Proven Health Benefits of Chia Seeds

Feb 28, 2017

Chia Seed Health Benefits

Chia seeds may be tiny, but these little seeds pack such a punch they are considered a superfood. Chia seeds are an inexpensive source of nutrients and energy. They are a popular natural remedy that can be used to reduce blood sugar, suppress appetite and relieve constipation.

What are the Nutritional Benefits of Chia Seeds?

Chia seeds are high in fiber, fat and protein but low in carbohydrate, making them a suitable source of energy for those on low carb diets. Low carb diets are often lacking in fiber, which is something chia seeds have plenty of.

One ounce of chia seeds contain 10 grams of fiber (40% of the RDA), 12 grams of carbohydrate (4% of the RDA), 9 grams of fat (13% of the RDA) and almost 5 grams of protein (9% of the RDA.)

Chia seeds are high in calcium, magnesium, iron. They also contain potassium, niacin, thiamine, manganese, and zinc.

Chia seeds contain almost 5 grams of omega 3 fatty acids in a single ounce! These omega 3 fatty acids may be the most critical factor in the amazing health benefits of chia seeds. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, Omega 3 fatty acids are important for reducing inflammation.1 The omega 3 fatty acids are thought to be responsible for reducing incidence of heart disease, high cholesterol, mental disorders, and arthritis. Common sources of omega 3 fatty acids are fish, like salmon. Chia seeds are a nice alternative for vegetarians, especially. They are also easier to keep on hand and prepare than fish.

Chia seeds are a wonderful way to let your food be your medicine.

Health Benefits of Chia Seeds

Appetite Suppressant

Chia seeds can give you a “full feeling,” thereby reducing appetite and increasing weight loss potential. Adding a serving of chia seeds (2 tablespoons) to a cup of water will give you the benefit of hydration, the nutrition of the chia seeds and the feeling of fullness – all great for weight loss. Ideally, you will allow the chia seeds to sit in the water in the refrigerator for a few hours. This will allow the seeds to absorb the water.

Energy

The nutrients, fat and protein in chia seeds make them an excellent energy source. The electrolytes in chia seeds make “chia seed water” great for an after workout drink to replace fluids and nutrients.

Anxiety

The omega 3 fatty acids are beneficial to the brain, which means that chia seeds are useful for a variety of mood disorders, including anxiety, depression and ADHD.

Blood Sugar

Fat, protein, fiber and nutrients work together to make chia seeds useful to reduce blood sugar. Some find that chia seeds reduce sugar cravings as well. If you are using chia seeds for blood sugar, do monitor your blood sugar readings to make sure that chia seeds are not reducing your blood sugar too much.

Constipation

Chia seeds’ fiber content make it an ideal remedy for constipation. The magnesium in chia seeds is a bonus for constipation sufferers. Interestingly, chia seeds seem to have a balancing effect and can also benefit those with diarrhea or those with irritable bowel syndrome.

Insomnia

Increased energy is a common effect of chia seed consumption. The ability to use up energy during the day often makes sleep more deep and sweet at night. Calcium and magnesium, contained in chia seeds also are helpful minerals to promote sleep.

Arthritis

The omega 3 fatty acids, magnesium, calcium and other nutrients in chia may all contribute to the benefit to those who have arthritis, including osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

More than just an infamous novelty, chia seeds are an effective treatment that supports health in a variety of ways. Search on Instagram for recipes featuring chia seeds, or try our delicious pudding!

Earth Clinic’s Chia Pudding

3 tablespoons chia seeds
1 cup organic coconut milk
1/2 teaspoon organic vanilla extract
1 teaspoon organic raw honey

Blend together the chia seeds, coconut milk, vanilla and honey. Refrigerate for several hours or overnight.

For the compote:
½ cup diced fresh organic strawberries
3 dried organic figs, finely chopped

Other toppings/layers:

1 tablespoon organic almond butter
1 tablespoon unsweetened coconut flakes, toasted lightly
1 tsp pistachio
2 organic fresh fig, cut in half
organic blueberries

Have you tried Chia seeds for health? Please send us some feedback! Continue reading to see how our readers use chia seeds and the health benefits they experience.

