interesting dishes we found online:-
Coconut Berry Chia Seed Pudding
Chia Chipotle Bean Burger
Coconut Cardamom Vegan Overnight Oat Parfait With Blueberry Chia Seed Jam
Banana Chia Muffins, Chia Seed Jam, Chia-Chicken Meatballs and more
All said and done, use caution before eating chia seeds if you have allergies to foods such as sesame or mustard seeds — check with your doctor first before adding chia to your diet.
There are no hard-and-fast guidelines on the quantity of chia seeds you should eat daily but some doctors and institutions offer reasonable recommendations, such as eating 20 g (or a bit under 2 tbsp) of chia twice per day.
Instead of foraging for them in the crowded aisles of a grocery store, consider ordering 100% organic chia seeds from the comfort of your home.
Chia seeds are small, oval-shaped seeds that come from the plant Salvia hispanica. One tablespoon (tbsp) of chia seeds contains about 69 calories, roughly 2 grams protein, 5 g fat (1 g saturated, 7 g polyunsaturated, 1 g monounsaturated, and 0 g trans). Chia seeds can be added raw to dishes like cereal, yogurt, soups and more. They are often used to create healthy puddings and can be used as an egg replacer for baking. There are no hard-and-fast guidelines on the quantity of chia seeds you should eat daily. Chia seeds can come in black or white varieties, though their nutritional profile is the same regardless of which color you go with.
Go ahead and reap the many, many health benefits of the superfood.
Speaking of superfoods, read about the nutrient powerhouse quinoa here :