Recipes with Chia Seeds
Chia are great in smoothies, cereal, yogurt or salads. They can be used as an egg replacer in baked goods.
Nutritional Information for Chia Seeds
Chia are known as a very rich source of the essential omega-3, ALA. Men over 19 need 1.6g/day and women 1.1g/day. Chia offers 1.9g of ALA in just 1 tbsp and ALA is considered essential as the body can't produce it like the other omega-3s, it has to be eaten.
Omega-3s are an essential part of every cell's lining. Studies have correlated their consumption with decreases in heart disease, inflammation and certain types of cancers.
Chia seeds are a great source of fibre which helps with healthy digestion and bowel movements.
Because chia are so rich in antioxidants, and don't have to be ground for their rich oils, they have an extremely long and stable shelf life.
When chia is left in water it creates a gel-like substance that, during digestion, slows down the release of sugars assisting in steadying blood sugar levels.
One oz (2 tbsp) of chia offers 9g of fat, 4g of protein, 11g of fibre and 12g of carbohydrate.
General & Historical Information About Chia Seeds
Chia seeds are originally from Latin America and belong to the mint family. They are tiny little ovals that will become gelatinous when put in water. Chia means strength in the Mayan language.
It has been a major food source for over 5000 years! Aztecs used it as food, for ceremonies, medicinally, in beverages and it was ground into flour or pressed for oil. After the Spanish arrived, it was virtually decimated as it was so closely tied to the Aztec's religion. For the past 500 years it only survived in Mexico in remote areas.
Chia seeds became even more popular after the release of the book Born to Run as the author speaks of Tarahumara using the drink when they go on multi-day runs - providing them enough sustenance for the duration.
Albala, Ken. Nuts a Global History. London: Reaktion Books, 2014. Print
Haas, Dr. Elson and Dr. Buck Levin. Staying Healthy with Nutrition.New York: Ten Speed Press, 2006. Print
Dietitians of Canada. "Food Sources of Omega 3 Fats". http://www.dietitians.ca/Your-Health/Nutrition-A-Z/Fat/Food-Sources-of-Omega-3-Fats.aspx
"History of Chia". http://www.chiaseeds.net.au/pages.php?pageid=10
Pitchford, Paul. Healing with Whole Foods. Berkeley: North Atlantic Books, 2002. Print
Tadayyon, Dr. Bahram. The Miracle of Nuts, Seeds and Grains. Xlibris, 2013. Print
Weil, Dr. Andrew "What is Chia" http://www.drweil.com/drw/u/QAA365093/Chia-for-Health.html
WHFoods. "Visitor Questions." http://whfoods.org/genpage.php?tname=answeredquestion&dbid=135&utm_source=rss_reader&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=rss_feed