In my quest for better nutrition and health, I have just added one more ingredient to my daily food intake – Chia Seed. I’ve been reading recently about the amazing benefits of this tasteless, and easy to consume seed. Unlike flaxseed, chia can be eaten whole as a grain, without grinding it. Therefore it is extremely easy to sprinkle it on many of the dishes, such as yoghurt, salads, smoothies, even ice cream (great for kids).
Since I don’t eat much fish and I don’t consume Omega-3 supplements, chia seeds immediately caught my eye as they are packed with Omega-3 fatty acids, nearly five grams in one ounce of serving. Besides this, chia seeds are also great source of fibre (extra fibre is always great for better digestion), magnesium, calcium, protein and phosphorous. This makes them one of the most nutritious foods on the planet. The ones you find in Malaysia are not the cheapest, but it is really worth the investment when you get so many benefits.
Here is why you should add chia seed to your diet
Chia is being studied as a potential natural treatment for type-2 diabetes because of its ability to slow down digestion. The gelatinous coating chia seeds develops when exposed to liquids-can also prevent blood sugar spikes.
Get More Fibre
Just a 28-gram or one-ounce serving of chia has 11 grams of dietary fibre — about a third of the recommended daily intake for adults. Adding some chia to your diet is an easy way to make sure you’re getting a good amount of fibre, which is important for digestive health.
Stock Up On Omega-3
Chia seeds are packed with omega-3 fatty acids, with nearly five grams in a one-ounce serving. These fats are important for brain health. “There’s better conversion of omega 3s into the plasma or into the food than with flax seed,” said researcher Wayne Coates.
Stronger Teeth And Bones
A serving of chia seeds has 18 per cent of the recommended daily intake for calcium, which puts your well on your way to maintaining bone and oral health, and preventing osteoporosis.
Don’t Forget Manganese
Manganese isn’t a well-known nutrient, but it’s important for our health: it’s good for your bones and helps your body use other essential nutrients like biotin and thiamin. One serving of chia seeds, or 28 grams, has 30 per cent of your recommended intake of this mineral.
Plenty Of Phosphorus
With 27 per cent of your daily value for phosphorus, chia seeds also helps you maintain healthy bones and teeth. Phosphorus is also used by the body to synthesize protein for cell and tissue growth and repair.
Pack In The Protein
Chia seeds also make a great source of protein for vegetarians and don’t have any cholesterol. One 28-gram serving of these super seeds has 4.4 grams of protein, nearly 10 per cent of the daily value.
Fight Belly Fat
Chia’s stabilizing effect on blood sugar also fights insulin resistance which can be tied to an increase in belly fat, according to Live Strong. This type of resistance can also be harmful for your overall health.
Loaded with Antioxidants
Most importantly, antioxidants fight the production of free radicals, which can damage molecules in cells and contribute to aging and diseases like cancer.
Improve Heart Health
According to the Cleveland Clinic, chia seeds have been shown to improve blood pressure in diabetics, and may also increase healthy cholesterol while lowering total, LDL, and triglyceride cholesterol.
As you can see, the benefits are enormous and it is so convenient and easy to take the chia seeds so why not add it to your diet. I add it to my granola or oatmeal breakfast, sprinkle it on my salads and other vegetables and I add it to my soya protein and fibre smoothie which I consume daily. You can also soak the seeds in juice or water in order to create a gel like substance which is great to clean your intestines.