Chia seed is the old-new health food. Nutrient-packed and exceptionally beneficial to health, this tiny seed was used as a staple high-energy, protein-rich food by the Indians  and the Aztecs. Recently, it has been rediscovered and you can find it proudly displayed on a shelf of your local health food store. Why should you buy it?

Diet

Chia Seeds can help you feel full after eating less food.  The seed is able to absorb 12 times its weight in water. If you mix some Chia seeds with some water and come back after 30 minutes, you’ll notice the mixture becoming gel-like.  The same action happens  in your stomach. The fiber and the gelling  of the seed keeps you feeling fuller longer, therefore replacing the calories you’d normally eat with water.

Chia gel creates a physical barrier between carbohydrates and the digestive enzymes that break them down in the stomach, therefore slowing the conversion of carbohydrates into sugar. This action stabilizes metabolic changes, reducing the highs and the lows of blood sugar.

Regularity

Chia is packed with soluble and insoluble fiber. Insoluble fiber sweeps the intestine, keeping the waste products moving. Soluble fiber irrigates the bowels, making digestion easier. Fiber-rich diet also helps reduce the risk of colon cancer.

Cholesterol

Long chain triglycerides can remove cholesterol off of artery walls, but only when eaten in the right proportion. Chia seeds have these long chain triglycerides in the right proportion.

Protein

By weight, the chia seed is 23% complete protein. Chia’s  protein is easily digestible, which is beneficial for athletes, children, adolescents and pregnant and lactating women. The seed contains one and a half to two times the protein concentrations of  grains.

Richest vegetarian source for the essential omega-3 fatty acid

Chia seed is rich in the unsaturated linoleic fatty acid. Chia sees also contain beneficial long-chain triglycerides (LCT) in the right proportion that can help reduce cholesterol on arterial walls. Unsaturated fatty acids help transport oxygen by the blood stream to all cells, tissues, and organs, therefore keeping the body at its optimal condition. Unsaturated fatty acids also help lubricate cells and keep them together (with the help of cholesterol.) Additionally, unsaturated fatty acids are essential for optimal adrenal and thyroid functioning. They nourish the skin, the nerves and the mucous membranes.  The unsaturated fatty acids also cooperate with vitamin D to assist in the assimilation of phosphorus, to make calcium available to bodily tissues, and to turn carotene into vitamin A.

Calcium

The Chia seed is not only rich in calcium, but also in boron, which helps the body to absorb and utilize the calcium.
Nutrient Absorption

Chia seed can absorb more than 12 times its weigh in water.  The absorption of nutrients and body fluid regulation becomes easier with Chia.

Stomach

A lot of people with gastric issues and those who are not able to tolerate certain foods, especially raw fruits and vegetables, have reported great success, after using Chia gel regularly.

Healing

The Aztecs used Chia gel to treat their wounds in order to avoid infections and promote haling.

Eye infections

Placing a seed or two in your eyes should clean your eyes  and help to clear up  infections.

Let me know if you know of more benefits of Chia. Tomorrow, I’ll tell you how to use Chia.

About Dr. Anastasia

Dr. Anastasia Halldin holds a Ph.D in holistic nutrition, speaks four languages, starred on a yoga TV show, produced and appeared in thirteen yoga DVDs, and is a mother of a kindergartner, twin toddlers, and a newborn. Dr. Anastasia loves doing crafts with her children and sharing her easy healthy recipes and knowledge of health and food with mothers to help them raise healthier families.
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4 Responses to Health Benefits of Chia Seed

  1. Pingback: Chia Bread « Healthy Mama Blog

  2. Healthy Mama says:

    I love your chia cereal idea! I have to try it.

  3. I love chia. It is so good added to granolas, or morning cereal. I even like soaking it in almond milk and using is AS my cereal.

  4. molly says:

    A great source for Chia Seeds and Flax Seed is FitFlax. It’s a low carb/low cal roasted golden flax and chia seed blend that’s delicious, even straight from the bag. It’s loaded with Omega 3’s, fiber and antioxidants. In the morning, I love it with greek yogurt and berries, later I’ll add it to salads.

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