A few months ago, I was not familiar with this tiny super food, but thanks to a little research and incentive, I’m hooked.
The internet suggests chia seeds were a staple power food in Mayan, Inca, and Aztec diets.
Quote from Mountain Rose Herbs: chia seeds contain, “Essential fatty acids alpha-linolenic and linoleic acid, mucin, strontium, 30% protein, Vitamins A, B, E, and D, and minerals including calcium, phosphorus, potassium, sulphur, iron, iodine, copper, zinc, sodium, magnesium, manganese, niacin, thiamine, silicon, and anti-oxidants.”
“They are currently being used for their nutritional and medicinal properties, endurance for athletes, for suppressing the appetite, weight loss, leveling blood sugar, and for aiding intestinal regularity. Chia seeds readily dissolve into the water, creating a substance that looks like gelatin. This gel-forming action is due to the soluble fiber in the Chia seed. Researchers believe that this same gel-forming phenomenon takes place in the stomach when Chia seed is consumed, thus creating a physical barrier between carbohydrates and digestive enzymes and slowing the conversion of carbohydrates into sugar. Slowing the conversion of carbohydrates into sugar helps with endurance and metabolic rates, which is beneficial for athletes and others”.
Chia seeds absorb much more liquid than their size or weight suggests, which makes it great for preventing dehydration.
Do your own research. There’s plenty to learn about this yummy power food.
Chia is great tossed in smoothies and shakes. I usually let them soften and expand in the liquid for a few minutes. I personally don’t like having hard seeds in my drinks.
You can eat them plain if you like, but I like them best soaked. The soluble fiber in chia seeds makes it perfect for clean puddings. If you prefer a thicker consistency, just give it more time to gel or up the chia seeds to liquid ratio.
I’ve refrigerated a recipe in a jar all night so an early power breakfast would be ready for my husband when he woke up. He just added frozen blueberries and ate it with granola. It could be yummy in yogurts and oatmeal too. Plus, there’s a whole non-breakfast, chia seed world I haven’t explored yet.
The possibilities are endless. It’s so fun throwing in a tablespoon or two into drinks, knowing I just upped the nutritional value of my diet. That alone is happiness. 🙂
Here’s a great paleo, chia seed pudding recipe. I prefer the pure maple syrup taste over honey for sweetener, but you can adjust recipes to your preference. It would work with other milk forms too, depending on your diet.