Do you still recall the chia commercials? Chia seeds have advanced considerably since the time of the terracotta Chia “pets,” though. You’ve probably noticed chia seed-based puddings and smoothies on your Instagram feed quite frequently lately.
In recent years, chia seeds have even been referred to as a superfood. There are many claims made about the health advantages, including that they might aid in weight loss. But do they actually work to reduce waistline size? Find out by reading on.
What Are Chia seeds?
Actually originating in Mexico, chia is a member of the mint family. Although they are a pseudo grain, chia seeds are eaten like whole grains. They are therefore the abundantly carbohydrate-containing seeds of a non-grass plant. Chia seeds enlarge and produce a thick gel when exposed to liquid.
Supposedly a staple of the Aztec and Mayan diets, chia seeds were later outlawed due to their ritualistic religious use. They had a modest following for about a century, but recently returned to the market as a potential superfood.
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Chia seeds—do they aid in weight loss?
The internet is full of claims that chia seeds help you lose weight and control your appetite. According to the widely accepted theory, chia seeds keep you fuller for longer because they are filling and high in fibre. As a result, they might aid in reducing overeating.
Chia seeds in two tablespoons
Almost 10 grammes of fibre can be found in Trusted Source. About 40% of the daily recommended intake is represented by that. Fiber-rich diets have been associated with weight loss. 2015 research indicates According to a reliable source, consuming 30 grammes of fibre every day could help you lose as much weight as if you were on a more complicated diet.
But there is a catch. The hype is not supported by research. Studies on chia seeds and weight loss in people are scarce. The impact of chia seeds on disease risk factors and weight loss was examined in a 2009 study.
Prior to their first and last meals of the day, 90 overweight or obese adults took either a placebo or 25 grammes of chia seeds dissolved in water for the study. Sadly, the findings revealed no difference in body mass, body composition, or disease risk factors.
Additionally, chia seeds have a high calorie and fat content. 138 calories and 9 grammes of fat are present in two tablespoons. Chia seeds can make you feel fuller and make you less likely to overeat if they are consumed in moderation.
Heart health and chia seeds
Chia seeds are frequently promoted as being heart-healthy because, despite their small size, they contain a lot of omega-3 fatty acids. Alpha-linolenic acid, however, makes up the majority of the omega-3 fatty acids in chia seeds (ALA).
According to a 2012 Trusted Source review, ALA-rich foods and supplements may lower your risk of developing coronary heart disease and the metabolic syndrome. However, at least one study discovered a link between high ALA levels and a higher risk of cardiac arrest.
Out of the 16 studies that were examined, only half endorsed the health advantages of ALA. More study is required.
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Health benefits of chia seeds
Chia seeds come in a small package but contain a lot of nutrition. Here are a few advantages:
Although chia seeds are a fantastic source of calcium, they don’t contain many vitamins. Despite conflicting study findings, it is obvious that calcium supports healthy metabolic function as well as strong bones and teeth.
Additionally, chia seeds have no cholesterol. They don’t contain many vitamins, but they are a good source of a number of minerals, including:
The Bottom Line
A wholesome weight loss regimen can include chia seeds, a nutrient-dense pseudograin. However, they are not a quick fix for losing a dress size. They might also have the opposite effect if you eat too many. Healthy weight loss has never been attributed to a particular food.
Even though some claim to have lost weight after incorporating chia seeds into their diets, it’s likely that chia seeds were only a small part of a larger healthy diet and exercise programme. And given that chia seeds have no flavour on their own and only taste good when mixed with other foods or flavoured liquids, some people would rather get their calories from a more filling source.