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Chia seeds: advantages and disadvantages

  1. What exactly are the benefits of eating Chia seeds? What beneficial effect does it have? And are there any drawbacks? There is not much scientific research on the subject, but what we know makes us cautiously optimistic.

What exactly is Chia seed?

  1. Chia seed is a power food that has existed for thousands of years and has been cultivated and used by the Aztecs since about 3500 BC. The Aztecs called it "walking food" because it gave people a lot of energy and the warriors a lot of stamina for their physical activities.

Beneficial effects of the chia seed

  1. Is it true that this ancient power supply gave the Aztec warriors more energy and endurance? Does it have any other benefits? What's so special about chia seeds? Let us answer these questions by taking a closer look at the composition of chia seeds and how it is responsible for its beneficial effects.

Chia seeds are rich in omega 3 fatty acids

  1. A lot of people know that flaxseed and salmon are important sources of omega 3, but few know that chia seeds are also a rich source of omega 3. In fact, 19-25% of the weighted chia seed is alpha-linolenic acid, an important omega-3 acid. This is essential as we cannot produce this acid ourselves. As a point of comparison, we take the flax seed, which contains about 23% omega 3, so in terms of omega 3 activity, chia seed is close to flax seed.

What does the beneficial effect of the omega 3 acid actually mean?

  1. Cardiovascularly and for heart health, it is great because it keeps the thickness of blood at an ideal level that prevents clotting, eliminates narrowing of the arteries, the risk of heart failure, heart attacks and strokes. In fact, it acts as a mild blood thinner.

Chia seeds are rich in soluble fiber

  1. About 20-23% of chia seeds are proteins, making them a rich source of protein, comparable to nuts and other seeds. In fact, it contains a little bit less protein than meat. This is good news for vegetarians as it is complete protein, meaning it contains all the amino acids essential for your health.

Chia seeds are rich in antioxidants

  1. Chia seeds contain a high number of antioxidants. On the ORAC scale you can see how rich it is in antioxidants for each product. Our body needs about 3000-5000 Orac units per day to protect itself against free radicals that can cause cancer, inflammation and cell damage. Chia seed supplies around 3000, bringing it close to broccoli, oranges and grapes.

Chia seeds contain a nice number of minerals

  1. People often overestimate the number of minerals that chia seeds contain. If you eat a lot of chia seeds you will also get a lot of minerals, but the average daily serving of chia seeds per person is about a tablespoon and in such doses you will not get the sufficient numbers of minerals for therapies. Still, chia seeds contain about 700 mg of calcium per 100 g, which equates to about 105 mg in a 15 g soup spoon. The optimal daily allowance of calcium is about 1000 mg.

Side effects of chia seeds

  1. Is all this too good to be true? Let us also take a look at the other side of the picture. What are the side effects of eating chia seeds?

Conclusion

  1. So you can see that eating chia seeds has quite a few health benefits. Disadvantages are not really scientifically proven and if you are already taking antihypertensive or blood-thinning medication, it is best to consult a doctor before testing chia seeds.

  2. So you can see that eating chia seeds has quite a few health benefits. Disadvantages have not really been scientifically proven and those who are already taking antihypertensive or blood-thinning medication should consult a doctor before testing chia seeds.



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