Chia Seeds vs Flax Seeds: Which One is Better for You?
Chia Seeds and flax seeds belong to the nuts and seeds food group, an important group for a healthy diet, as they provide a wide range of essential nutrients, such as protein, healthy fats, dietary fiber, and vitamins and minerals.
In this article, we’ll put a spotlight on chia seeds and flax seeds and compare their similarities and differences.
They both provide a variety of nutrients and are relatively high in calories, like other nuts and seeds.
Chia seeds (Salvia hispanica) are small, black seeds that come from the chia plant, which is native to Central and South America.
These seeds have gained popularity recently as a health food due to their high fiber and nutrient content.
Chia seeds have a slightly nutty and slightly earthy flavor and can be eaten raw or cooked.
They can be added to a variety of dishes, including smoothies, cereals, and baked goods, or used as a topping for salads and other dishes.
Chia seeds are also available in oil form, which can be used in cooking or as a salad dressing.
Chia seeds are a good source of fiber, protein, and healthy fats, including omega-3 fatty acids.
They are also a good source of various vitamins and minerals, including calcium, magnesium, and iron.
Overall, chia seeds are a nutritious and versatile food that can be a valuable addition to a plant-based diet.
If you’re looking to add more fiber, protein, and healthy fats to your diet, consider giving chia seeds a try. They are versatile, nutritious, and may have a variety of health benefits.
Chia Seeds are an excellent source of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), and Vitamin B3 (Niacin).
They also contain a good amount of Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), and Vitamin B9 (Folate).
Flax seeds (Linum usitatissimum) are small, golden, or brown seeds that have a nutty and slightly earthy flavor.
These seeds have been used for centuries as food and for their medicinal properties and are now gaining popularity as a health food.
Flax seeds are a good source of fiber, protein, and omega-3 fatty acids, making them a valuable addition to a plant-based diet.
They are also high in lignans, which are plant compounds that have been shown to have antioxidant and estrogen-like effects.
There are many ways to incorporate flax seeds into your diet. They can be eaten raw or ground into a meal and can be added to various dishes, including smoothies, baked goods, and even savory dishes.
Flax seeds are also available in oil form, which can be used as a healthy alternative to vegetable oil in cooking.
It is important to note that flax seeds should be ground before consumption, as the whole seeds may pass through the digestive system undigested.
They should also be stored in the refrigerator or freezer to keep them fresh and prevent them from going rancid.
If you want to add more fiber, protein, and healthy fats to your diet, consider giving flax seeds a try. They are versatile, nutritious, and may have various health benefits.
Flax Seeds are an excellent source of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), and Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine).
They also contain a good amount of Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), Vitamin B3 (Niacin), Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid), and Vitamin B9 (Folate) and some Vitamin K.
Chia Seeds vs Flax Seeds Nutrition
Now that we’ve described the origin, taste, and usage of these foods, we can move to the most interesting part – comparing chia seeds vs flax seeds.
This comparison will start by comparing the caloric value of chia seeds and flax seeds and their macronutrients and then go more in-depth by analyzing their vitamin and mineral contents.
Chia Seeds vs Flax Seeds Calories
Nuts and seeds are generally high in calories; the same goes for chia seeds and flax seeds, so you should consume them in moderation.
According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), a proper serving is one ounce, which is roughly equal to 1/4 cup or 28 grams.
To keep the portions under control, the amounts correspond to one serving size: 14 walnut halves, 16 cashews, 24 almonds, 28 peanuts, or 45 pistachios.
Comparing chia seeds vs flax seeds for weight loss, chia seeds are slightly lower in calories, with 136 calories per serving, compared to 150 calories per serving of flax seeds.
However, both chia seeds and flax seeds can and should be a part of a healthy diet, and neither one shouldn’t be avoided if you’re looking to lose weight. It’s just important to eat them in moderation.
Chia Seeds vs Flax Seeds Protein
Nuts and seeds, including chia seeds and flax seeds, are an important source of plant-based protein.
