Many of you have heard of flaxseed and how nutritional it is for us to include in our diets, but have you heard of chia seeds and how beneficial it is? Please note – I am not an expert in nutrition, just a women who has been eating flaxseeds for 4 years and chia seeds for a little over a year and wanted to relay what I know about them to you and the benefits I have had by consuming flaxseed almost daily.
- First and foremost, flaxseed is a wonderful source of fiber. Fiber seems to be the hardest nutrient for me to grasp and it’s so important for us women to get our fair share each day.
- Flaxseed is loaded with essential fatty acids (“essential” – meaning that they must be consumed because our bodies don’t make them)
Note: It’s been written and noted that flaxseed can cause bloating so you’ll want to start out small (1 tbl or less) and build up. Also, very important – flaxseed because of its thick husk must be grounded in order to work at its best and to be digested well. Don’t grind until you’re ready to eat them. Once ground, flaxeed has about a 2 week shelf life. I keep mine whole in the freezer, then once I grind, I keep them in the frig or up in the shelf as I eat them almost everyday.
Add these wonderful seeds to everything! Oatmeal, yogurt, pancake mix, smoothies, on top of a sweet potato, etc. For the most part, I buy my flaxseed at Sprouts, and I have purchased Chia seeds only once thru Vitacost.
- Chia seeds can help you lose weight b/c they reduce food cravings
- Chia seeds make you feel full faster
- They are the richest plant source for Omega-3
- I’ve read that they reduce blood pressure – but I don’t know that for a fact.
Chia seeds can be eaten raw, and in your favorite hot cereal, yogurt, and also in breads, cakes and biscuits. They are small enough to hide in foods – perfect to do so to give your little ones the benefits too!
Dr. Oz says, “They just may be one of the healthiest things around.”
Flaxseed Vs. Chia Seed – The Differences
- Chia seeds are easier to digest and do not need to be ground up first. So you’ll need to invest in a grinder to eat flaxseed.
- Chia seeds cost more per pound than flaxseed – a lot more! Last time I checked at Sprouts – Flax was $1.19 a lb. and Chia was $9.99 a lb. Yep!
- You can’t really taste flaxseeds but chia seeds taste like the ground – dirt! Really, they do. So don’t add too much. Chia seeds definitely have an acquired taste and takes time to get used to.
- Flaxseeds are more well-known than chia seeds and have been studied more.
- They both contain protein – flax contains more, but chia is a complete protein, flax is not.
- They both are rich in Omega-3 – chia has just a tad bit more per ounce.
- Chia is higher in antioxidants and do not go rancid quickly, flax on the other hand will. Always store flax in the freezer or frig.
- Chia seeds are higher in fiber with 10.6 grams vs. 7.6 grams in flaxseeds
Bottom Line: They are both very nutritional and are an excellent source of fiber and protein and Omega-3 which are highly beneficial to women as well as to men. With what I read, it says Chia Seeds are the better of the two. I say, go out and buy them both and eat them every day. I feel good, no doubt flaxseed is a huge part of how I feel today. I don’t eat chia seeds every day and when I do I only eat a very little b/c if I get too much my whole meal will taste funny. I usually put chia in my oatmeal. I’m going to start putting it on veggies now – after doing some research while writing this post, I realized just how beneficial chia seeds can be, so despite the cost, I shall continue to eat them at least 4 times a week.
And….just when flaxseed and chia seeds have made their way into our lives, here comes hemp seed. I know nothing about that nut at the moment.
Have you tried Flaxseed and/or Chia Seeds? Which is your favorite and why?