Chia seeds are an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants and fiber. Chia seeds are very hydrophilic — they readily absorb water, as you can see when you add them to drinks and they swell up to form a 'gel.' Because of this, it is very important to consume only organic chia seeds, since non-organic chia is frequently sprayed with pesticides, fungicides and chemical fertilizers, which soak into the seed and cannot be washed off.
Chia Gel: Blood Sugar & Weight Loss
Studies also show that eating chia seed slows down our body's conversion of carbohydrate into simple sugars. When you soak chia in water (or consume it in your smoothie) the seeds swell and form a clear gel (caused by chia's high soluble fiber content). This gel creates a physical barrier between carbohydrates and the digestive enzymes that break them down, slowing the conversion of carbohydrates into sugar. In addition to the obvious benefits for diabetics, this also helps to create a slow-burn or timed-release of carbohydrate for sustainable energy, diminishing the highs and lows we can feel after consuming sugars or simple carbohydrates. This makes Chia perfect for helping to control weight: mixed with orange or other fruit juice, the gel-like seeds make a nutritious breakfast that leaves one feeling full and without hunger until noon.