Most of us are familiar with chia seeds from the little clay figurines that have them planted into their heads in order to grow “hair”. Did you know though that those same seeds boast a nutritional powerhouse when consumed?
That’s right, those little seeds that you have been using all these years to entertain your kids have just as much of a place in your diet as they do in your kitchen window. Here we are going to go over what chia seeds have to offer nutritionally as well as how you can incorporate them into your diet.
Nutritional Breakdown Of Chia Seeds
The nutritional benefit of chia seeds lies within their balance of carbs, fats and protein. One ounce of chia seeds contains 12 grams of carbohydrates, 9 grams of fats and 4 grams of protein. At first glance this does not seem very appealing but as you look deeper into the content of these nutrients you will see just how amazing it is.
The carbohydrates are made up of mostly fiber and contain over 10 grams of fiber per ounce. That is about a third of the fiber you should be getting each day. Fiber is an important part of a number of healthy benefits and most Americans aren’t getting nearly enough of it in their diets. Getting enough fiber in your diet also has added bonuses during weight loss due to the feeling of satiety that comes along with consuming it.
The fat contained in chia seeds are made up of mostly essential fatty acids including an awesome source of omega-3‘s and omega-6. These fatty acids are important for a number of things in the body such as heart and brain function. They also have been shown to reduce risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer and arthritis.
Chia seeds also offer a source of complete proteins including all nine essential amino acids. You get 4 grams of protein in one-ounce of chia seeds, which isn’t much but it is a good contribution toward your daily protein requirements. As I have mentioned before, protein consumption is important during weight loss in order to maintain lean muscle mass.
Incorporating Chia Seeds Into Your Diet
There are a number of ways you can incorporate chia seeds into your diet through different recipes or even just having them with a meal. Some individuals include 25 grams of chia seeds with one of their meals once a day, which comes out to be just short of one ounce. While you may not opt to consume them every day in order to get more variety in your diet, creating this habit could be a useful way of getting these essential nutrients into your diet.
Personally I would recommend picking up a package and start by including them in your meals 2-3 times a week. In addition to this you should also try to consume other healthy foods that contain these important nutrients in order to get variety in your diet while reaching your daily nutrient requirements.
So, if you haven’t already, look into incorporating chia seeds and their super nutrient contents into your diet. They are a great way to balance out your diet and offer nutrients that are hard to find in other foods. Get creative with them and find the best ways for you to incorporate them into your meal plan. Because of the benefits chia seeds have to offer during weight loss, they may just be that extra ingredient your diet has been missing in order to help you reach your goals.
By Wes Young