Have you met the Chia seed?
These little seeds are a powerhouse of vitamins and minerals, plus added fiber and are a great addition to your daily diet.
You can add them to drinks, sprinkle them on salads, use them in baked goods and cooking. I’ve enjoyed their benefits for breakfast, lunch and dinner. They keep me fuller longer, boost my energy and provide much needed nutrients to my diet.
Let me share what I’ve discovered about Chia Seeds…..
Essential Omega-3 and Omega-6 Fatty Acids
An excellent source of Omega-3 fatty acids, Chia seeds are one of the richest plant sources of essential fatty acids.
The omega-3s in chia seeds are great for helping reduce inflammation and high cholesterol, and can greatly enhance ones’ cognitive abilities and performance. In fact, many students add these seeds to teas and water to help them stay focused and alert for their rigorous studies.
They also contain 1620 mg Omega-6 fatty acids per ounce, a wallop of goodness for heart health.
Free radicals are a constant threat to our health and well-being. Chia seeds to the rescue. These little seeds help protect the body from free radicals, cancer, and the negative effects of aging. Due to the volume of antioxidants found in chia seeds, they are incredibly durable and have a long shelf life.
Fiber is great for keeping the bowels regular, lowering cholesterol, reducing inflammation, and keeping you full after a healthy meal. Chia seeds contain a lot of fiber, coming in at about 10 grams in just 2 tablespoons of the seed. Many people find it hard to get the recommended amount of fiber into their daily diet, so chia seeds are an easy way to add this nutrient in healthy doses.
Lots of Minerals
Just two tablespoons of chia seeds include up to 18% of the DRI for calcium, 24% for magnesium, 35% for phosphorous, and up to 50% for manganese. These nutrients are highly important for helping the body fight against hypertension as well as maintain a healthy weight. They are also imperative for a part of DNA synthesis and energy metabolism, ensuring that you have enough energy to get through your day.
Regulating Blood Sugar
Blood sugar is responsible for one’s energy. When blood sugar is low, people can feel lightheaded, sluggish, and very weak. When blood sugar is high, it can lead to serious problems. Chia seeds are handy for regulating the body’s insulin levels by reducing insulin resistance as well as decreasing uncharacteristically high levels of insulin in the blood. This leaves you feeling alert and energized.
Chia seeds can be digested whole unlike other high fiber, high omega-3 seeds such as flaxseed. Flaxseeds and the like must be ground for the individual to experience their full health benefits, but chia seeds can be eaten, drunk, and digested entirely whole and still offer the same amount of nutrients and minerals.
Keeps You Full
One of the main problems of dieting is not feeling full or satiated. Many people cheat on their diets or simply struggle because the foods they’re eating do not contain enough protein or fiber to keep them full and focused and they find themselves feeling hungry and experiencing cravings. Chia seeds offer satiety, which helps you lower food cravings between meals. Due to the “gelling” effect of chia seeds when mixed with water, tea, or other liquids, they help you to feel fuller for longer.
For those who are on a strictly gluten-free diet, there’s no worry of cutting chia seeds and their amazing health benefits out of your routine. Chia seeds have absolutely no grains or gluten, so they can be added to your gluten-free diet without worry.
How have you added Chia seeds to your diet?
I like to add a tablespoon to my water bottle with a little lemon juice to keep my energy levels up during the afternoon.
Try these Chia seed recipes this week:
Blueberry Power Crush Drink
Blend the following ingredients together:
1.5 Tablespoon Chia Seeds (soak in water for about 10 min.)
1/4 cup (33 grams) Fresh or Frozen Blueberries
1 Tablespoon Fresh Lime Juice
1 Teaspoon Honey
12 ounces water (cut amount of water and add ice)
Chill and serve
This little power drink gives you 5 grams of protein and 8 grams of dietary fiber.
Blueberry Chia Pudding
4 Tablespoons Chia Seed
1 Tablespoon Pure Maple Syrup
2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
3/4 cup Vanilla Coconut Milk
Mix all ingredients and chill over night in the refrigerator.
Add fresh blueberries and serve.
Share you favorite Chia seed recipes in our members Facebook group: Healthy Living for Life