What is in Chia Seeds

What is in Chia Seeds
These insignificant looking chia seeds pack a powerful nutritional punch.

What is in Chia seeds will surprise you, and perhaps even astound you, like it did me.

I had no idea that these seemingly insignificant, simple little seeds could pack such a spectacular nutritional punch.  For many years I associated chia with the Chia Pets animal figurines that grew a fur looking substance when water was added.

In recent years, chia seeds have grown in popularity due to their incredible health benefits.  If that weren’t enough, it turns out that chia seeds also provide outstanding medicinal benefits.

I will describe where chia seeds originate, and their history. I will explain the evolution of chia seeds into what we know about them today. I will also detail the various healthy components of the chia seed, and how that translates into healthy benefits for you.

In addition, I will let you know the best ways to use chia seeds so that you can enjoy them while benefiting from their many healthy constituents.

History of Chia Seeds

What is in chia seeds are either black or white seeds. Both colored seeds are equally highly nutritious. Chia is actually a member of the mint family.  Chia seeds were first grown in what is now the American southwest and the country of Mexico between the years of 910 B.C. and 1500 B.C.

Chia seeds were an integral component of the Mayan, and Aztec diet.  Aztec soldiers were known to utilize chia seeds as an important part of their diets, and the main part of their energy source during battles.  These Aztec warriors also used chia to encourage saliva, and to help ease joint pain.

At one time chia was an important crop in Mexico. After the Spanish conquest of Mexico, chia was outlawed due to it’s use among Aztecs in their rituals, and ceremonies.  Back in this day and age, chia seeds were called warrior food. Today, they are often referred to as runner’s food.

Commercial production of chia is at an all time high.  You can now purchase chia seeds online, and at many health food oriented businesses, and stores.

Healthy Components and Benefits of Chia Seeds

What is in Chia Seeds
Chia seeds deliver many health benefits including increased energy.

The healthy components of the chia seed are many.  For it’s size, the chia seed may be among the most nutrient dense seeds known to man.

EFAs – Chia seeds are loaded with EFAs or essential fatty acids. In particular they are very high in Omega 3 fatty acids. They contain more Omega 3 than salmon, which is known as one of the best sources of Omega 3, to put it in proper perspective. EFAs help build the cell membrane which is involved in allowing nutrients in, and allowing waste out.

Essential fatty acids, being the key component of chia seeds have many health benefits. These include endurance, increased energy, blood sugar control, help smooth skin, and strengthen nails.

EFA’s also reduce inflammation in the body, which can help prevent heart disease, joint pain and arthritis, and other inflammatory based health issues.

Calcium – Chia seeds are also an excellent source of calcium. They contain 5 times more calcium than milk. Chia seeds are also highly bioavailable, which means that can be easily and completely absorbed by the cell.

The typical store bought calcium supplement is a synthetic form, and is not bioavailable, and may do you more harm than good.

A vital mineral, calcium is involved in many processes of the body. It is well known for it’s ability to build bone, muscle, and teeth.  The heart, and nerves need calcium to function properly.

B Vitamins – Packed with vitamin B1 thiamine, B2 riboflavin, and B3 niacin, as well as Boron.  Boron works in conjunction with calcium to help build bones, and solidify them.

B1 thiamine is integral in the flow of electrolytes into and out of muscle cells, as well as nerve cells. It  also helps the body create energy from nutrients.

B2 riboflavin helps break down fats, proteins, and carbohydrates. It helps convert carbohydrates into ATP, or adenosine triphospate, which is involved in the body’s energy production.

B3 niacin has many functions. It helps with skin health, regulates digestion, reduces arthritis symptoms, supports mental health, helps prevent heart disease, helps with blood sugar control, and treats Pellagra.

Protein – Chia seeds are an excellent source of protein. Per ounce, it contains 4.9 grams of protein. This makes chia seeds, one of the highest plant based sources of protein on the planet. Protein, of course, is important for energy, and can help power you to accomplish physical tasks.

Polyunsaturated Fats – These healthy fats can help lower cholesterol, and help keep your artery walls smooth and slippery. Chia seeds have polyunsaturated fats in abundance.

Selenium – This healthy mineral provides many health benefits, and chia seeds are rich in it.  Selenium is a powerful antioxidant, and, as a result, boosts your immune system.

Selenium may prevent heart disease, may lower the risk of certain cancers, helps support a healthy thyroid, may reduce symptoms of asthma, and may help prevent mental decline.

Fiber – Chia seeds are also high in fiber.  Fiber, in addition to keeping you regular, also helps you to lose weight. This happens as the fiber in chia seeds make you feel full longer.  In addition, the gel like fiber in chia seeds also cleanses your colon.

Minerals – Other minerals in chia seeds besides selenium, and calcium include copper, magnesium, iron, manganese, and phosphorous which contain a myriad of health benefits. These benefits are realized both individually, and as a synergistic effect.

