Eating too much chia seeds may cause adverse effects in some people. Chia seeds allergies, Digestion problems, and weight gain are all possible side effects. Chia seeds, on the other hand, are a suitable and nutritious supplement to a balanced diet for the majority of people.
Chia seeds are edible seeds that come from the Salvia Hispanica plant, which is a member of the mint family. These tiny dark seeds are a nutrient-dense meal high in omega-3 fatty acids and other important bioactive compounds Trusted Source.
Consumption of chia seeds may have health benefits such as lowering blood pressure, reducing inflammation, and improving digestion.
Those with diabetes, high blood pressure, or allergies, on the other hand, may have negative effects if they consume big amounts of chia seeds. Overeating chia seeds can cause digestive problems, and eating too many of them might contribute to weight gain.
This article looks at the dangers and negative effects of consuming too many chia seeds, as well as the health benefits and alternatives.
Some risks of consuming Chia Seeds
People with allergies, diabetes, high blood pressure, or digestive problems may have certain negative effects from eating chia seeds. We’ll go over their effects on these diseases in more detail below.
Chia Seed Allergies:
In the scientific literature, there are just a few examples of Chia seeds allergy reaction. In fact, a study published in 2019 discovered what was thought to be the first chia seed allergy. However, the person involved had a medical history of grass pollen and cat dander allergies.
This person started eating chia seeds every day to lower their cholesterol, but after three days, they had anaphylaxis, a serious allergic reaction from which they survived.
Hypersensitivity reactions to plants in the same family have been observed in some situations. Anaphylaxis, contact dermatitis, and systemic allergic response are examples of these reactions.
Cross-sensitization is a risk with chia seeds. In persons with a sesame allergy, this is a reliable source. This indicates that chia seeds may cause an allergic reaction in people who already have a sesame allergy.
For Diabetes Patients
Because chia seeds are strong in fibre, they may help to reduce blood sugar levels. The fibre helps to avoid sudden and large spikes in blood sugar levels by slowing sugar absorption in the gut.
A doctor, on the other hand, calculates a patient’s insulin dosage exactly to avoid blood sugar spikes and drops. If someone consumes chia seeds on a regular basis, their blood sugar may drop to the point where they need to change their insulin dosage.
For Low Blood Pressure Patients
Chia seeds have also been linked to a reduction in blood pressure. This could be due to the fact that these tiny seeds are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which serve as blood thinners and lower blood pressure. However, more research into these notions is required by scientists.
Chia seeds are a nutrient-dense food. Their rough exterior, however, may make it harder for the body to break down, release, and digest them, according to a 2020 studyTrusted Source. However, this is true of the majority of seeds.
To promote normal digestion, most people should soak chia seeds in water before eating them or drink water while eating them. Ground chia seeds are also a good alternative to whole seeds since the body can absorb more of the nutritional advantages of chia seeds.
Alternatively, sprouted chia seeds can be used. The availability of chia seeds is improved by allowing them to germinate. Protein from a reliable source that boosts calcium levels.
Chia Seed and Prostate Cancer
Consumption of ALA has been linked to a higher risk of prostate cancer in several studies.
Chia seeds have a high concentration of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), an omega-3 fatty acid found predominantly in plants.
Omega-3 fatty acids are a necessary component of a healthy diet and have been demonstrated to benefit a variety of health conditions, including cognitive function and heart health.
Because they may be turned into docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) in modest levels, ALA fatty acids are especially significant for people who don’t eat fish.
Omega-3 fatty acids come in two active forms, both of which can be found in seafood.
Although omega-3 fatty acids are usually thought to be good for your health, recent research has linked ALA consumption to prostate cancer.
In fact, ALA consumption was linked to an elevated risk of advanced prostate cancer in a large observational research involving 288,268 males.
Another observational study found that people with the greatest omega-3 fatty acid concentrations in their blood had a greater risk of prostate cancer than those with lower levels.
However, studies on the subject remain inconclusive. ALA fatty acids have also been linked to a reduction in the risk of prostate cancer in other studies.
It’s important to keep in mind that these studies only looked at the link between ALA consumption and prostate cancer. They didn’t consider other factors that could have influenced the outcome. Hence the findings cannot be confirmed.
More research is needed to look into the probable link between ALA consumption and prostate cancer.
In general, chia seeds are beneficial for your digestive system because they’re high in fibre, but too much might irritate your stomach, according to Zellner. “Excessive fibre intake or concentrated fibre intake might produce symptoms like bloating, stomach pain, diarrhoea, constipation, or gas in some people,” she says. If you have Crohn’s disease or Irritable Bowel Syndrome, you should limit your chia seed intake, especially during a flare-up, according to Zellner.
“Start with a half-tablespoon and work your way up to a well-tolerated dosage that assists with your bowel motions if you’re wanting to cure or avoid constipation,” Guzar suggests. “Be mindful of your fluid intake because fibres need to be hydrated in order to travel through the gut easily.”
Common Symptoms of Chia Seeds Allergies
Chia seed allergy symptoms are common, as they are with other food allergies. The following are examples of mild symptoms:
- Rashes on the skin
- Eyes Watering
The following are examples of severe symptoms:
- Tongue, mouth, and throat swelling
- Breathing problems
- Vomiting or nausea
Chia Seeds Allergy Diagnosis
Because chia seed allergy happens in rare cases, it is important to have it recognized so that appropriate treatment can be given. Assuming it’s something else would lead to ineffective therapy and a worsening of the situation.
The best way to get a confirmed result is to seek aid from a formal diagnostic centre. A skin prick or skin scratch test is used to diagnose chia seed allergies.
To check for the emergence of rashes or bumps, a tiny piece of the skin is either pricked with a needle or scratched, and a small amount of allergen extract is put over the pierced or scratched skin. If the test is positive, the allergy to chia seeds has been proven.
Traeting Chia Seeds Allergies
Doctors normally advise a chia seed allergic patient to avoid eating the seeds in the future to avoid potentially dangerous results. It’s also a good idea to avoid mustard, sesame, oregano, and thyme as a preventative measure.
Antihistamines can be used to treat the symptoms of chia seed allergy. These are readily available over-the-counter. Prescribed steroid drugs are typically used to treat severe symptoms. Epinephrine (adrenaline) injections are used to treat anaphylaxis reactions. Individuals who are at risk of anaphylaxis should have epinephrine auto-injectors with them practically all of the time as a precaution. Close monitoring is required for their therapy to be complete, which can only be accomplished with a trip to the emergency room.
Do let us know in the comments if you have ever experienced any Chia seed allergy.