Seeds (chia, flax, pumpkin)

Seeds, such as chia, flax, and pumpkin, are nutrient-dense foods that can provide numerous health benefits for cyclists. They are rich in healthy fats, protein, fiber, and various micronutrients that support overall well-being and performance.

Seeds are the small, edible reproductive units produced by plants. They are often high in fat, protein, and fiber, and are known for their concentr ated nutrient content.


List of seed variants:
  • Chia seeds
  • Flax seeds
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Hemp seeds
  • Sesame seeds
  • Poppy seeds
  • Quinoa (technically a pseudocereal, but often considered a seed)
  • Amaranth (also a pseudocereal)
  • Buckwheat (another pseudocereal)
Benefits for the cyclist:
  • Excellent source of healthy fats, particularly omega-3 fatty acids (in chia and flax seeds)
  • Provide plant-based protein for muscle recovery and repair
  • High in fiber, which promotes satiety, supports digestive health, and helps stabilize blood sugar
  • Rich in vitamins and minerals, such as magnesium, zinc, iron, and calcium
  • Contain antioxidants that can help reduce inflammation and oxidative stress
  • Versatile ingredients that can be easily incorporated into various meals and snacks
Energy value:

A 1-ounce (28g) serving of seeds typically contains 130-180 kcal, with 5-9g of protein, 3-10g of carbohydrates, and 9-14g of fat.

When to eat:
  • Before the ride: Consuming seeds 1-2 hours before a ride as part of a balanced meal can provide sustained energy and support endurance.
  • During the ride: Certain seeds, like chia or flax, can be added to water or sports drinks to create a gel-like consistency that can provide energy and hydration during longer rides.
  • After the ride: Eating seeds within 30-60 minutes after a ride can aid in muscle recovery and repair, especially when paired with a carbohydrate source.
  • As a snack: Seeds can be a nutrient-dense and satiating snack option between meals.
Other tips:
  • Grind flax seeds before consumption to improve nutrient absorption.
  • Soak chia seeds in liquid to create a gel-like consistency that can be added to smoothies, oatmeal, or yogurt.
  • Sprinkle seeds on top of salads, stir-fries, or grain bowls for added crunch and nutrients.
  • Experiment with different types of seeds to find your preferred flavors and textures.
  • Be mindful of portion sizes, as seeds are calorie-dense.

Seeds are a nutrient-dense and versatile food that can support a cyclist's energy needs, muscle recovery, and overall health. By incorporating seeds into a balanced diet, timing their intake appropriately, and pairing them with other nutrient-rich foods, cyclists can benefit from their healthy fats, plant-based protein, fiber, and various micronutrients. As with any food, it's important to consider individual dietary needs and preferences when including seeds in a meal plan.