Add a Boost to Your Diet with the Chia Seed
Posted on Wednesday, July 17th, 2013 at 8:00 am
Remember that catchy theme song from the Chia Pet commercials? “Ch-ch-ch-chia!!” Clay figurines that sprouted the Chia plants for hair or fur were all the rage years ago. Currently, seeds from the same variety of Chia plants are being sold online and in health conscious stores, so consumers can reap the benefits of the nutritious seeds. The Chia Seed delivers the maximum amount of nutrients with the minimum calories. Don’t mistake chia seeds for flax! They both may be super foods and have a similar nutritional value, but they are different.
Chia seeds come from a flowering plant in the mint family that is native to Mexico and Guatemala. It is said to have been an important part of the Aztecs diet. Chia seeds are an unprocessed, whole-grain food that can be absorbed by the body as seeds, unlike flaxseeds. Chia’s positive health effects include boosting energy, stabilizing blood sugar, lowering cholesterol, and aiding digestion.
Scientists say that chia seeds slow down how fast our bodies convert carbohydrates into simple sugars. This indicates that they can control blood sugar. Scientists believe chia seeds may have great benefits for diabetics. Like flax, chia seeds are popular for weight loss. They reduce food cravings by preventing some of the food that you eat from getting absorbed. They can also help your diet by making you feel full. Chia seeds are also the richest plant source of Omega-3! These vital fatty acids protect against inflammation, such as arthritis and heart disease.
Incorporating chia seeds into your daily diet is easy, but it’s recommended that you start out with a small amount and gradually increase to allow your body to get used to it. The mild, nutty flavor of chia seeds makes them easy to add to foods and beverages. They are most often sprinkled on cereal, rice dishes, salads, vegetables, ice cream or yogurt. They can easily be mixed into drinks, smoothies, and baked goods.
When you’re buying chia, buy in bulk! It is a less expensive way to incorporate the seeds into your diet for a long period of time. When buying chia seeds, both the white and black seeds are good choices. Make sure you’re getting the best quality seeds by avoiding red seeds because those seeds are immature.