Can Chia Seeds Help You Lose Weight?

February 3rd, 2011
Can Chia Seeds Help You Lose Weight?

The Chia plant is a well known product used in the manufacture of terracotta figurines in the USA. However recent research has suggested that the seeds of the Chia plant may also be useful in reducing weight.

Diet books have for some time been advocating taking the seeds as a supplement and appetite suppressant, but they have largely been ignored till now by mainstream medicine.

Chia is native to Mexico and Guatemala where the Aztecs cultivated it. The seeds are considered very nutritious with a tremendous and balanced amount of protein and fibre. It’s the latter in particular that some people believe is the key in its use in appetite suppression and hence weight loss.

However scientists recently carried out a number of studies into the efficacy of chia seeds. One in 2009 took a group of 76 volunteers and split them into 2 groups. Both groups were comprised of overweight and obese men and women. One group was given 25 grams of chia seeds twice a day, while the second group was offered a placebo.

After 12 weeks scientists found no significant difference in either appetite or weight loss.

More recently, a group of researchers reviewed the evidence of this and other studies and came to the same conclusion that chia seeds had no effect on weight loss. Further, the study looked into other medical benefit claims including cardiovascular, and found it had no beneficial effect.

While the group did say eating chia seeds was not harmful they also believe more research was needed.

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