Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Super Food to the rescue!

Cha cha cha chia!

Remember these?
When you hear the word Chia you probably think of 1980's infomercials and Walgreen's specials.  But today I am going to tell you about a different kind of Chia, Chia seeds.  The amazing, tiny, tasteless seeds that offer amazing health benefits.

Chia Seeds are a super food. They look like this.
The are the edible seeds that comes from the desert plant Salvia hispanica, a member of the mint family that grows abundantly in southern Mexico.  I whole heartily believe in them and add them to my food whenever possible. (Oatmeal is my favorite place to sneak them in. 

Check out these nutritional stats!!

2 Tablespoons for Chia seeds only have about 70 calories, 7 grams of fiber, 
and 5 grams of Omega 3's

Here are some benefits of these super food seeds.

Cardiovascular health: They are know to normalize blood pressure and bad cholesterol as well as promote healthy heart and blood vessels.

Joint function and mobility: Chia seeds are full of calcium.  Six times more calcium than milk and greater amounts of protein that found in soy.  They help keep bones healthy and strong.

Improves Digestion and are a natural detoxification: Chia seeds hold a ton of water (12 x's its weight in water).  Which makes them great for athletes who are loosing large amounts of water due to sweating. Simply take a tablespoon or two a day in your water and they will help your body stay more hydrated.  Because of the high insoluble fiber content in Chia seeds they also reduce digestive transit time and remove toxins as they pass through your system.

Support weight loss:  Chia seeds help keep the blood sugar stable, reducing cravings for high sugar sweets and carbohydrates.  Their fiber content helps you stay full and their neutral flavor makes them an easy addition to practically anything.

Chia is very rich in omega-3 fatty acids, even more so than flax seeds.  Chia seeds do not have to be ground to make their nutrients available to the body. They provide you with an abundance of fiber, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, copper, iron, niacin, and zinc. 

When added to water and allowed to sit for 30 minutes, chia forms a gel. This shows us that this reaction also takes place in the stomach, slowing the process by which digestive enzymes break down carbohydrates and convert them into sugar, helping us stay fuller longer.

So if they are so great how do you use them?
Chia seeds have no taste so they can be used in almost anything.  Add the to smoothies, oatmeal, baked goods, muffins, breads, pancakes.  You can also sprinkle them into your cereal and over yogurt.  You only need 1-2 tablespoons to get so many amazing nutrients, so a bag lasts a long time.  They do not have to be refrigerated and they have a shelf life of 2 years.

Want some?  Here is where to pick some up.
Chia seeds are gaining popularity, especially at health food stores and online.  If you have a Whole Foods or Sprouts close you can pick them up there.  You can also get them online.

Check back tomorrow for some great Chia Seed recipes!


1 comment:

  1. Nice blog. I am a Chia Seeder! I take a tablespoon with my Almond/Coconut milk morning drink. It does my body good!

    Keep up the nice blogging.