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Chia seeds and bloating

Black Chia Seeds

08 April

Written by: Nature’s Superfoods Team

Chia Seeds have been a popular go-to superfood for the health-conscious in the last decade. These tiny seeds boast great amounts of anti-inflammatory Omega 3 fatty acids, complete protein with all essential amino acids, dietary fiber, calcium and more! 

The health benefits of consuming chia include:

  •  improved immunity
  • blood pressure control
  • blood sugar control
  • improved bowel movement
  • joint & skin health, and many more! 

Generally speaking, most people will not experience any discomfort from consuming Chia Seeds when they consume the seeds in the proper way, which is to soak Chia Seeds in water/liquids, stir and let sit for some time (5 minutes or more – the longer the better) before consumption. The hydrated seeds will expand in size and become somewhat gelatinous – better for digestion. 

Can Chia Seeds Cause Bloating ?

The truth is – they can. Chia Seeds absorb 15-20 times their weight in water. When chia seeds move through the gut, they draw water from the intestine area, like a sponge. These seeds expand in your stomach, which leads to bloating.

How to Prevent Chia Bloat ?

  1. Always soak your seeds (5 minutes or more – the longer the better) in water/liquids- remember to stir to break clumps before the soak. Allow the seeds to absorb water and bloat first prior to consumption. 
  2. Build up your chia intake slowly – start with 1 teaspoon. Another reason why chia seeds might cause bloating is that you’re suddenly eating too much in one go. About 1-2 tbsp of chia seeds is all you need in a day.
  3. Drink lots of water with Chia Seeds. Chia Seeds are very high in dietary fibre- over 9g in 1 ounce (28g). The sudden massive increase in fibre level in your diet can cause bloating, gas, and constipation if the overall water intake is insufficient. You can relieve this discomfort by increasing your fluid intake and exercising. 
  4. Alternatively, blend the seeds in smoothies -creating finer particles for easier digestion in the body. Or you can grind chia seeds with a grinder or food processor, and then sprinkle the ground chia on foods. 
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