Chia seeds are tiny nutrient-dense seeds, which are believed to be packed with a wide range of health benefits. These include reduced risk of heart and cardiovascular disease, balanced cholesterol levels, lowered risk of diabetes, healthy digestive tract, to mention but a few.
However, there are tons of studies which opine that this superfood also helps in promoting weight loss, and this is what this article intends to explore and validate.
After a rigorous research, we were able to discover that Chia seeds play a major role in weight loss because:
1. They Are High In Fibre
Chia seed is an excellent source of dietary fiber, including both soluble and insoluble fiber. These fiber acts as appetite suppressant as they keep you fuller for a longer period and thus preventing you from eating unhealthy diets that could trigger excess weight gain.
According to research, two tablespoons of chia seeds consists of almost 10 grams of fibre, which is about 40% of the recommended daily intake.
Again, multiple studies [including the one published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 2010]reveal that the regular intake of high-fibre diet can help boost weight loss process and reduce visceral fat in humans, not forgetting that it also improves digestion as well as bowel regularity.
In addition to the above, the fiber content in chia seeds help in keeping your cholesterol levels in check so as to reduce the occurrence of health conditions related to imbalanced cholesterols.
Therefore, one of the reasons chia seeds is very effective for weight loss is due to the fact that it is rich in dietary fiber, which makes you feel full for a longer time while also reducing your cravings for unhealthy foods.
2. They Are Excellent Sources of Protein
Chia seeds are rich in protein, the most weight loss-friendly macronutrient which reduces appetite and food intake.
In support of the above, there are numerous studies which posit that there is a significant relationship between increased protein consumption and higher satiety in humans.
This means consuming the superfood can help suppress your appetite and prevent you from eating unnecessary calories.
Researches also reveal that consuming protein-rich foods like chia seeds [100 g of chia seeds contain 17 g of protein] is capable of boosting the metabolism while also burning unneeded calories off the body.
Additionally, the protein in this superfood helps in building muscle mass, thereby reducing your body fat in diverse ways.
More importantly, chia seeds are gluten-free. This makes them an excellent protein source for vegetarians and people with celiac disease or sensitivity to whole grain.
3. They Are Packed With Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Chia seeds contain excellent amount of alpha-linoleic acid (ALA), an omega-3 fatty acid, which is packed with a wide range of benefits, including the lowering of inflammation in the body as well as blocking inflammation-induced weight gain.
Being one of the best plant-based sources of omega-3 fatty acids, Chia seeds are considered heart-friendly as they help in combating heart-related diseases and diabetes. They are also helpful in boosting cognitive function.
Not that alone, the omega-3 fatty acid content in Chia seeds is also proven to be effective in lowering cholesterol, triglycerides and blood sugar levels in the body.
In a recent study by the American Heart Association, it was suggested that people who should take a minimum of 1 to 3 grams of omega-3 fatty acid per day to enhance their overall well-being.
4. They Are a Great Source Of Calcium
Chia seeds are excellent source of calcium, one of the essential minerals the body requires for adequate functioning.
Two tablespoons of this superfood provides over 130 milligrams of calcium, which translates into more than 13% of the daily value (DV) for calcium.
However, several studies [including the one published in the journal “Obesity Research” in 2004]reveal that adding chia seeds to your diet could help shed some extra pounds and lose more fat.
Additionally, the calcium content in Chia seeds helps in improving metabolism. It is also said to be effective in regulating body composition and lowering body fat percentage. It promotes stronger bones and teeth.
5. They Help Prevent Overeating and Insulin Spikes
There are tons of studies which reveal that when chia seeds are mixed with water or juice for 10-15 minutes, it will absorb the liquid and form a gel-like substance.
This edible gel can cause feeling of fullness, thereby lowering your chances of overeating when consumed before meal.
Consuming soaked chia seeds also help in slowing down digestion while keeping blood sugar levels in check. This will prevent certain health complications.
More importantly, attaining a stable blood sugar levels is beneficial to weight loss in two major ways; it brings about reduced cravings and it also controls the production of insulin in your body.
Insulin stimulates the body to use glucose as energy, but when in excess results in fat storage in the body.
HOW TO USE CHIA SEEDS FOR WEIGHT LOSS
There are numerous ways you can add the healthy and nutritious Chai seeds to your diet. You can sprinkle them over cereal, salads, oatmeal, yogurt, rice dishes etc.
You can also add them to smoothies and baked goods like bread, muffin. More importantly, you can also add these seeds to any drink at home.
In addition to the above, you can also mix 2 tablespoons of chia in a glass of water and leave for about 20 minutes, after which you will be provided with a glass full of clear hair gel with black dots.
When you ingest this gel, it can help slow down digestion and also suppress your appetite for a longer period.
That said, you can also use chia seeds for weight loss by:
- Sprinkling them onto sweet potatoes
- Adding them to sliced fruit with nut butter
- Mixing them into applesauce
- Adding them to salad dressing
- Add them to avocado toast
- Making them into pudding
- Adding them to Greek yogurt
- Tossing them into a smoothie
- Adding them to homemade energy bites
- Mixing them into oatmeal, and lots more
Broadly speaking, experts recommend using 20 grams (about 1.5tablespoons) of chia seeds twice per day to enjoy the full benefits.
The Bottom Line
Chia seeds are highly nutritious. Chia seeds boost weight loss by a significant margin with the potent properties they are packed with.
However, if truly you intend to get fit and lean, it is imperative you understand this. Adding chia seeds to your diet cannot alone help you achieve that desired weight loss goals; you need to combine it with healthy eating habits as well as regular physical activity to reach the goal faster.
You can also read: 4 Crash Diets That Can Help You Lose Weight Fast and Safe