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Health Benefits of Chia Seeds (Salvia hispanica)

Chia seeds provide more proof that good things come in small packages. These little seeds have been used for centuries to maintain good health and treat a variety of ailments. They are easily found in any grocery store and can be incorporated in your oatmeal, smoothies, and more.

Benefits of Chia Seeds

Continue reading to learn about some of the amazing benefits that Chia seeds have to offer.

1. “Superfood”

While they haven’t been classified as a superfood yet, this just might be coming soon. Chia seeds contain a rich assortment and high content of nutrients needed by the body. A single 1-ounce serving of these seeds will provide you with 11 grams of fiber, 4 grams of protein, 5 grams of healthy omega-3 fats, 18% Recommended daily amount of calcium, 30% RDA of magnesium and manganese, and 27% RDA of phosphorus.

Chia seeds also contain smaller amounts of zinc, potassium, and vitamins B1, B2, and B3. Want more good news? One serving will only cost you 137 calories while helping you to feel full (thanks to the protein and fiber content).

2. Rich in Antioxidants

Antioxidants are extremely important in hunting down and eliminating free radicals from the body. This is important because left to run wild, these free radicals can lead to cancer and/or chronic disease. Chia seeds are very rich in antioxidants, which not only helps protect against cancer and various diseases, but also helps keep our body working and looking its best.

3. Weight Loss Aid

As briefly mentioned, the rich fiber and protein content of Chia seeds can help you feel full. This reduces cravings for sugary, empty-calorie foods. The fiber in Chia seeds absorbs water in the stomach, which makes the feeling of “fullness” last. Chia seeds also help regulate the good bacteria in the good, preventing indigestion and related problems that can lead to weight gain.

Chia seeds are also a very healthy source of protein, especially for those that prefer not to eat meat. Studies have shown that protein is the most effective in making one feel full, reducing cravings, and assisting weight loss. The regulation of appetite and cravings can also be beneficial to those managing type-2 diabetes.

4. Heart Healthy

Studies have suggested that a diet rich in Chia seeds (along with soy protein and oats) can lower LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the blood. Simultaneously, this chia seed-rich diet can increase HDL cholesterol (the good kind) and reduce inflammation in the blood vessels. Therefore, adding Chia seeds to your diet on a regular basis can reduce your risk for heart disease, including atherosclerosis, heart attack, and stroke.

5. Support Bone Health

As noted from the nutrient breakdown above, Chia seeds are rich in calcium and other bone-healthy nutrients such as phosphorus and magnesium. As measured per gram, Chia seeds are an excellent source of calcium, and should definitely be incorporated into the diets of those that do not eat animal products. Calcium is important for healthy bone growth and repair, and these little seeds help meet the calcium needs of our bodies.

As can be seen, Chia seeds provide a wide variety of health benefits. And since they do not cost you much in terms of calories or fat, they are definitely worth adding to your diet!

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