Beauty products made using chia seeds could soon be finding their way into your bathroom. A team of scientists in the US has developed a new technology that could extend their usage to medicine capsules and beauty products designed to slow the signs of aging.
Surely everyone has heard of chia seeds? For now, they’re mainly a tasty addition to yogurts, chocolate desserts, power bowls and even salads. Chia seeds are known for their many benefits, whether for the heart, sleep or digestion. But they could, in a new form, soon also help tackle the signs of aging, becoming a major anti-aging ally in the beauty world.
Researchers at Purdue University in the US have developed and patented a new method for separating chia seeds from mucilage, which, the scientists explain, is a thick and gluey substance that surrounds the seeds and can make processing them for food or pharmaceutical applications more difficult — even virtually impossible. The technique yields a protein-rich chia seed flour promising improved bioactivity and functionality compared to conventional methods.
As a result, this technology could allow for new uses of chia seeds, which are native to Mexico, including use in the cosmetics industry.
“We are excited about our extraction method because it opens up so many new possibilities for using chia seeds. Our process uses temperature, ultrasonication, and vacuum-assisted filtration to offer improved efficiency to save both time and money for companies processing chia seeds for nutritional, pharmaceutical, anti-aging or other applications,” explains Uriel Urbizo, a PhD graduate student in Purdue’s College of Agriculture involved in the innovation team.
The scientists have tested this new method for other potential applications, such as using the mucilage and peptides to develop films that can be used in medicine capsules and anti-aging products, respectively.