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Exposed: Get The Most Out Of Chia Seeds by Soaking Them!

Exposed: Get The Most Out Of Chia Seeds by Soaking Them!

You can’t look at any health blog these days without reading about the amazing benefits of eating chia seeds. While this superfood reaps lots of positivity for our health, there has been some negative side effects depending on how we prepare them.

Do we eat them dry or soak them first? Both methods are safe when it comes to consumption but the problem comes if chia seeds are eaten dry and not enough fluids are being taken in alongside them as this can actually cause gastrointestinal problems such as constipation, bloating and gas. So should we always soak them first?

WHAT?! The Benefits of Chia Seeds May Actually Harm Some of Us?

Chia seeds do live up to their hype. They can inject a high amount of fibre, protein, calcium, antioxidants and omega-3s into our diet.The problem is that their high fibre content may be what’s the biggest issue.

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Unless you’re very conscientious about your fibre intake, most people don’t actually get enough fibre on a daily basis. Introducing chia seeds will increase soluble fibre intake massively and if the body isn’t used to this then constipation can occur.

Another problem is that chia seeds are highly absorbent and soak up a lot of fluid. When soaked fully, they form a gel. If you’re ingesting them dry, you can imagine how much liquid they soak up within the body making constipation an even bigger threat. But by soaking them [1] prior to consumption, you make it much easier to digest eliminating the chance of constipation or other stomach problems.

The Benefits of Soaking Chia Seeds

There are multiple benefits to soaking chia seeds so before you sprinkle your dry seeds on top of your morning porridge, see why you should soak them first.

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1. It Takes Away Natural Negative Properties

While chia seeds are pretty amazing, as a seed they do contain phytic acid. Nuts and seeds all contain this acid because it helps boost the plant to grow initially. Unfortunately, it isn’t always compatible with the human body and can impair the absorption of iron, zinc and calcium.[2]

Simply soaking chia seeds actually releases this acid and stops it from binding to essential minerals and nutrients and stops it blocking these from being absorbed by the body.

2. It Cleans Your Gut

The mucilage (or soluble fibre) that’s contained in chia seeds, helps remove unwanted items in the digestive tract as it moves through. [3] As this mucilage can absorb up to 27 times its weight in water, soaking chia seeds before consumption will make this process much more efficient and prevent them from absorbing essential fluid in the body.

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3. It Creates ACE Inhibitors

ACE inhibitors are used synthetically to treat cardiovascular problems and high blood pressure by pharmaceuticals but when soaked, the enzymes contained in chia seeds obtain this ACE inhibitor naturally.[4] This goes towards getting a healthier heart and all the health benefits that go with it.

Therefore, soaking your chia seeds is much more beneficial to your body than eating them dry from the packet. Simply soaking this superfood in water before you eat it will have your body thanking you and allow it a better chance of getting the true benefits of this miracle seed!

How To Soak Chia Seeds At Home?

It’s really simple and easy to soak your chia seeds but a bit of preparation goes a long way. The rule is that there’s really no way you can soak chia seeds for too long.

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Just placing some chia seeds into a container with a ratio of 1/3 cup of chia seeds to 2 cups of water, giving it a good shake and placing it in the refrigerator overnight is all you have to do.

If you want a quick method you can soak for 2-3 hours which is enough time for the seeds to form the mucilage gel.

For extra health benefits you can replace water with regular milk or almond milk to make a great breakfast or simply add a squeeze of orange or lemon juice to the water to boost your vitamin C intake.

So go ahead and soak those chia seeds and soak up the benefits while you’re at it!

Reference

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Jenny Marchal

A passionate writer who loves sharing about positive psychology.

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Last Updated on December 9, 2019

5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

Everyone experiences mental stress at one time or another. Maybe you’re starting a new career, job, or business, or you feel incredibly overwhelmed between work, parenting, and your love life (or a lack of it). It could even be that you simply feel that you have way too much to do and not enough time to do it,  plus, on top of everything, nothing seems to be going the way it should!

Yup, we all experience mental stress from time-to-time, and that’s okay as long as you have the tools, techniques and knowledge that allow you to fully relieve it once it comes.

Here are 5 tips for relieving mental stress when it comes so you can function at your best while feeling good (and doing well) in work, love, or life:

1. Get Rationally Optimistic

Mental stress starts with your perception of your experiences. For instance, most people get stressed out when they perceive their reality as “being wrong” in some way. Essentially, they have a set idea of how things “should be” at any given moment, and when reality ends up being different (not even necessarily bad), they get stressed.

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This process is simply a result of perception and can be easily “fixed” by recognizing that although life might not always be going as YOU think it should, it’s still going as it should—for your own benefit.

In fact, once you fully recognize that everything in your life ultimately happens for your own growth, progress, and development—so you can achieve your goals and dreams—your perception works in your favor. You soon process and respond to your experience of life differently, for your advantage. That’s the essence of becoming “rationally optimistic.”

The result: no more mental stress.

2. Unplug

Just like you might need to unplug your computer when it starts acting all crazy, you should also “unplug” your mind.

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How on earth do you unplug your mind? Simple: just meditate.

It isn’t nearly difficult or complicated as some people think, so, if you don’t already meditate, give it a try. Whether you meditate for 5 minutes, 30 minutes, or 2 hours, this is a surefire way to reduce mental stress.

Meditation has been scientifically proven to relax your body (resulting in less mental stress), while also reducing anxiety and high blood pressure.

3. Easy on the Caffeine

Yes, we know, we know—everyone loves a nice java buzz, and that’s okay, but there’s a fine line between a small caffeine pick-me-up and a racing heart and mind that throws you into a frenzy of mental stress.

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Try giving up caffeine for a while and see how you feel. And, if that’s completely out of the question for you, at least try to minimize it. You might find that lots of your mental stress mysteriously “disappears” as your caffeine intake goes down.

4. Attack Mental Stress Via the Back Door

That’s right: your body and mind are part of the whole being, and are constantly influencing and affecting each other. If you’re experiencing a lot of mental stress, try to reduce it by calming your body down—a calm body equals a calmer mind.

How do you calm your body down and reduce physical stress? A  great way to reduce physical stress (thereby reducing mental stress) is to take natural supplements that are proven to reduce stress and anxiety while lifting your mood. Three good ones to look into are kava-kava, St John’s wort, and rhodiola rosea:

  • Kava-kava is a natural plant known to have mild sedative properties, and you should be able to find it at your natural health food store or vitamin store. It’s available in capsules or liquid extract form.
  • St John’s wort is a natural flower used to treat depression. Again, it’s found at your local health store in capsules or liquid. Because it uplifts mood (enabling you to see the brighter side of all experiences) it helps relieve mental stress as well.
  • Rhodiola rosea is a natural plant shown to reduce stress and uplift mood, and Russian athletes have been using it forever. Like the other two supplements mentioned, rhodiola rosea can be found at your natural health store in capsule or liquid form.

While these supplements are all natural and can be very helpful for most people, always check with your health care provider first as they can cause side-effects depending on your current health situation etc.

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5. Good Old-Fashioned Exercise

This tip has been around forever because it works. Nothing relieves mental stress like running, kickboxing—you name it. Anything super-physical will wipe out most of your mental stresses once the exercise endorphins (happy chemicals) are released into your brain.

The result: mental stress will be gone!

So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed or just plain stressed, try using some of the above tips. You can even print this out or save it to refer to regularly.

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Featured photo credit: Radu Florin via unsplash.com

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