Chia is commonly known as the quirky sprout of Chia Pet fame, but Chia (specifically the seed) is reclaiming its centuries-old status as a healthful food. Native to Central and South America and the south-western U.S., this edible seed comes from the desert plant, salvia hispanica, a member of the mint family. It’s rich history dates back 3,000 years when it became known as the “running food” by the Aztecs and Mayans, who hailed its many uses as food, medicine and religious offering. Chia belongs to the salvia family, with the name coming from the Latin ‘salare’ which means to save, referring to its curative properties.

Organic Chia Seeds: The Next Super Food for Virility

Get yourself some Organic Chia Seeds – it’s health and virility in the form of a seed – and start incorporating this amazing ‘super food’ into your diet with the following suggestions…

Chia, as a food ingredient, is a dieters dream. Chia seeds are very tasty, with a nutty flavor, when sprinkled over meals. There are limitless ways to incorporate the Chia seed into your diet. Chia must be prepared with pure water before using recipes. The seed will absorb 9 times it’s weight in water in less than 10 minutes and is very simple to prepare.

The organic chia seed has a mild, nut like flavor that mixes well with a variety of foods and beverages. Mix chia with lemon or lime juice and a little sugar to make the Mexican drink, Chia Fresco. Whole seeds enhance cereals, salads or yogurts, while ground seeds add a healthy boost to baked goods, soups and salsas.

Chia gel (chia mixed in water) can be used as an oil or fat substitute in sauces and baked goods. Look for chia seeds to become more readily available in health stores and online. At about 10.00 dollars a pound, with a shelf life of several years, the Chia Pet may take on a whole new meaning.

Salmon, acai berries, spinach and blueberries all fall are all commonly known “super foods” but soon chia seed may top the list. Super foods are foods that are loaded with phytonutrients, including antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids and essential vitamins and minerals. Also, any super food worth its weight should be a good source of protein, healthy fats or fiber.

Chia Nutrition

The chia seed makes up for its diminutive stature with sizeable nutrition. No bigger than a poppy seed, chia supplies a large amount of omega-3s and protein, compared with other grains. When you feed chickens and cattle chia, their meat is higher in omega-3s (as are the chicken eggs). The chia seed is also very high in antioxidants and delivers a hefty portion of important minerals like calcium, phosphorus and manganese.

Including Chia in your diet can be a healthy habit. Chia is 16 percent protein, 31 percent fat and 44 percent carbohydrate. The latter is 38 percent fiber (both soluble and insoluble), and most of the fat content is the heart healthy essential omega 3 fatty acid. And as a complete vegetable protein with nine essential amino acids, you’ve got enough protein for a health boosting, low cholesterol snack or meal.

Fiber. Two tablespoons of chia packs over 42.5 percent of your daily recommended fiber intake and three to four times what you’ll find in a competing dietary supplement. Considering that most Americans get less that half of their recommended fiber each day, chia’s a fast and convenient way to boost your fiber intake and minimize digestive problems.

With enough protein, healthy fats and fiber content, chia is a convenient way to supplement the average diet. Digestive Science Organic Chia Seed is an unrivalled source of all chia’s nutrients. In fact, it’s packed with enough nutrients to have extensive and far reaching health benefits for those from all walks of life and degrees of health. Benefits include:

  • more energy
  • better digestion
  • reduced food cravings
  • increased lean muscle mass
  • better sleep
  • healthier skin

Organic Chia Seeds and Diabetes

Organic chia seeds A study published in an issue of Diabetes Care found that chia supplementation compared with wheat bran supplementation for 12 weeks resulted in the reduction of cardiovascular risk factors in people with type 2 diabetes.

Chia seed creates a physical barrier between carbohydrates and the digestive enzymes that break them down, thus slowing the conversion of carbohydrates into sugar. The human body is able to digest chia seed easily. As the seeds are able to absorb more than 7 times their weight in water, and form a thick gel, the result is a slow release of carbohydrates facilitating an equally slow conversion of carbohydrates into glucose (blood sugar) for energy.

Nutrient Content of Chia Seeds

Per 1 tablespoon dried seeds, 10 grams:

  • Calories: 49
  • Protein: 1 gram
  • Carbohydrates: 4 grams
  • Fat: 3 grams
  • Omega-3 fatty acids: 1755 milligrams
  • Dietary fiber: 4 grams
  • Calcium: 63 milligrams
  • Phosphorus: 95 milligrams
  • Manganese: 0.2 milligrams

Chia History

An ancient recipe. Pinole, a type of gruel, was one of many dishes the Aztecs made with chia. To prepare it, the seeds were roasted, milled into flour, and then combined with corn flour and water. This porridge was eaten as-is, or shaped into cakes and cooked over an open fire.

