I’m a total fan of everything nutrition and I have used my foodie, geek side to share creative recipes with others along the way. My nutritional ideas are short and sweet, so you can take a bite and run with it!
As part of my ongoing search to find foods rather than pills to nourish our bodies, I\’m always searching for nutrient dense fuel. Chia seeds have become one of my superfoods.
The Chia Story
These power-packed seeds were originally discovered by the ancient Aztec warriors 3,000 years ago. These warriors prized chia as an endurance food, eating it in bread, and drinking it in water before running long distances. It is said that a single tablespoon sustained the warriors for an entire day.
A member of the mint family, chia is native to Central America and comes from the Salvia Hispanica plant. Because of its high fiber content, chia seeds absorb more than ten times their weight in water, making it an excellent source of hydration. The water loving seeds form a gel that slows down the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream, binds it to toxins in the digestive system, and helps get rid of waste.
Chia is also rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which are known to reduce inflammation and help prevent risk factors associated with chronic ailments like heart disease, cancer, and arthritis. They have high-ORAC antioxidants like quercetin, myrecetin, caffeic acid, and chlorogenic acid, and are rich in calcium, potassium, magnesium, iron, zinc, and trace minerals. Chia seeds are considered a biologically complete protein, making it the perfect survival food.
Whenever anything has been labeled a “superfood,” the “super price” goes with it. These are native seeds to our area, so why do they need to be $17/lb? Because they can be. But I stumbled upon a healthy blogger site and came up with a great, inexpensive source that is now my personal choice: ChiaSeedsDirect.com. At the time of writing, a 4-pound bag was $24.99 with free shipping.
Here are some ideas on how to consume them.
1 tbsp. chia seeds
2 tbsp. shredded coconut
1 tbsp. raw cacao powder
- Mix the last three ingredients together.
- Peel the banana and roll it in the coconut, chia seeds, and cacao powder mixture.
- Slice into rounds and enjoy.
12 fresh mint leaves
½ lime unpeeled, cut into 3 wedges
1 tsp. of agave (or stevia to taste)
1 tbsp. chia seeds
8 oz. seltzer or natural sparkling water
- In a large glass, muddle mint leaves together and squeeze lime wedges.
- Add agave, chia, seltzer, and stir.
- Chill in the fridge for 10 minutes to allow chia seeds to gel.
- Stir the mixture.
- Garnish with lime and mint, and serve.
This makes an excellent recovery drink after a hot weather bike ride. It\’s hydrating, cooling, and refreshing.
I always tell my kids, just try them and if you like them, then you\’re one step closer to eating healthier.
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