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6 Impressive Health Benefits of Chia Seeds

These tiny ancient seeds, favoured by the Aztecs and Mayans (the word means “strength” in their language), provide major nutrients with minimal calories.

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1. Chia Seeds Control Appetite

Chia seeds contain 11 grams of fibre per ounce—that’s 42 per cent of your recommended daily value in just one serving! How it works: Chia expands in your gut, curbing your appetite. Add to a breakfast smoothie or yogurt to feel fuller longer. Dr. Oz recommends stirring two tablespoons of seeds into a glass of water to ward off afternoon cravings.

Here are 30 other ways to get more fibre in your diet.

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2. Chia Seeds Support Strong Bones

One ounce of seeds also delivers 18 per cent of the recommended daily value of calcium. If you’re lactose intolerant or aren’t a big milk drinker, these little seeds can help provide the calcium your bones need to stay strong and prevent osteoporosis, according to Dr. Oz.

Here are 10 foods that are great sources of calcium.

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3. Chia Seeds May Help You Sleep

These seeds are tiny bundles of tryptophan, according to sharecare.com, and that amino acid raises melatonin and serotonin levels. These are the hormones that support stable sleep.

Doing these things every night might help you sleep, too!

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4. Chia Seeds Help Control Blood Sugar

Chia’s high fibre content slows the conversion of carbohydrates to sugar and of sugar to fat during digestion, as per diabeticconnect.com. This helps keep blood sugar levels steady.

Here are 8 Sneaky Things That Raise Your Blood Sugar Levels.

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5. Chia Seeds Moisturize the Skin

Chia seeds are also available in serum form. Nicholas Perricone, MD, suggests applying it directly to dry skin or cuticles for immediate relief. You can also add a few drops to your regular lotion for extra moisturizing power. The high omega-3 content means these seeds have anti-inflammatory properties, which can diminish redness and revive dry skin.

Find out how to make your skin glow naturally with these expert tips.

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6. Chia Seeds Protect the Heart

These seeds are packed with omega-3 fatty acids, even more than flax seeds and salmon, and this healthy fat is key to a healthy heart. High blood fat levels increases your risk of developing heart disease, and omega-3s have been shown to lower triglyceride levels.

These omega-3-rich foods might add years to your life.

Originally Published in Reader's Digest