Chia seeds for cholesterol: 7 reasons why it can improve your heart health

High cholesterol levels are not good for your heart and overall health. Here are 7 reasons to use chia seeds for cholesterol management.
chia seeds for cholesterol
Add chia seeds to your regular diet. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock
Aayushi Gupta Published: 9 Dec 2023, 12:00 pm IST
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Chia seeds, packed with omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, and antioxidants, have gained attention for their weight-loss benefits. These versatile, dense seeds can be enjoyed in various ways and can be incorporated into several dishes, such as oats. But beyond shedding kilos, do you know what these tiny seeds can do? Well, it has been found that chia seeds play a crucial role in lowering cholesterol levels and enhancing heart health. Rich in soluble fiber, these seeds may contribute to reduced LDL cholesterol, while omega-3s support heart health by promoting a favourable lipid profile.

Additionally, chia seeds have anti-inflammatory properties that may further benefit cardiovascular function. But if you are still not convinced, here are some compelling reasons, explained by nutritionist Dr Archana Batra.

How can chia seeds reduce high cholesterol?

Here are 7 reasons why chia seeds may help reduce high cholesterol levels:

1. Packed with omega-3 fatty acids

Chia seeds are an excellent plant-based source of omega-3 fatty acids, particularly alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). Omega-3s play a crucial role in lowering cholesterol levels and supporting heart health. According to a study published in the National Library of Medicine, ALA helps reduce inflammation and improves blood vessel function, supporting overall cardiovascular function.

chia seeds
Chia seeds is a great way to start your day! Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

2. Rich in antioxidants

Chia seeds are packed with antioxidants, including chlorogenic acid and caffeic acid. These antioxidants combat oxidative stress and inflammation, which are key contributors to heart disease. They can also help neutralize free radicals, reduce inflammation and support overall heart health.

Also read: High cholesterol levels can trigger heart disease: Try these exercises to manage it

3. Soluble fibre content

The soluble fibre content in chia seeds contributes to managing cholesterol levels. Batra says, “Soluble fiber binds with cholesterol in the digestive system, preventing its absorption into the bloodstream and helping lower LDL cholesterol levels, often referred to as bad cholesterol,” says Dr Archana Batra. Due to their fibre content, chia seeds are also beneficial for digestion.

4. Regulates blood sugar levels

Maintaining stable blood sugar levels is crucial for cardiovascular health. Chia seeds exhibit characteristics that may contribute to managing blood sugar levels. The soluble fibre content slows down the digestion and absorption of carbohydrates, preventing sudden spikes and crashes in blood sugar.

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chia seeds for blood sugar
Chia seeds can help you keep a check on your blood sugar levels. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

5. Helps in weight management

The combination of soluble fibre and antioxidants promotes better digestion and aids in metabolism. Chia seeds also promote a feeling of fullness, helping in weight loss. Losing weight can lower your cholesterol.

6. Manages high blood pressure

Chia seeds contain potassium, which is beneficial for maintaining healthy blood pressure levels. Potassium helps balance sodium levels in the body, promoting optimal blood pressure and reducing the risk of hypertension and high cholesterol.

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7. Lowers triglycerides

High levels of triglycerides in the blood are associated with an increased risk of heart disease. According to a study, chia seeds, when combined with oats or soy, were shown to reduce triglyceride levels, contributing to improved cardiovascular health. The omega-3 fatty acids in chia seeds play a pivotal role.

triglycerides
High triglycerides can be managed with chia seeds. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

Beyond heart health, chia seeds provide a plethora of essential nutrients. Loaded with protein, essential minerals like calcium and magnesium, vitamins, antioxidants, and fibre, chia seeds are very beneficial for you.

How to eat chia seeds?

Adding chia seeds to your daily routine is easy. Here are 5 ways to eat chia seeds:

1. Chia seeds oatmeal

Mix chia seeds into your morning oatmeal for a nutrient-packed boost. Allow the seeds to absorb moisture, creating a gel-like consistency that blends seamlessly with the oats.

2. Chia seed water

Combine chia seeds with water and let them soak to form a hydrating, refreshing beverage. Add a splash of lemon or fruit for added flavor.

3. Chia seed salad

Sprinkle chia seeds over salads to enhance texture and nutritional content. The seeds provide a subtle crunch and work well with various salad ingredients.

4. Chia seed pudding

Prepare a delicious pudding by mixing chia seeds with milk and letting it refrigerate until thickened. Customize with sweeteners and toppings for a satisfying treat.

chia seeds pudding
Chia seeds can be used in many ways. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

5. Chia seeds smoothie

Blend chia seeds into your favorite smoothie for added thickness and nutritional value. The seeds contribute a subtle nutty flavor while boosting omega-3s and fiber content.

Enjoy the benefits of chia seeds in these ways and manage your heart health!

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About the Author

Aayushi Gupta is a health writer with a special interest in trends related to diet, fitness, beauty and intimate health. With around 2 years of experience in the wellness industry, she is connected to leading experts and doctors to provide our readers with factually correct information. ...Read More

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