Chia seeds are among the healthiest foods in the world. This ancient superfood is native to Mexico and Guatemala, and chia seeds are believed to have been used by the Mayans, Aztecs and Incas. In fact, records indicate they were used as a food source as far back as 3500 B.C. Chia seeds were the third most important crop for the Aztecs, who prized it so highly that it was often used as currency. And it’s no wonder! These tiny seeds are loaded with nutrients proven to energize, satiate, and even aid in weight loss.
Plus, chia seeds have virtually zero taste, which makes them an ideal addition to almost any smoothie.
There are plenty of additional reasons you should stock up on this superfood, and we’ve listed 10 of them below. Read them while sipping on our Lemon Chia Seed Muffin Smoothie to really understand the benefits!
1) Chia seeds are rich in antioxidants that help protect the body from free radicals, aging and cancer. Their high antioxidant content doesn’t just keep your skin and body looking and feeling young, it also allows chia seeds to stay fresh as well. In fact, they can last up to two years without being refrigerated.
2) Chia seeds may be small, but they’re packed with fiber, providing 10 grams in just two tablespoons! The fiber content in chia seeds helps to lower cholesterol while keeping digestion in check.
4) When mixed with liquids, the outer layer of chia seeds swells, creating a gel. This gel can be used instead of eggs, which is not only beneficial for vegans, but for those looking to lower cholesterol and increase the nutrient content of baked goods.
5) Chia seeds provide nearly five grams of omega-3 fatty acids in a one-ounce serving.
7) Chia seeds also offer an excellent source of protein without any cholesterol. One 28-gram serving contains 4.4 grams of protein, which is nearly 10 percent of the daily requirement!
9) Chia seeds are hydrophilic, meaning they expand when in liquid (creating that gel-like texture mentioned above). They can increase to 10 times their size, helping you feel satisfied.
10) Don’t let their size fool you; these seeds contain two times the amount of potassium of a banana and three times the amount of iron in spinach.