Sources:

1. http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/



Anxiety  

5 star (1) 
  100%
Share your thoughts with our readers
Write a review


Posted by Mary (Asheville) on 02/28/2017
5 out of 5 stars

I agree, chia seeds are fantastic for easing anxiety. I add a heaping teaspoon of chia seeds to my smoothie every morning and besides making my skin soft, have noticed increased calm and centered thinking. Borage oil supplements (high dose) have the same calming effect. Perhaps even better than chia seeds.


Posted by Cherylanne (Clarksburg, Wv Usa) on 09/02/2011

After reading about chia seed, I purchased a lb bag of them for the omegas. I couldn't believe the vitamins, minerals and amino acid complex in these little seeds. After 2 weeks, I noticed my energy level increasing and I didn't have my usual sugar cravings in the afternoon. My anxiety started going away and I started walking more. It has been almost 2 months and I couldn't be happier with how much better I am feeling. I put a tablespoon of chia in a glass of water about half full then add a little cranberry juice, let it sit a minute, stir it with a spoon and drink this down twice a day. It's a whole food that is loaded with good things.


Appetitite Suppressant  

5 star (1) 
  100%
Share your thoughts with our readers
Write a review


Posted by Dianna (Austin, Tx) on 03/20/2009
5 out of 5 stars

i have been taking 2 tablespoons of chia seeds daily in my smoothies. so far i have noticed that it definitely keeps me fuller longer. it is too soon to say but i also think it is helping keep my blood sugar stable. and i love how they taste in smoothies and juices.


Blood Sugar  

5 star (1) 
  50%
4 star (1) 
  50%
Share your thoughts with our readers
Write a review


Posted by Mary (River Edge, Nj) on 06/02/2015
5 out of 5 stars

Chia seeds have mostly fiber in them and fiber definitely lowers blood sugar. Each tablespoon has 5 grams fiber (soluble). I've been incorporating a lot of fiber in my diet (Chia, Ground Flaxseed, etc.) and finally my blood glucose has dropped dramatically. Between my diet and added fiber from supplements (about 40-50 grams) total for the day, I'm extremely impressed with the results!!!


Posted by Bea (Tulsa, Ok) on 02/27/2011
4 out of 5 stars

I started taking chia seeds last fall. I am a diabetic and took 3 tbls in 6 oz of water, with a little lime juice. I made it the night before, put in the fridge, and have a light, tasty breakfast. I can tell you, that after about 3 weeks, my fasting blood sugar was getting steadily lower. I have since cut back on my insulin, and I am also losing weight, perhaps because now I have the energy to get out and walk 30 min. 3-4 times per week. I don't know if this progress will continue, but I sure hope so.


Constipation  

5 star (1) 
  100%
Share your thoughts with our readers
Write a review


Posted by Carolyn (Central, VA) on 01/14/2009
5 out of 5 stars

Chia seed is the great regulator of all time! It helped with my constipation, as well as my friend's chronic diarrhea.


Energy  

5 star (2) 
  100%
Share your thoughts with our readers
Write a review


Posted by Jason (Peoria, Az) on 02/09/2011
5 out of 5 stars

Hello, I have heard that some 2004 study concluded that Chia seed puts males at a higher risk of prostate cancer if consumed on a regular basis. I also have heard that Chia seed is a "superfood" that has a ton of vitamins/minerals and is wonderful for our health.

Is Chia seed good or bad for prostate health?.. And also general health too?

I have taken it and it has worked wonders for my mood and energy.

Sincerely, Jason


Posted by Rob (Manhattan, New York) on 02/22/2009
5 out of 5 stars

I noted it's effects mostly when I first added it to my diet. (increased energy) It is a regular addition to my morning cereal, sometimes adding both ground flax and Chia. One noticeable quality is how I can go the day without feeling hungry.


General Feedback  

Posted by Margaret (Waikanae, New Zealand) on 05/10/2011

I have only just found out about these and I think I am going to get some and give them a go. There appears to be a difference in them according to the country they are grown in but on the whole they should be the same. I would love to get rid of some weight along with aches and pains.