Flax Seeds offer around 10% more protein than chia seeds.
Flax Seeds have 18.3 grams of protein per 100 grams (or 5.1g per serving), while chia seeds have 16.5 grams of protein per 100 grams (or 4.6g per serving).
Chia Seeds vs Flax Seeds Carbs
Counting carbs can be important for some people for different reasons, including blood sugar control, weight management, or athletic performance.
It’s also important for people on a keto diet, so let’s compare the carbs content in chia seeds and flax seeds.
The total amount of carbohydrates is around 31% higher in chia seeds than in flax seeds. They have 42.1 grams per 100 grams, compared to 28.9 grams in flax seeds.
There’s less sugar in chia seeds than in flax seeds, 100% precisely.
One handful of chia seeds (28 grams) contains 0 grams of sugar, while the same amount of flax seeds contains 0.4 grams.
Lastly, let’s take a look at the dietary fiber in chia seeds and flax seeds.
Dietary fiber keeps the digestive system healthy and helps with weight management by promoting a sense of fullness.
With 9.6 grams of fiber per portion, chia seeds are a better source of fiber than flax seeds which offer 7.6 grams per portion.
Chia Seeds vs Flax Seeds Fats
Like the other nuts and seeds, fats in chia seeds and flax seeds are a great source of healthy unsaturated fats, naturally cholesterol free, and free of trans fats.
Total fat in chia seeds and flax seeds:
- Chia Seeds: 30.7 grams per 100 grams
- Flax Seeds: 42.2 per 100 grams
Speaking of saturated fats, chia seeds are 11% lower in saturated fats.
Chia Seeds and flax seeds contain 3.3 grams and 3.7 grams of saturated fat per 100 grams, respectively.
Chia Seeds vs Flax Seeds Vitamins Content
This section will discuss the vitamin content of chia seeds and flax seeds.
Vitamins are micronutrients, meaning we need only a small amount. However, they are very important for many processes in our bodies.
Chia Seeds have a higher amount of vitamin B1 (Thiamine), vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid), vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine), vitamin B9 (Folate), and vitamin K.
However, flax seeds have a higher amount of vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), vitamin B3 (Niacin), and vitamin E.
Chia Seeds and flax seeds contain the same amount of vitamin D, and vitamin B12 (Cobalamin).
The following table shows the exact amount of vitamins chia seeds and flax seeds contain side by side, so you can easily compare them.
|Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)
|Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)
|Vitamin B3 (Niacin)
|Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid)
|Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine)
|Vitamin B9 (Folate)
|Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin)
Chia Seeds vs Flax Seeds Minerals Content
Minerals are important for our body to function properly. We need only a small amount of minerals, so they are called micronutrients.
Some minerals, like iron, calcium, zinc or, iodine, are relatively hard to get on a plant-based diet, so it’s important to choose your foods thoughtfully. This part of the chia seeds and flax seeds comparison focuses on their mineral content.
Chia Seeds are a better source of copper, magnesium, potassium, and sodium than flax seeds.
On the other hand, flax seeds have a higher amount of calcium, iron, manganese, phosphorus, selenium, and zinc.
Chia Seeds and flax seeds contain the same amount of fluoride.
Check out the table below to learn how chia seeds and flax seeds compare when it comes to mineral contents.
The Final Word
Chia Seeds and flax seeds are highly nutritious and excellent sources of plant-based protein and healthy fats.
Although they are relatively high in calories, they are essential to a healthy, plant-based diet and are linked to many health benefits.
Both chia seeds and flax seeds are high in specific vitamins and minerals, and including them in your diet will give you the most benefits they offer.
Nuts and seeds are versatile foods, and can be part of any meal or salad, just be sure to eat them moderately, as they are loaded with calories.
Nuts and seeds are versatile foods and can be part of any meal or salad, just be sure to eat them moderately, as they are loaded with calories.
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