Chia Seeds Side Effects: Could These Harm You

Many such foods have vast health benefits to a large number, but they may be harmful to small people. One such food is chia seeds.

These seeds have high antioxidant properties and have a good effect on the heart. They are rich in omega-3 fatty acids and have many benefits to the body. 

But eating it on a large scale may be harmful to some people. So, we are here to let you know the other side of chia seeds.


Chia Seeds Side Effects

Eating anything beyond its consumption limit is harmful to the body. The body tends to accept one food at certain limits.

If you exceed that limit, then that becomes harmful to your body.

It’s said that you should not eat the same food daily because this leads to the accumulation of the same nutrients due to their excess amount in the body.

The body requires nutrients, vitamins, and minerals but if their ingestion is more than required they accumulate and create problems.

The same is the case with chia seeds. Following are their side effects.

  1. Probable Digestive Problems

    Chia seeds have a high amount of fiber present, thus, they may lead to constipation if consumed in a higher amount.

    For persons having piles or fissures, eating chia seeds may worsen their condition as they cause constipation.

    They may also cause diarrhea, bloating, and gas. Some researchers also say that chia seeds may exacerbate the situation of bowel syndrome-like Crohn’s disease.

    Chia seeds may cause inflammation and narrowing of the gastrointestinal tract.

    This gastrointestinal problem is what the researchers say about the effect of excessive chia seeds eating them on the digestive tract.

    Thus it leads to various digestive tract-related issues and leads to bleeding in severe cases.

    Bleeding may occur in the case of a person suffering from piles.

    If the constipation problem increases due to over-fiber consumption the condition of piles becomes worse leading to bleeding.

  2. Excessive ALA May Lead To Prostate Cancer

    Scientists and renowned researchers have found that excessive ALA ( alpha-linolenic acid) intake may be a probable cause of prostate cancer.

    Chia seeds have a sufficient amount of ALA present in it. This ALA is an omega-3 fatty acid that we often talk about.

    It’s good for health, but excessive consumption may lead to disorders like prostate cancer.

    ALA is found in most plant-based materials and seafood. So, for those who don’t consume seafood, chia seeds are a good source of ALA.

    ALA under normal conditions may prevent cancer of different types. But their higher amounts may lead to some types of cancer.

    Some scientific studies even associate the surplus ALA consumption with advanced forms of prostate cancer.

  3. Lowering Of Blood Pressure

    Omega-three fatty acids present in chia seeds are responsible for thinning the blood.

    The thinning of blood is good for your body unless you are already on the medicines for blood thinning.

    For example, people who suffer from low blood pressure are already prescribed blood-thinning medication.

    In the case of patients with cardiac asthma, they are also prescribed blood-thinning drugs.

    So for them, omega-three fatty acids in chia seed will be an excessive dose of blood thinning.

    Thus it may lead to some problems in those patients. Extra thinning of blood increases the clotting time in person.

    If any injury occurs in such cases it may lead to excessive loss of blood due to increased blood clotting time.

  4. Diabetes

    Chia seeds may interfere with the insulin dosage that your doctor has prescribed.

    Diabetes is a disease in which blood Insulin becomes unresponsive to increased blood glucose levels. In that case, artificial insulin is given.

    The doctors calculate this dosage of insulin very well based on your eating habits.

    But if you start consuming chia seeds, there may be an imbalance in your blood glucose levels.

    Chia seeds are rich in fiber that helps slow the absorption of sugar from the gut.

    This slow absorption prevents a rapid increase in blood sugar levels which means that your sugar level is significantly lower than it would have been without consuming chia seeds.

    So, ingesting the insulin dosage prescribed by your doctor will lead to a further decrease in the sugar level that might be significantly less than the normal level.

    Thus, you might require insulin dose adjustment from your doctors in this case.

  5. Effects On Pregnancy

    You need not worry; chia seeds have no significant effects on pregnancy. However, you might want to note that chia seeds are not listed as one of the foods to eat while pregnant.

    So, if you haven’t tried them before, restrain yourself from experimenting with consuming chia seeds. Consult your doctor about the right amount.

    Pregnancy leads to reducing the size of the digestive tract, which sometimes leads to constipation problems.

    Chia seeds have high amounts of fiber and may worsen the constipation problem in pregnant women if consumed in more amounts.

    So, start with consuming half a tablespoon daily or consult your doctor about the right amount for you.

  6. May Have Allergic Reactions

    Though allergy is not a usual concept and also it’s quite a complicated one.

    There are a large number of people suffering from allergies to varied foods. Even many times, people aren’t aware of the allergic reactions in their bodies.

    Chia seeds act as an allergen that causes allergy in the body due to hypersensitive reactions of the immune system.

    Chia seeds are one of the foods that may cause allergic reactions in some people though it’s a pretty rare case.

    It may lead to symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, itchy lips, or tongue. In the rarest case, chia seeds may also cause a severe allergy, which is anaphylactic shock.

    This anaphylaxis is a fatal form of allergy that causes breathlessness and choking of the throat and chest.

What Are Chia Seeds?

Chia seeds are the edible seed part of the plant that belongs to the mint family (Lamiaceae)). The scientific name of the plant is Salvia Hispanic.

 It is a flowering plant that is native to Mexico and Guatemala. One more plant called Salvia columbariae is known as chia or golden chia.

Chia seeds are small oval and appear bottle-colored brown, gray, and sometimes white. These seeds tend to absorb water up to 12 times their self-weight.

This property of chia seeds to form a gummy coat around itself when soaked in water is due to its hydrophilic nature.

This mucilaginous coat gives a gelatinous appearance to the beverages in which chia seeds are added.

Seeds are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. It has about 16 grams of protein per 100 grams of seeds and nearly 17 grams of omega-three fatty acids per 100 grams of chia seeds.

It also has a high content of different forms of vitamin B, and calcium and irons are also present in high amounts. These seeds are full of nutritional material, thus, they are valued.

Chia seeds help to have a healthy heart, give better bone health, help to have glowing skin, and assist to have proper sleep.

Besides these many benefits of chia seeds, they may cause the above side effects on the body.


You might have heard that overeating healthy food is also harmful to the body, the same is true with chia seeds. 

It’s good to know the safe limits of the consumption of chia seeds per day: it’s approximately a few grams. 

Consume the chia seeds at this limit, or consult a dietitian about it and then it will benefit you and render no harm to your body.