Chia Seeds Have Cancer-Fighting Molecules? 5 Other Health Benefits

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May 11, 2015 08:38 AM EDT

The Mayan and Aztec staple chia seeds were found to have cancer-fighting molecules by an 18-year-old from Canada.

Quebec teen Olivier Cloutier discovered that chia seeds extracts are great for preventing the growth and propagating cell death in human colon cancer cells, called HCT116.

He won first place in the Hydro-Québec Science Expo last April for his work, according to CBC Montreal. His prize earned him a ticket to a Belgium science fair and free tuition at a university.

"For the past few months I've been working on the development for an experimental cure against colorectal cancer based on the extraction of certain types of molecules of chia seeds," Cloutier said. He is currently collaborating with a small pharmacology company.

Chia seeds have been tagged as one of the healthiest substances on the planet and even dubbed as a "super food." According to SF Gate, chia seeds are packed with fiber, antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids, magnesium, phosphorus, calcium and manganese.

Here are some of the health benefits of chia seeds:

1.) Chia seeds are low in calories but are dense in nutrients.

For those who are watching their weight, chia seeds may be your new best friend. According to Eco Watch, an ounce of chia seeds contains the following:

  • 11 grams of fiber
  • 4 grams of protein
  • 9 grams of fat
  • 18% RDA calcium
  • 30% RDA manganese
  • 30% RDA magnesium
  • 27% RDA phosphorus
  • Amounts of zinc, niacin, potassium, thiamine and vitamin B2

2.) Chia seeds reduce heart disease risk

According to Dr. Axe, chia seeds are heart healthy. It is high in omega-3 that contains anti-inflammatory properties, ability to regulate cholesterol and reduce blood pressure.

3.) Chia seeds promote strong teeth and bone health

These seeds are high in calcium and each serving contains 18 percent of the recommended daily intake. In addition, it can prevent osteoporosis and help treat arthritis, inflammation and joint aches, according to Top 10 Home Remedies.

4.) Chia seeds can boost energy and improve metabolism

Chia seeds are high in protein and while this can help build muscles, it can also help boost your energy and improve the metabolism, according to

5.) Chia seeds have many skin benefits

In addition to eating these seeds for health, you can also use them in beauty regimens. Each seed is rich in antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids which are essential in reducing inflammation, restoring moisture and reducing wrinkles, according to Perricone MD.

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