Chia seeds are widely popular in many parts of the world not only because of their flavour but also because of the multiple health benefits of these seeds. Chia seeds are not only added to baked items and smoothies but are also eaten as a whole for achieving overall health benefits. However, chia seeds are not a very common ingredient in Indian households. These seeds are packed with health benefits and hence must be popularised in India as well. In this post, we will discuss how can we use chia seeds in water to improve our health.

Benefits of Chia Seeds in Water using Home Remedies
Benefits of Chia Seeds in Water using Home Remedies

This article brings to you the various benefits of chia seeds in water and different recipes which can be prepared in order to obtain benefits from chia seeds.

What are Chia Seeds?

Chia seeds belong to the species of flowering plants of the Mint family. These plants were originally grown in the areas of Mexico and Guatemala. Chia seeds are now commonly cultivated in America as well. Originally, the chia seed plant is a herb which produces purple and white flowers. The seeds tend to be small and oval in structure. They can be brown, black, grey or white in colour. Chia seeds have the ability to absorb lots of water and are hence hydrophilic in nature. When we put chia seeds in water they absorb water up to 12 times their weight. The seeds also turn slimy due to having a mucilaginous covering over them and hence may appear to have a gelatine-like substance formed when soaked in water.

Benefits
Home Remedies
Precautions
Reference

Benefits of Chia Seeds in Water

Promote skin health

Chia seeds are a rich source of antioxidants. These antioxidants are important for maintaining skin health as they help in eliminating free radicals from the body. Free radicals are simply unstable molecules which can damage the cells and their DNA. The antioxidants help in preventing the free radical damage. Free radical damage also contributes to skin damage and premature ageing. Hence, consuming chia seeds help in removing the free radicals from the body and therefore in preventing premature ageing of the skin.

Improve digestion

Consuming insufficiently healthy diets lead to the development of several digestive and bowel issues which make us uncomfortable from time to time. Problems like constipation and indigestion can be helped up to a great extent by consuming chia seeds regularly because chia seeds contain plenty of fibre. The fibre in the diet plays a crucial role in improving digestion and keeping the bowel functions smooth.

Help in weight loss

Chia seeds expand when soaked in water. They can absorb a good amount of water and also produce a gel-like substance when kept in water. Hence, when chia seeds are consumed with water, they help in creating a feeling of fullness and help the individual to feel as if he/she has had enough food. They reduce appetite and help in controlling hunger. This, in turn, helps an individual in achieving weight loss goals. Chia seeds are also helpful in dealing with digestive problems like constipation which are commonly faced by people when they are on a low-calorie diet.

Keep the blood sugar level in check

Chia seeds are a great choice for people struggling with diabetes and insulin resistance since chia seeds help in balancing the sugar level in the blood. Consuming chia seeds regularly help in maintaining the glucose level in the blood, and thus, helps in preventing an insulin spike and sugar rush in individuals. This is not only useful for patients of diabetes but also for people troubled with obesity.

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Help in keeping the heart healthy

Chia seeds have the ability to reduce inflammation. Inflammation can be the root cause of several illnesses in the body including heart problems. The intake of chia seeds can help in reducing inflammation in the blood vessels and hence cut down the risk of developing cardiovascular problems. Chia seeds are also a rich source of omega 3 fatty acids which help in reducing cholesterol levels and also help in reducing thyroid issues.

Help in keeping the hair healthy

Omega 3 fatty acids present in chia seeds help in nourishing the scalp from within and hence it makes the hair grow healthy and fuller. Studies have shown that omega 3 fatty acids can help greatly in making the hair grow faster. Chia seeds are a great alternative for vegetarians as well who would refrain from having fish oil which is a natural source of omega 3 fatty acids.

Help in fighting cancer

Chia seeds are a rich source of alpha-linolenic acid which has been proven to reduce the growth of cancer cells. This acid can help in destroying the cancer cells in the body without bringing harm to the other healthy cells.

Maintain strong bones & teeth

Chia seeds are not just a rich source of omega 3 fatty acids but are also rich in calcium, phosphorus, vitamin A and zinc. Since they are rich in calcium, they help in keeping the bones and teeth from getting damaged and also help in making them stronger.


Chia Seeds Remedies

Chia and Mango Smoothie

How to:

  1. Take ½ glass of water and add 3 tablespoons of chia seeds to it.
  2. Let the seeds get soaked overnight so that you obtain a gel-like substance.
  3. Add ½ cup of mangoes to a blender.
  4. Add 1/ cup of curd and the soaked chia seeds along with the gel.
  5. Blend this mixture for about 1 minute.
  6. If it is too thick, then you can add more water.
  7. Take out the smoothie in a glass and add some dry chia seeds on top.
  8. Have this smoothie once every week.

Chia and coconut smoothie

How to:

  1. Take ½ glass of water and add 3 tablespoons of chia seeds to it.
  2. Let the seeds get soaked overnight so that you obtain a gel-like substance.
  3. Add ½ cup of berries (of any kind) to a blender.
  4. Add 1 teaspoon of edible coconut oil.
  5. Add ½ cup of coconut cream and the soaked chia seeds along with the gel.
  6. Blend this mixture for about 1 minute.
  7. If it is too thick, then you can add more water.
  8. Take out the smoothie in a glass and add some dry chia seeds on top.
  9. Have this smoothie 2-3 times every week.