Recipe: Berry and Chia Seed Yogurt

Satisfying, nutritious, and delicious, this tasty yogurt will ward off your hunger for hours!

  • 8 ounces Greek yogurt
  • 1/4 cup fresh blueberries
  • 1/2 cup sliced fresh strawberries
  • 2 teaspoons chia seeds
  • 1 tablespoon chopped walnuts

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and enjoy! Makes 1 serving.

Chia Super Smoothie

Green smoothies are a great way to get a bold dose of veggies, fiber, and nutrients in a healthy, convenient, low-calorie way. Here, a tablespoon of chia seed creates an even more super-charged drink. This treat is best made in a high-powered blender. A Blendtec or Vitamix brand power blender is ideal.

  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1-1/2 cups pear juice, coconut water, water, or a mixture
  • 3 romaine lettuce or kale leaves
  • 1 small cucumber, peeled
    Parsley sprigs

Add all ingredients to a blender and liquefy using the most powerful setting. Blend until smooth. Drink immediately. Makes 1 serving.

Use Digestive Science Organic Chia Seed – it’s health and virility in the form of a seed.

Chia Gel

Making Chia Gel (9 to 1 ratio): Put water in a sealable plastic container and slowly pour seed into water while briskly mixing with a wire whisk. This process will avoid any clumping of the seed. Wait a couple of minutes, whisk again and let stand for 5 to 10 minutes. Whisk again before using or storing in refrigerator (Gel will keep up to 2 weeks). You can add this mix to jams, jellies, hot or cold cereals, yogurts, mustard, energy bars, snacks, catsup, tarter sauce, BBQ sauce, etc.

Use chia as a fat replacer, for energy and endurance, or for added great taste. Substitute the oil in your breads with Chia gel. Top your favorite bread dough before baking with Chia gel for added shelf life. For topping on baked goods, breads, cookies, piecrust, etc., reduce the water ratio to 8 parts water to 1 part Chia seed.

Therapeutic Chia Tea

Chia leaves (fresh or dried) steeped in boiling water, make a therapeutic chia tea. Use the tea as a blood cleanser and tonic, for fevers, pain relief, arthritis, respiratory problems, mouth ulcers, diabetes, diarrhea, gargle for inflamed throats, to reduce blood pressure, cholesterol and triglyceride levels and to strengthen the nervous system. Try the tea sweetened with honey and a few drops of lemon juice added.

Other Chia Beverages

Try chia as a refreshing breakfast drink. Mix 1 teaspoon seeds (rich in soluble fiber), in a glass of orange juice and let the seed soak for 10 minutes, before drinking. The drink will give a feeling of satisfaction and fullness for a number of hours.

For a refreshing chia beverage, soak 1 teaspoon chia seed in 1 cup of hot water and 1/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar, 1 teaspoon honey and a pinch of cinnamon powder.

Chia Lemonade: Soak 2 teaspoons chia seed for 1 hour in 3/4 glass apple juice, then add 2 teaspoons lemon juice and crushed ice.

Chia Honey Chews

Melt 1/2 cup butter, 3/4 cup honey and simmer 5 minutes. Take off heat, add 1/4 cup chia seed, soaked in 1/4 cup water 12 hours, 1/2 cup flax seeds and 1/2 cup sunflower seeds, soaked 12 to 24 hours and drained; add 4 cups puffed millet, or rice bubbles or cornflakes, 1/2 cup coconut; mix well, press into a tin. This mixture needs to be fairly dry, so that it can be pressed down, firmly, in the tin, to set. If too moist, add a little more of the millet, rice or cornflakes. Cool. Refrigerate 1 day to let the flavors blend, cut into squares. Sesame seeds could be substituted for chia.

Chia is ideal for anyone who wishes to achieve maximum health. And it has the convenience of a seed that is easily integrated in any diet. Everyone can eat chia. And frankly, everyone should.

Fast Chia Breakfasts

Chia is so easy to use that there is no need to whip up a special recipe to enjoy it. Simply add it to your current favorite breakfast foods. Following are some ideas.

  • Sprinkle up to 1 tablespoon of chia, depending on your taste, over cold cereal or a bowl of oatmeal.
  • Layer fruit, yogurt, and a sprinkle of chia seeds into a glass for a breakfast parfait.
  • Add chia to your favorite pancake or waffle recipe (or mix).
  • Sprinkle chia onto waffles before cooking or onto pancakes before turning.
  • Add a dusting of chia seeds to an omelet before turning it out of the pan.
  • Spoon scrambled eggs, salsa, black beans, and chia seeds into a tortilla before rolling to make a healthy breakfast wrap.
 
Source: Fun Facts about Chia Seeds: Milk & Honey Nutrition

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