Replied by Dj
Edmonton, Ab
08/20/2013

WARNING: Omega 3's such that is found in Chia seeds can increases prostate cancer risk. www.cancer.org/cancer/news/omega-3-fatty-acids-linked-to-increase-in-prostate-cancer-risk

Replied by Sandra
Australia
08/20/2013

Don't jump to conclusions.. Read the whole study. For starters a quick look reveals:

"The study did not collect information on the men's diets. Therefore, it's not clear whether the omega-3 fatty acids in their blood came from food or from supplements."

The above paragraph says a lot.. But many people will give up chia seeds because of it. They are natural from nature, unlike many man made supplements.

Remember cancer can not live in a oxygenated and alkaline environtment. Research herbs that provide oxygen to the body. Deep breathing is good. Eat healthy food from nature (unprocessed) and fresh juices and you will be fine.

Replied by Timh
Ky, Usa
08/21/2013

It isn't wise to make blanket conclusions on studies that include several questionable variables and unknowns. The benefits of Omega 3's on human health and disease prevention are numerous. The one problem I see which could raise issues like this study found is the lack of fat soluble antioxidants like Carotenes, Vit-E & A that are essential to protect the sensitive unsaturated 3's. Heavy metals especially and any type free radical damages the Omega 3's.

Zinc and Selenium were also mentioned as being studied in this publication proly to find some "unknown factor" increasing cancer risk rather than reducing. Anyway, Zinc & Selenium are the two most important minerals for prostate health.

Despite being in the high risk category for prostate problems I have, so far, evaded any of the first symptoms of complication; with the exception of only very recently a problem urinating. At the first signe of urinary problems I take Stinging Nettles herb and Cranberry. Cranberry prevents infection by keeping the urinary tract clean which prevents inflammation in the Prostate. Stinging Nettles reduces dihydrotestosterone levels which is the number one factor for enlarged Prostate.


Posted by Lupe (Texas, USA) on 12/19/2008

I have been reading up on the Chia seeds. I have not seen any posts on this website about this seed. It sounds like a very good energizer plus other health benefits. Has anyone used it and had positive results?

EC: Thank you for the suggestion - these seeds sound interesting!

Replied by Tina
River John, Nova Scotia
01/06/2009

i was told that salba and ground salba sold in health stores is chia seeds. they are omega 3 rich as well as fibre and protein and their gluten free, check it out!

tina


How to Eat  

5 star (2) 
  100%
Share your thoughts with our readers
Write a review


Posted by Kelly (Cinti , Ohio) on 03/09/2013
5 out of 5 stars

Chia Seeds: Thought I'd pass along this info. If you are a homade soup lover (like me), a good substitute for traditional thickeners ( ie. cornstarch, flour, milk) is chia seeds. Have not tried this with flax seed but I'll let you know. The ratio of chia seeds/broth is 1 tbs/1-1-1/2 cups of broth. Yum!!


Posted by Genevap (Lancaster, Ca) on 01/03/2013

Chia seeds do not have to be crushed. They open whenever they come in contact with moisture. You can add them to anything. I put 1-2 tablespoons in half cup of kefir most of the time. Stir and let sit for few minutes or put back in frig and eat later. Suppresses your appetite, adds omega 3s to your diet and lots of fiber as well. Love them. I also make a pudding with them, add them to soup, many ways to eat them.


Posted by Lilyelectrolux (Twentynine Palms, Ca, Usa) on 12/11/2010

I have been eating chia seed ever since I heard about it. My favorite breakfast is to put 2 or 3 tablespoons in yogurt flavored with vanilla, anise, cinnamon, with a handful of blueberries and pomegranate seeds.


Posted by Stacey (Mesa , Az) on 10/27/2010

I make a lentil soup with the chia seeds in it. It thickens the soup, and is an easy way to eat them. I don't like the gel plain. Yuck.


Posted by Lisa (Anaheim, CA) on 07/23/2009
5 out of 5 stars

I'm a big fan of Chia Seeds! They are a great source of plant-based Omega-3's, and fiber.Plus, they are a very simple and easy to use supplement. The gel they create when you mix them in water (1 part seeds to 9 parts water) is loaded with fiber, and some people use this gel to aid in weight loss. The gel can be made and stored in the refridgerator for, I think, up to a week. I like to make a little chia gel each morning and add to my smoothie.



NEXT