Green Chia Smoothie

How to:

  1. Take ½ glass of water and add 3 tablespoons of chia seeds to it.
  2. Let the seeds get soaked overnight so that you obtain a gel-like substance.
  3. Add ½ cup of kiwis to a blender along with a few dices of pear.
  4. Add 1/2 cup of Greek yoghurt and the soaked chia seeds along with the gel.
  5. Add 1 tablespoon of matcha powder or green tea powder.
  6. Add 2 tablespoons of honey.
  7. Blend this mixture for about 1 minute.
  8. If it is too thick, then you can add more water.
  9. Take out the smoothie in a glass and add some dry chia seeds on top.
  10. Have this smoothie once a week.
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Overnight Berry – Chia Oats

How to:

  1. Take 1 jar which is comfortable to eat from.
  2. Add ½ cup of plain rolled oats to the jar.
  3. Add 2 tablespoons of chia seeds.
  4. Add 1/4th cup of water.
  5. Add 1 cup of low-fat milk to the jar.
  6. Let the let it stay in the fridge overnight.
  7. In the morning, take ½ cup of frozen strawberries and ½ cup of blueberries in a blender.
  8. Add 3-4 tablespoons of yoghurt and blend well for 1 minute to get a puree.
  9. Add this berry mixture to the jar of overnight oats and mix.
  10. Eat the overnight oats as breakfast every day.

Overnight Avocado – Chia Oats

How to:

  1. Take 1 jar which is comfortable to eat from.
  2. Add ½ cup of plain rolled oats to the jar.
  3. Add 2 tablespoons of chia seeds.
  4. Add 1/4th cup of water.
  5. Add 1 cup of low-fat milk to the jar.
  6. Let the jar stay in the fridge overnight.
  7. In the morning, take ½ cup of diced avocado and 1 teaspoon of honey in a blender.
  8. Add 3-4 tablespoons of yoghurt and blend well for 1 minute to get a puree.
  9. Add this avocado mixture to the jar of overnight oats and mix.
  10. Eat the overnight oats as breakfast every day.

Avocado Chia Pudding

How to:

  1. Take 1 cup of diced avocados and add them to a blender.
  2. Add 2 tablespoons of chia seeds along with a 1/4th cup of water.
  3. Add 2 teaspoons of maple syrup for some sweetness.
  4. Add 3 tablespoons of coco powder as well and add ½ cup of cream.
  5. Blend well for 2 minutes until you get a smooth mixture.
  6. Pour the mixture into a bowl and place it in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
  7. Eat this pudding as dessert two to three times a week as a healthy treat.

How these recipes help:

These recipes are not just for adults but can be enjoyed by children as well. The traditional method of eating chia seeds in water does not work well for children but chia seeds can certainly be added to oats, fruits and smoothies in order to make tasty recipes which are easy to prepare. These recipes are not only quick in preparation but also include other healthy ingredients in order to enhance one’s health. However, if an individual is on a diet then these certain ingredients in the recipes can be substituted with low-fat ingredients as well. You can certainly adapt these recipes to your taste and use a variety of other ingredients in order to add the chia seed gel to your daily diet.

Chia and Lemon Detox Water
How to:
  1. Take a water bottle.
  2. At the base of the bottle, add 1/2 teaspoon of lemon rind.
  3. Add 2 tablespoons of lemon juice.
  4. Add 3-4 slices of orange or any other sweet citrus fruit.
  5. Add 2 teaspoons of chia seeds and add 2 cups of water to fill the bottle.
  6. You may add 2 tablespoons of honey for some added sweetness.
  7. Let the water bottle rest for 30 minutes.
  8. Then you can drink this water daily. Eat the fruits you find at the bottom of the bottle as a healthy snack.
Chia and Cucumber Detox Water
How to:
  1. Take an empty bottle which can easily carry at least 2 cups of water. Make sure the bottle has a wide mouth.
  2. Add 3-4 slices of cucumber at the base of the bottle.
  3. Add 7-8 fresh mint leaves and then add 2 teaspoons of chia seeds as well.
  4. Fill the bottle with 2 cups of water.
  5. Let the bottle rest for 30 minutes.
  6. You can consume this water as and when needed.
  7. You may add 2 teaspoons of honey for added sweetness.
Chia Seeds and Berry Detox Water
How to:
  1. Take an empty bottle with a wide mouth.
  2. To the base of the bottle, add 7-8 fresh berries of your choice.
  3. Add 2 teaspoons of honey.
  4. Drizzle 2 teaspoons of chia seeds and fill the bottle with two cups of water.
  5. Let the bottle rest for 30 minutes and then you can consume the water as and when needed.
How these recipes help:
These detox water recipes make use of fresh fruits which will help you to have a refreshing day. The added healthy snack of a fruit or vegetable at the end of the bottle will only add to the health qualities. The water may thicken up a little bit due to the chia seeds. When consuming this water, take small sips in order to chew the chia seeds well before swallowing.

Precautions

  • Chia seeds are a great choice for overall health and obtaining several nutrients as well. However, it is to be considered that chia seeds have a very high water absorbing capacity. This means chia seeds in water expand quite rapidly. In some individuals, this may not be suitable. Consuming large amounts of chia seeds in water only can cause blockage in the food pipe and may cause discomfort. This is because the chia seeds would quickly produce a thick gel-like substance which can be hard to swallow. Hence, it is not recommended taking chia seeds in large quantities.
  • Chia seeds do not cause any allergies. However, any person allergic to seeds or nuts must consult the doctor before having chia seeds regularly.
  • Chia seeds do not produce any known side effects due to medicine interactions. However, if one suffers from some kind of digestive issue or throat infection, then consuming chia seeds in water must be avoided as they can create discomfort.
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Reference

Wikipedia page on Lamiaceae

 

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