Many people are interested in adding chia seeds to their diet but don’t quite know how to use them correctly. These tiny seeds pack a big nutritional punch, so it’s important to make sure you’re putting them to good use! If you want to learn how to use chia seeds in water, keep reading to find out more.
What are Chia Seeds in Water?
As the name suggests, chia seeds in water simply mean chia seeds (a tablespoon or so) added to a glass of water. When left to sit, chia seeds absorb water up to 12 times their weight. As a result, they swell, and the soluble fiber in them causes them to be slimy or have a gelatinous texture. The same thing happens in the stomach when you eat chia seeds without soaking them in water. So chia seeds in water make it easier for the body to digest and absorb the nutrients.
They have a nutty flavor and are easy to include in your food. For instance, they can used to make Coconut Chia
Salad Dressings, Mango Chia Puddings, Strawberry Chia Jams, and all sorts of things.
Also, if you don’t happen to like the texture of chia seeds, you can always grind them up. Either way, it’s going to be easily digestible and good for your health.
Health Benefits of Chia Seeds in Water
1. Chia Seeds in Water Can Help Reduce Chronic Inflammation
Inflammation is a normal immune response to injury or infection.
However, chronic inflammation has been linked to metabolic diseases such as obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. An unhealthy lifestyle such as poor diet, lack of exercise, and smoking can increase your risk of inflammation.
According to one study, having 37 grams of chia seeds daily can help reduce inflammatory markers in the blood. Increased inflammatory markers can be an indication of inflammatory disease in the body.
2. Chia Seeds in Water are High In Antioxidants
Antioxidants are essential elements that prevent or slow down cell damage caused by free radicals. If uncontrolled, free radicals can cause cell damage, leading to disease and accelerated aging.
Antioxidants in chia seeds may help strengthen the immune system and reduce the risk for different cancers and heart disease. Chia seeds are rich in specific antioxidants such as quercetin, chlorogenic acid, caffeic acid, myricetin, and kaempferol, all of which have been shown to prevent cancer, protect the liver and the heart, and slow the process of aging. Drinking chia seed water is an easier way to enhance these benefits.
3. Chia Seeds in Water Can Provide a Good Source Of Fiber
Chia seeds contain high amounts of soluble fiber, which absorbs water and expands in the stomach. This slows down the absorption of food and keeps you full longer, which prevents overeating and aids weight loss.
Fiber also helps reduce bloating, constipation, and improve general digestive health.
Two tablespoons of chia seeds in water offer 11 grams of dietary fiber, which is half of what a woman needs in a day and about a third of what a man needs. Incorporate other fiber-rich foods throughout the day to help you meet your daily requirements.
4. Chia Seeds in Water Can Help Reduce Blood Sugar Levels
Chronically elevated sugar levels have been associated with insulin resistance, obesity, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease. Consuming chia seeds water first thing in the morning may set the pace for your blood sugar levels throughout the day.
Chia seeds have been shown to reduce and stabilize blood sugar levels, which can help increase your insulin sensitivity. Read More.
5. Chia Seeds in Water is Good For Bone Health
The high calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium levels in chia seeds all work together to keep your bones strong. Several studies have shown that diets high in chia seeds may help increase bone density and prevent osteoporosis. Read More.
Also, similar to other seeds (i.e., flax), chia has a high amount of protein-rich lignans called phytoestrogens that have been shown to protect against bone loss as we age.
6. It Can Reduce Your Risk Of Heart Disease
Heart disease can be due to many factors, including inflammation, excessive weight gain, and high blood pressure.
A diet rich in fiber can help lower blood pressure, and chia seeds contain a good amount of both soluble and insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber plays an important role in lowering cholesterol which may increase your risk of high blood pressure and heart disease. One tablespoon of chia seeds contains 4 grams of fiber, or about 14 percent of your daily needs. Chia seeds are also packed with potassium, calcium, and magnesium—all essential minerals for maintaining healthy blood pressure levels.
Some studies have shown chia seeds can reduce and regulate your blood pressure levels, making them helpful to reduce your risk for heart disease.
7. It’s a Great Source Of Plant-Based Protein
By weight, chia seeds contain 14% of protein, with just two tablespoons providing up to 5 grams of protein.
Protein is the building block of bones, skin, muscles, cartilage, and blood. It’s essential for tissue growth and repair, enzymes, and hormone production.
It also helps reduce appetite and cravings, making you lose weight and prevent unnecessary snacking that can contribute to weight gain.
Taking chia seeds water is a great way to increase protein intake, especially for vegans or anyone on a plant-based diet. Read More.
8. It’s a Good Source Of Omega 3
Taking chia seeds water can help increase the level of alpha-linoleic acids in your body, also known as ALA.
ALA is one of the essential fatty acids that the body needs but cannot produce. So it has to be obtained from food.
Other important fatty acids include EPA and DHA (both found in animal foods).
Though ALA is highly present in chia seeds and other plant foods, ALA has to be converted into EPA or DHA before it can be utilized in the body. Unfortunately, the conversion process is inefficient in humans, and only a small percentage of ALA can be converted to either the EPA or DHA.
