Chia seeds VS flax seeds: differences and which are the healthiest?

Flax seeds and chia seeds are packed with benefits. But what are the differences and which are the best from a nutritional point of view?

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Chia seeds e flax seed they have tons of benefits, and they are also very versatile in the kitchen. They can be used as a salad dressing, in smoothies or in yogurt. These two suits are often considered interchangeable; however, they possess unique qualities that are worth highlighting. Let's find out the differences and which ones are healthier. 


Benefits of flax seeds

I flax seeds are rich in vitamin E, Omega-3 fatty acids and fiber. For starters, vitamin E is a fat-soluble vitamin important for eye health, the immune system, and for the prevention of heart disease. Flax seeds contain alpha-linoleic acid (ALA), which is a form of Omega-3 fatty acids that can improve memory, water retention and learning. Its fiber content also helps us feel fuller for longer, and keep our intestines regular.

Consumption of ground flaxseed is linked to one reduction of LDL cholesterol levels (the bad type) and improvement of HDL levels (the good type). They are also rich in lignan polyphenols, which can protect heart health and some tumors.

here are the nutritional values ​​for 2 tablespoons of flax seeds:

  • Fat: 10 g
  • Saturated fat: 1 g
  • Carbohydrates: 7 g
  • Fiber: 7 g
  • Sugar: 0 g
  • Protein: 4 g
  • Sodium: 5 mg

Benefits of chia seeds

I Chia seeds they are greyish-brown in color and derive from the Salvia hispanica plant. They are rich in soluble protein and fiber, capable of expanding in the digestive tract and increasing satiety. In addition, chia seeds can also help manage inflammation and reduce the risk of heart disease thanks to their content of omega-3 fatty acids. (Read also: Fill up on Omega 3 every day with a handful of flax seeds)

here are the nutritional values ​​for 2 tablespoons of chia seeds:

  • Fat: 9 g
  • Saturated fat: 1 g
  • Carbohydrates: 12 g
  • Fiber: 10 g
  • Sugar: 0 g
  • Protein: 5 g
  • Sodium: 5 mg

Flax seeds or chia seeds: which are the best?

Flax seeds have a stronger and richer flavor than the delicate chia seed. Also, flax seeds generally need to be ground, as it is easier for the body to absorb nutrients. Let's find out what the best according to your needs.

Which is best for digestion?

While the fiber content in flaxseeds is slightly lower than chia, around 8 grams versus 10, the former contain more insoluble fibers, beneficial for those suffering from constipation. Furthermore, the flax is easier to tolerate than chia for those with a more sensitive digestive system. It's also interesting to note that the fiber content of chia seeds will make you feel fuller for longer, but you may experience annoying swelling.

What is the best source of Omega-3s?

I flax and chia seeds both contain ALA, a form of Omega-3 found in nuts and seeds; however, flax seeds have slightly more ALA than chia seeds. In addition to offering healthy fats, flaxseed oil can also help aid in the absorption of vitamin D. 

Which is richer in protein?

Comparing the vegetable proteins, chia seeds have a slight advantage over flax seeds, because two tablespoons of chia seeds contain nearly 5 grams of plant-based protein.

How to use chia seeds

I chia seeds can be eaten whole or ground. When whole, they provide greater crunchiness and help increase satiety. On the plus side, their ability to absorb liquids makes them perfect as egg substitutes in vegan recipes. (Read also: Chia seeds: 10 ways to integrate them into your daily diet)

Some recipes with chia seeds:

  • Quinoa and cauliflower vegetable meatballs with chia seeds and turmeric
  • Chia pudding: how to make chia pudding
  • Crunchy quinoa, walnuts and chia seeds
  • Chickpea broccoli veggie burgers with chia seeds
  • Savory sunflower pie with chard and chia seeds
  • Savory puff pastry swirls: easy recipe with spinach and chia seeds
  • Steamed apple, cinnamon and chia seed muffins. Recipe without butter and without oven

How to use flax seeds

Flax seeds, especially when ground, can be used as a condiment on any dish, from salads to breakfast cereals to soups. Also, when mixed with water, as do chia seeds, they release a gelatinous substance that makes them perfect egg substitutes in vegan recipes.

Some recipes with flax seeds:

  • Coffee muffins with flax seeds (vegan recipe)
  • Wholemeal apple pie with flax seeds
  • The sweetness of flax seeds: 10 veg cakes and sweets to use them
  • Energy bars with cereals, 10 recipes to make them at home with genuine ingredients

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