Chia seeds is the new super food that everyone is raving about these days. While we do want to incorporate every healthy food in our diet, it is always a good idea to have complete knowledge of food before consuming it as almost all edible items no matter how healthy come with a set of side effects. In this post, we will discuss the benefits, side effects as well as ways of adding chia seeds in our diet with a featured recipe – Healthy Peanut Butter Chia Seed Pudding.
Benefits of Chia Seeds
Chia seeds are plant-based seeds which are rich in many micro as well as macro nutrients and form a good source of protein for vegetarian/vegan diets. For vegans, this is especially a great ingredient owing to its high composition of calcium. Lets dig into some of the major health benefits that chia seeds offer.
High in anti-oxidants
These little seeds are rich in anti-oxidants which means beautiful skin as you age. Anti-oxidants are linked to multiple health benefits including lowering the risk of cancer. Regular consumption of chia seeds ensures a good amount of anti-oxidants in our body.
Packed with healthy omega-3 fatty acids
It is a great source of healthy omega-3 fatty acids. These fatty acids are extremely good for brain health and development. They help in calming a disturbed mind and help getting a relaxed sleep. Chia seeds are one of the very few sources of plant-based omega-3 fatty acids other than walnuts and flax seeds.
Good source of plant-based protein
We all know what struggle it is to get your protein intake right if you are a vegetarian/vegan. Two tablespoons of chia seeds contain as much as 4 grams of protein. Including this seed in your breakfast helps kick starting the day on a healthy note.
High in dietary fiber
These are rich source of fiber thus keeping hunger pangs, digestion issues and bowel movements in check. Adding chia seeds to your morning smoothie will give you good amount of fiber and will keep you full for longer time. This is one of the reasons that chia seeds are also linked to weight loss, no research available to back this statement though.
Its got calcium too
It is loaded with calcium which extends their nutritional value to another level. Calcium is a vital nutrient for our bones and chia seeds keep it in check.
Also read Healthy Homemade Granola
Side Effects of Chia Seeds
With all these wonderful benefits, chia seeds are definitely one of those foods which help combat multiple health issues in a single go. Although the list is not long, let’s have a look at few of the side effects it may have:
- Chia seeds are known to reduce blood pressure and blood sugar levels. Respective patients should consult their doctor before consuming it.
- Chia seeds should best consumed by soaking them first. Having them without soaking can, in few cases, cause problems in food pipe and stomach.
- Too much dietary fiber can upset digestion and cause pain in abdomen.
- It is always good to check to make sure you are not allergic to any food item.
Ways to consume Chia Seeds
Consuming chia seeds is not that different from consuming flax seeds. We have an entire post on flax seeds and how we can add it in our diet. Check it out if you have not already – Why and How to Add Flaxseed in Your Diet
Here are a list of different ways you can this superfood in your regular diet:
- Add to your breakfast bowl or smoothie
- Add to your yogurt (leave for 15 mins to soak) and enjoy.
- Add to your overnight oats jar (Check out our recipe – Overnight Oats: A bowl full of health)
- Make your very own powder packed chia seed pudding for breakfast.
Unlike flax seeds, chia seeds should be paired with another food to consume. It is not preferred to eat them by themselves.
Now if you’re not sure how to make a pudding out of these seeds, we have a recipe for you.
We do think chia seeds are incredibly nutritious and should be a part of everyone’s regular diet. Do try this recipe out and let us know how you liked it.
A | XOXO
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