Chia Seeds

Chia Seeds

In recent years, chia seeds have been growing in popularity. Remembered by many as a plant ordered off a late night infomercial, these little seeds have been found to be extremely beneficial if included in the diet. So if you aren’t currently including them in your daily routine, you may just want to start. Here’s why:

Dietary Fiber

Chia seeds are an excellent source of dietary fiber. Fiber adds bulk to the diet, and can make a person feel fuller, faster. This can help to control weight, and also helps to prevent constipation and aid in digestion. Foods that are high in fiber help to control blood sugar levels by slowing down the absorption rate into the bloodstream. Fiber also plays a role in a healthy heart, as it helps in reducing blood pressure, inflammation, and cholesterol levels.

Omega-3

These healthful fats are an important part of cell membranes throughout the body. They play a critical role in blood clotting and help to control inflammation. In addition, this type of dietary fat supports brain health and may assist with depression. The many benefits of Omega-3 fats are also linked to heart health. This type of fat can help to improve blood vessel function and may help to lower blood pressure and heart rate.

Vitamins and Minerals

Chia seeds are a great source of a number of different micronutrients. In particular, they are a wonderful source of the fat-soluble vitamin E, which helps immunity levels in the body. They are also a source of calcium, which the body needs for proper heart, muscle, and nerve function. Along with vitamin D, vitamin E can help to protect against cancer, diabetes, and high blood pressure.

How to Enjoy

Including chia seeds in your diet is a great habit to start, and it couldn’t be any easier. You don’t have to become a super chef or spend any extra time in the kitchen, all you have to do is add them to some things that you may already be eating. One simple way to incorporate them is by adding a 2 Tablespoons to a 16 or 20 ounce bottled water. After about 20 minutes, the seeds will absorb some of the water and expand. You can sip on this throughout the afternoon, and it will help to keep you full and energized until dinner. Other ways to enjoy include sprinkling on top of a salad, eating with yogurt, or as part of a smoothie.

One important thing to keep in mind is to integrate them into your diet slowly. If your diet is relatively low in fiber, it is ideal to increase the amount of chia in your diet gradually to decrease the chances of any gastrointestinal discomfort. If you want to do something great for yourself, start adding these powerful seeds daily. Your body and mind will thank you! Try white chia seeds! Black chia seeds are sooooo last year.

white chia seeds

About the author: David A. Wiss
David A. Wiss
David Wiss, MS, RDN is the founder of Nutrition in Recovery, which specializes in: Addictions, Eating Disorders, Mental Health, Body Image, and General Wellness. Mr. Wiss works closely with individuals to help them revolutionize their relationship with food and has shared his expertise with numerous eating disorder and addiction facilities throughout the greater Los Angeles area. David is a nationally recognized expert in nutrition for addiction and is currently working on his Ph.D. in Public Health from UCLA.