Despite their tiny size, chia seeds are one of the most nutritious foods on the planet. They’re loaded with fiber, protein, omega-3 fatty acids and various micronutrients.
Chia seeds are loaded with nutrients that can have important benefits for your body and brain.
- Almost all of the carbohydrates in chia seeds are fiber, mainly soluble fiber. This type of fiber, when combined with water forms a gel-like substance. In the digestive tract, this viscous gel-like substance helps keep us full for longer by slowing down gastric emptying, combat diarrhea and they are a food source for the beneficial bacteria in our gut. Soluble fiber has also been shown to improve blood sugar control by slowing down the release of glucose into the bloodstream.
- Another unique characteristics of chia seeds is their high content of heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids. A high intake omega-3 relative to omega-6 reduces inflammation in your body. As they’re a great source of omega-3 fatty acids, chia seeds promote a lower omega-6 to omega-3 ratio. A low ratio is associated with a lower risk of various chronic conditions — such as heart disease, cancer, and inflammatory diseases.
- Chia seeds are also a good source of antioxidant compounds such as quercetin, chlorogenic acid, kaempferol and caffeic acid. These compounds may reduce the risk of chronic illnesses.