If you immediately think of those little planters when you hear the word chia, that's understandable. Until recently, chia seeds were best known for growing fur on ceramic sheep. If your next question is, "Wait, chia seeds are good for me?", that's understandable as well.
Chia seeds are, in fact, a powerful superfood, the benefits of which have been known to the South/Central American people for centuries, and now the powers of these amazing little seeds is available to you.
So why should you eat chia seeds?
They're high in omega-3 fatty acids: Chia seeds are among the highest non-animal source of heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids, even more so than flax seeds. And unlike flax seeds, chia seeds are very high in antioxidants.
Nutritious, too. They are also extremely high in fiber, protein, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, and other important trace elements.
They help curb appetite: When added to water, they form a "chia gel" that slows down the digestive process, which slows down the absorption of carbohydrates and makes you feel fuller, longer. This is a great boon for those looking to lose weight.
By slowing the rate at which carbohydrates are converted to simple sugars, there is evidence that they may help control blood sugar, which holds potential benefits for diabetics.
There is also evidence that chia gel helps to hydrate the body, and the ancient Aztecs used it to treat joint inflammation and assorted skin ailments.
They taste great! Chia seeds have a nutty flavor that goes well when sprinkled on cereal, yogurt, or oatmeal. Unlike flax seeds, which must be ground to get their full benefit, chia seeds can be eaten raw, ground, or mixed into water. Add lemon or lime and sugar to glass of chia water, you have a popular drink known in central America as a "chia fresca."
Chia also makes a great addition to baked goods such as cookies, bread, muffins and more.
Give chia seeds a try, and we think you'll love the many different uses you can find for the amazing superfood.
- Dave Meddish, Live Superfoods