And, unlike store bought synthetic minerals, these are highly bioavailable, and usable by the cells in the body.  This mineral cocktail will also help to bring your body to a more alkaline, less acidic, healthy ph balance.

Vitamins – Other beneficial vitamins besides the B vitamins in chia seeds are, vitamin A, vitamin C, and vitamin E.  Vitamin A is an important nutrient for healthy eyes. Vitamin C is known as a great immune booster, and vitamin E is primarily noted for it’s ability to support healthy skin.

Best Ways to Utilize the Benefits of Chia Seeds

What is in Chia Seeds
One of the best ways to utilize the benefits of chia seeds is with a superfood smoothie.

Chia seeds, due to their recent popularity, can be seen as an ingredient in many foods, and recipes. Many of these store bought foods containing chia seeds are excellent, but some are questionable. The best way to know you are getting the most nutritious form of chia seeds is to create these recipes, and foods yourself.

One of the easiest and most nutrient dense ways to take advantage of chia seeds is with a smoothie. Add some raw, organic fruit of your choice, and 2 or 3 tablespoons of chia seeds for a smoothie that can only be described as superfood.

Another easy, and delicious recipe is for chia seed pudding.  Because chia seeds have a gelatinous texture, they combine easily into a natural pudding of your choice of flavors.

Chia seeds also make a great snack due to it’s energy boosting properties. You can eat chia seeds by themselves, or for more flavor and boost you can add coconut oil, or peppermint oil to your seeds.

If you have an aversion to eggs due to allergies or other sensitivites, you can easily use chia seeds as an alternative to them.

What is in Chia Seeds – Conclusion

What is in Chia seeds will surprise you, and perhaps even astound you, like it did me. I had no idea that these seemingly insignificant, simple little seeds could pack such a spectacular nutritional punch.

In recent years, chia seeds have grown in popularity due to their incredible health benefits.  If that weren’t enough, it turns out that chia seeds also provide outstanding medicinal benefits.

Chia seeds are either black or white. Both colored seeds are equally highly nutritious. Chia is actually a member of the mint family.  Chia seeds were first grown in what is now the American southwest and the country of Mexico between the years of 910 B.C. and 1500 B.C.

Chia seeds were an integral component of the Mayan, and Aztec diet.  Aztec soldiers were known to utilize chia seeds as an important part of their diets, and the main part of their sustainance during battles.  These Aztec warriors also used chia to encourage saliva, and to help ease joint pain.

The list of chia seeds awesome nutritional components or profile are: 
EFAs – Essential Fatty Acids 
– Health benefits include endurance, increased energy, blood sugar control, help smooth skin, and strengthen nails. EFA’s also reduce inflammation in the body, which can help prevent heart disease, joint pain and arthritis, and other inflammatory based health issues.

Calcium
– Health benefits include increased energy and endurance, blood sugar control, helps smooth skin, and strengthens nails.  Calcium also builds bone, muscle, and teeth.  The heart, and nerves need calcium to function properly.

B vitaminsB’s help creat energy, help build and sollidify bones, support nerve cells, imroves skin health, regulates digestion, reduces arthritis symptoms, supports mental health, helps prevent heart disease, helps with blood sugar control, and treats Pellagra.

Protein – Protein is important for producing energy.

Polyunsaturated Fats – These healthy fats help lower cholesterol, and help keep your artery walls smooth and slippery.

Fiber – Helps keep you regular, supports weight loss, and cleanses your colon. 

Minerals – 
Additional minerals in chia seeds deliver a myriad of health benefits, both individually, and as a synergistic effect.


Vitamins 
– Additional vitamins in chia seeds protect and support healthy eyes, are an immune booster, and help skin health.

Some of the best ways to utilize chia seeds are in a superfood smoothie, in puddings, and as an egg substitute.

 

What are your favorite ways to take advantage of chia seeds amazing nutritional profile? Feel free to leave your comments, and questions below. Also, please feel free to share on social media by using the buttons below.  Thank you for reading, What is in Chia Seeds.

4 thoughts on “What is in Chia Seeds”

  1. Chia seeds are great, they are a regular part of my diet.
    I first learned about them at a health club I worked at for many years. We put them in smoothies and yogurt parfaits.
    Mostly I knew about the omega benefits you get from them, it doesn’t surprise me though about all the other benefits they provide.

    I had no clue about their history or that they were banned at one point by the Spanish.
    Interesting little fact. 🤔

    1. Hi Lee, thank you for your comments. Sounds like you have benefited from chia seeds for quite awhile. It is an interesting fact that the Spanish banned them after their conquest. Take care, Tom

  2. I really learned so much about what is in chia seeds from your article, and I have thought about adding these powerhouse seeds to my diet many times but I have never took the time to shop for them.

    You gave me a great idea using them in smoothies, so today when I go grocery shopping I am going to purchase some chia seeds to go with my organic fruit and start preparing myself smoothies.

    Jeff

    1. Hi Jeff, thank you for your comments. I am glad that you will be taking advantage of the many health benefits of chia seeds. All the best, Tom

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