It might not have occurred to you before to eat seeds for weight loss, but they have been used by many men and women to do just that! Ten years ago, no-one knew what chia really was, and very few people in the West were using it. Nowadays, chia, flax, sunflower seeds and other tasty seeds are being blended into smoothies, sprinkled on cereal, and added to juices, pies, bread and pastries. Here’s how to use them yourself for maximum weight loss.
Seeds for weight loss
1. Chia seeds
Chia is one of the most popular seeds for weight loss because it’s one of the most palatable. They don’t really have much flavour, so they make the perfect based to add sweeteners and other ingredients to.
Chia seeds have been used by the Aztecs and other South American cultures since around 3500 B.C., when they were considered a staple food. They were so popular because of their omega 3 fatty acid content. They keep your blood sugar and appetite in check for hours. Don’t get scared – it’s good fat, so it will actually help your body break down the fat in your body with its helpful lipid dissolving enzymes.
They can be sprouted, yes, but you don’t necessarily have to sprout them and add them to a salad. A nicer way to incorporate them into your daily life is to add almond, low-fat milk or juice to them. When you leave them in liquid for 30 minutes, they make the liquid thick and turn it into a gel. This texture, which is a bit like tapioca pudding, makes a lovely dessert when you add some sweetener. Pop a teaspoon of agave nectar, honey or maple syrup into your glass and stir it in well.
Eat just an ounce of chia, add in some avocados, nuts, olive oil and coconut oil and enjoy better skin, less fluid retention, a happier brain and hormonal system, and of course, a lighter weight.
Flax, or linseed, is helpful for reducing cholesterol and blood sugar levels, so it’s a nice one to add in at any rate. When it comes to weight loss, getting some flax into your diet is perfect due to their fibre and omega 3 content.
Eating 30 grams of linseed every day helped a study group with metabolic syndrome maintain their abdominal fat, control their appetite and eat less than another group who drank a control drink.
Sounds ok, doesn’t it? If you want to start using flax for weight loss, just simply buy some fresh seeds and grind them yourself if you have the equipment or buy them already ground up from a local health food shop. Take 3 tablespoons every day. You can also buy flax seed oil and take a tablespoonful per day. Make sure it’s cold-pressed. If you don’t like swallowing it from a spoon, drizzle it onto your meals instead.
3. Mustard seeds
This spicy seed is believed to help increase the metabolism. There is some scientific evidence behind this. One American university declared that very hot foods can increase the metabolism by up to twenty percent for thirty minutes after consumption. Not bad.
You don’t want to be gulping down the yellow, processed mustard you might find in most people’s houses, though! Spicy or whole grain mustards are the ones that work best. The Mexican and Asian varieties are actually the finest metabolism increasers out there.
Adding in mustard is pretty simple. Just spread a little on sandwiches, mix some into your favourite dressings and glaze chicken and fish with it. Add in the mustard slowly, as some people are sensitive to spicy foods, especially those with IBS and other digestive woes. Mustard will give a boost to your diet.
4. Sunflower seeds
Sunflower seeds are tasty, good for your health and contain nutrients that can help you lose some weight. They are rich in B vitamins and fibre, copper, magnesium, zinc, selenium and iron! Full of fibre, they’re filling and help control cravings and hunger pangs when you’re decreasing meal portion sizes, and are also handily chock full of protein, which is great news if you’re also exercising.
Get the unsalted, natural seeds where possible. They won’t increase your blood pressure if they’re untoasted and unsalted. Add them to cereals, puddings, yogurt or fruit bowls, and enjoy their weight-reducing properties!