So, if following a vegan diet, you may want to include a plant-based DHA supplement to avoid running into deficiencies.
Otherwise, ALA can still be used to provide energy to the body.
9. Chia Seeds in Water is high in nutrients and low in calories
With all the micronutrients and macronutrients, chia seeds water is a nutritional powerhouse.
Here are the nutrients to expect from 2 tablespoons of chia seeds in water.
Fiber – 11 grams
Protein – 5 grams
Unsaturated fats including omega 3 fatty acids – 9 grams
It’s also high in micronutrients, including magnesium, calcium, manganese, potassium, vitamin B1 (thiamine), B2 (riboflavin), B3 (niacin), and vitamin C.
How to Use Chia Seeds in Water
1. Chia cereal
This can be a great swap from your usual breakfast cereal
Simply soak two tablespoons of chia seeds in a glass of water and let it sit overnight in the fridge
Add your favorite toppings such as fruit, nuts, banana, and spices such as cinnamon or vanilla extract to enhance the taste.
2. Homemade lemonade
Add one and half tablespoons of chia in 2 cups of cold water and let it sit for half an hour.
Squeeze one lemon and add a sweetener of choice like natural honey.
3. In soup or gravy
Instead of using flour to thicken soups and gravies, soak chia seeds in water and allow the gel to form, then mix it in.
4. Vegan option to gelatin
Chia seed water is an excellent substitute for gelatin. The jiggly, bouncy substance commonly used in jell-O, a variety of gelatin desserts, puddings, among other foods.
Gelatin is made from animal bones. If you’re looking for a vegan option for these dishes, it’s easy to replace gelatin with chia seed water, which you can easily make at home.
5. Put in your smoothies
Mix chia seeds in water into your favorite fruit smoothie for a boost of protein and omega-3 fatty acids. Chia seeds can make any smoothie creamier and more satisfying. Consider using them instead of flaxseeds if you’re not a fan of nutty flavors.
6. Use it as an egg substitute.
Mix a teaspoon of chia seeds with three tablespoons of water and stir until blended. Let sit for 10 minutes, and then you’ll have a gel-like egg substitute perfect for cooking or baking! How cool is that? Just remember, it won’t bind together like eggs do, so don’t try scrambling it. However, if you want a gelatinous texture, use four teaspoons instead of 1 teaspoon.
7. Add to salad dressing
Adding chia seeds to your favorite salad dressing is a great way to get more health benefits from these tiny wonders. Simply soak them in water, making sure they do not clump together, and then add them.
Chia seeds in water also make a great addition to homemade mayonnaise, yogurt, or hummus. For example, Tahini (sesame seed paste) mayonnaise is made by simply adding tahini and lemon juice (or vinegar) and can be used for sandwiches, wraps, or with veggies.
8. Bake in bread
You can use chia seeds in water as an egg substitute for bakers who are allergic or have ethical reasons for not using them. Mix 1 tablespoon of ground chia with 3 tablespoons of water, stir, and let sit for 5 minutes. Then add it to a recipe that calls for one egg; your bread will rise higher, thanks to chia’s high fiber content. You’ll also save calories—chia seeds only contain 45 calories per ounce versus 93 in eggs.
9. Make chia pudding
If you haven’t tried a chia pudding yet, you’re missing out on a delicious and healthful snack. Mix two tablespoons of chia seeds with half a cup of water or plant based milk, and let them sit for 30 minutes. Put them in your refrigerator for about four hours before enjoying them! Top with fresh fruit, such as raspberries or blueberries, to add sweetness and flavor.
10. Add it to savoury recipes
If you’re looking for a way to add some healthy fats and protein to your meals, but don’t want to overload on calories, a tablespoon of chia seeds per day is all you need. Combine it with other ingredients, or use it as an extra crunchy topping on smoothies or salads.
11. Make crackers
Many people don’t know that chia seeds can be ideal for homemade crackers and flatbreads. The protein and fiber found in chia seeds give these baked goods an added nutrition boost. The recipe is simple: just blend your chia seeds in water until they reach a fine consistency, then add them to regular flour, along with spices and salt if you like. Roll out your dough and slice it up into crackers or flatbreads!
Chia seeds in water are versatile, and their benefits are endless. Studies suggest that regularly consuming chia can lead to a nutritional boost in minerals and vitamins. It can also inhibit inflammation, reduce the risk of heart disease, regulate your blood glucose, and enhance weight loss, among other benefits.
If you’ve not been consuming chia, maybe it’s time. Besides, there are a variety of ways to help you consume them and actually enjoy them.
One of the easiest ways to add extra nutrition to your daily routine is using chia seeds in water! As discussed above, there are various ways to incorporate chia seeds in water into the diet – just go with whichever method sounds interesting to you.
If you enjoyed this article on how to use chia seeds in water, or if you have a question, be sure to leave a comment below.
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Loved the article on chia seeds and water.
How long do you wait after adding the seeds to water before you drink it?
Nina, it takes 15 minutes to form into a gel.
I love the benefits of chia seeds