Chia seeds have been around for centuries, but modern science is only just starting to explore their benefits. Research is showing that there are many benefits of chia seeds for runners.
In the past, chia seeds were cultivated to give Aztec warriors the energy they needed to march for hundreds of miles. Native Americans ate them to help them survive trading missions and forced relocations. With such a rich history, it should be no surprise that there are four major benefits of chia seeds for runners.
1. Reduce the Pain
One of the benefits of chia seeds for runners involves pain management and prevention. Chia seeds have high concentration of Omega-3 fatty acids. In fact, an article in the International Journal of Food Science and Technology explains that they have a 3:1 ratio of Omega-3s to Omega-6s. Omega-3s have been known to combat pain in joints and may even prevent joint pain.
Pain from asthma may also be helped by the omegas in chia seeds. An Indiana University study showed that three weeks of supplementing omegas improved some of the effects of asthma in about 64% of participants.
2. Better Diet
In order to improve your performance, you need to put the right type of fuel in your gas tank. Eating healthy is the only way to do this, but eating healthy isn't easy. Chia seeds can help you maintain a healthy diet, one of the other benefits of chia seeds for runners.
If you're on a strict diet, you may be low on certain vitamins and minerals. This can cause you to crave certain foods. Chia seeds contain high amounts of calcium. If your body is low on calcium, you may find that ingesting chia seeds keeps away cravings for calcium and calorie-rich foods. The seeds also contain elements that help you absorb vitamins and minerals, so you make the most of what you are eating.
Eating chia may help you keep your diet by flavoring your food. Salads get a great crunch when chia seeds are sprinkled over the top. They also absorb enough water to have almost ten times as much weight, and this distributes more flavor among your food. This same quality can keep you feeling fuller, even when you're eating less. This is one of the major benefits of chia seeds for runners.
3. Extend Your Energy
As one of the other benefits of chia seeds for runners, chia seeds provide you with a great deal of energy. They are 20% protein, which can help you endure long and fast runs. In just two tablespoons of chia seeds, there are about 4 grams of protein (www.runnersworld.com).
One of the reasons that chia seeds are now considered one of the superfoods is that they have high levels of antioxidants. Whether you are in a competition or just running for pleasure, you will reap the benefits of chia seeds for runners.
4. Stay Hydrated
To completely understand the benefits of chia seeds for runners, you need to think about hydration. One of the worst things that can happen to a runner is to become dehydrated. No amount of willpower can push you through dehydration; you simply can't go. The absorptive power of chia seeds makes them the perfect tool to keep you hydrated, just another one of the many benefits of chia seeds for runners.
Like some of the expensive hydration drinks you can buy, chia seeds keep you going. In the Clymb, blogger Audra Rundle explains the hydration benefits of the seeds: "They can help keep runners hydrated for longer while also helping maintain electrolyte levels." They are an ideal hydration tool.
The high absorption of the seeds make a gel coating that helps you, "By slowing that breakdown process, chia seeds provide runners with a longer period of time (aka, longer endurance) before they hit a sugar crash, causing them to slow down, feel weaker, and/or feel lightheaded" (the Clymb). Instead of spending time consuming energy drinks, carrying added weight with you and ingesting their bad sugars you can get better effects and eat chia seeds. There are clear benefits of chia seeds for runners.
Because of the many benefits of chia seeds for runners, they make for the perfect addition to any runner's diet. It's a natural way to improve performance. Take our health test, and find out how else you can improve your performance.