Chia seeds are the edible seeds of the plant Salvia Hispanica, a Central American plant that is part of the mint family. This superfood was used in ancient times by the Incan and Aztec civilization as an easily stored, carried and consumed source of energy and nutrition. They would carry bags of seeds with them wherever they went, and add it into their drinking water in order to provide them with a quick superfood. Today, Chia seeds are very popular and recognized for their many health benefits and high levels of nutrition. Let’s take a more in-depth dive into what exactly Chia seeds have to offer:
Effects on Immunity
While you are not likely to consume 100g of Chia seeds, the fact remains that pound for pound, their nutritional density is impressive.
Chia seeds are very high in mineral content, providing large amounts of Magnesium, Manganese, Calcium, Iron Copper and Phosphorus and Zinc. These minerals are essential in building tissues and Cells. In your immune system, minerals allow your immune cells to multiply, learn their functions and to communicate with one another.
They also contain Thiamine and Niacine, two essential B-Vitamins which play an array of roles in your body as well.
Chia seeds are also full of soluble fiber which feed your Gut Microbiome. This alone provides a host of benefits.
Gut Microbiome health has been proven to be essential in avoiding the worst of COVID symptoms.
B3, Niacin- This vitamin is important in prevention and repair of lung damage. It has been used previously for patients who have suffered lung damage from ventilator use.
B1, Thiamine– This nutrient has been shown to increase immune response and help in treatment of cancer, diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Those with Thiamine deficiency have been shown to have increased inflammation and aberrant antibody activity. Antibodies, as a part of the adaptive immunity are integral in dealing with extended infection as well as variants.
Magnesium – Magnesium has been found to have significance in COVID infection as it allows your Macrophages to convert from type 1 to type 2. 1 This changes their function form inflammation creation (needed in initial immune response) to inflammation regulation (needed for prolonged immune response). In light of recent research that pinpoints inflammation as the cause of severe and fatal COVID infection, it is important to get enough Mangesium.
Because of the soluble fiber found in Chia seeds, they make a good match for probiotic foods like yoghurt and kefir. A meal that includes both of these as well as some fruits packs a potent immunity boost!
Chia plants are actually quite easy to grow and are therefore mostly organic. If you want to try your hand in growing some of your own, take a look at this guide.
Remember organic food is free of harmful residues that may negate the benefits of even the most nutritious products. Growing your own is always the best choice if you have the space.