Saturday, June 15, 2019

The How & Why of Chia Seeds

why to add chia seeds to your daily diet and how to do so
Adapted from a Pixabay image
Today I"m going to review how I use chia seeds and why I use these powerhouses of nutrition (a slight hint there) in my daily diet.   First though, what exactly are chia seeds?   They are actually the seeds from the chia plant (Salvia hispanica) which is a plant native to Mexico and Guatemala.   The name chia is in fact the ancient Mayan word for strength and they were a staple food for both the Mayans and Aztecs.

The chia seeds 'strength' comes from it's nutritional contents.   For such a little seed it packs a mighty nutritional punch.  They contain a large amount of fibre, quality protein, omega 3 and several essential minerals and antioxidants.

It certainly seems like something cool to add to your diet right?  The only question now is how.   I brought some chia seeds to use last year, but before I got a chance to use them my husband brought me home a chia pudding to try.   I did NOT like it!   I then left the chia seeds in the cupboard unopened, I'm sure some of you can relate to that happening!

So what changed?   As many of you know beginning January 2018 I embarked on a journey to reset my health, fitness and lose some of my excess weight.   At the beginning of the year I was looking at the chia seeds and thought - I'll pop a teaspoon into my morning protein shake.   This was upped to 2 teaspoons in my shake.

Now to be honest I couldn't tell you if it was helping my health at all, but it certainly wasn't hurting it and you can't really beat good nutrition.

Around this time my daughter was following a fitness guru on Instagram and brought home some chia seeds because she was going to put a tablespoon into a liter of water every day and drink them.  Her face when I opened the cupboard and showed her that I already had chia seeds was priceless (any mom to a teen will appreciate that moment!)

Last month I was on holiday and at the hotel they offered a buffet style breakfast - one of the offerings was a small bircher muesli in the bottom of a shot glass filled with yogurt and topped with chia seeds (about a teaspoon of them).  I had one with my breakfast every day I stayed there and it was delicious - might be time to try chia pudding again!

We are now entering winter here in Australia which means porridge season and this past week I have been adding a couple of teaspoons of chia seeds to my oats and almond milk before cooking it.   It tastes delicious.

If you're baking for a vegan, chia seeds can also be used as an egg substitute (I haven't tried this yet).   You simply add 1 tablespoon of chia seeds to 3 tablespoons of water and leave to sit for 20 minutes.

Now you know both how to use chia seeds in your diet and why to use them - will you be getting some anytime soon?


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8 comments:

  1. The chia seeds do sound healthy and nutritious, Louanne. Thanks for telling me about them.

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  2. This sounds like a wonderful seed! As far as I know, I have never eaten anything with chia seeds, but clearly I need to add them to my own diet. Thanks for the information and for the recommendations on how to add them to a daily diet.

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  3. Like you, I didn’t like the texture of chia pudding but have been looking for other ways to incorporate chia seeds into my meals, especially now that I’m eating a low carb diet, since good sources of natural fiber are hard to find in low carb “real” foods other raspberries (which I love but can only eat in limited amounts on a low carb diet). I want to try adding chia sides to my low carb avocado, coconut milk, cacao, monkfruit and ice cube breakfast shake.

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  4. I have used Chia seeds in some of my baking. They make a really nice difference in muffins and breads. Thanks for the added information about the nutritional values on these little mighty seeds.

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  5. Chia seeds are big in our house. The kids use them as you mentioned in shakes and on salads. The boys are fitness nuts, and like you, I've embarked on a new health routine. Changing my life. Yes to chia seeds!

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  6. I had no idea Chia seeds were that high in nutritional value. I used them once or twice in my Bliss Balls recipe. I'll have to get some more.

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  7. A friend introduced me to these many years ago. I did buy some, but I kept forgetting to use them. They still must be here somewhere, so I didn't buy anymore. Maybe I'll search again. My friend only told me about using them in drinking water. I did do that a couple of times. I was also interested in the idea of using them in pudding instead of tapioca. Thanks for the reminder.

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  8. Wow! I didn't know you could use Chia seeds as an egg substitute. I have used them in my blended green smoothies. Thanks for teaching me new ways to incorporate these seeds into my meals.

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