Rediscovering the treasured chia seeds

Rediscovering the treasured chia seeds

Chia seeds commonly known as Chia, is a species of flowering plant in the mint family and a native to central and southern Mexico and Guatemala. They were cultivated by the Aztec in pre-Columbian times and revered for their energy boosting properties.

Chia seeds are being rediscovered and making a big entrance in the health world.

Take a look at the nutritional profile of the treasured Chia Seeds:

1 tbsp (12 g) serving of chia seeds contains:

Calories: 65

Protein: 2.5 grams

Fat: 5 grams

Carbohydrates: 7.5 grams

Fiber: 2 grams

Chia seeds also provide:

8 percent of the daily requirement for iron, calcium, phosphorus and thiamin.

5 percent of the daily requirement for zinc and vitamin B6.

They also contain vitamin C, magnesium, niacin, folate and riboflavin.

Comparable nutritional facts:

2 tbsp serving of chia seeds contain:

Five times the omega-3 content of a 1/4-cup serving of walnuts

Twice the iron and magnesium of a cup of spinach

As much calcium as a half-cup of milk

As much potassium as a third of a banana

More than twice the fiber of a cup of oatmeal

THE HEALTH BENEFITS OF CHIA SEEDS:

Anti-inflammatory:

The high concentration of omega-3 and omega-6 content in chia seeds helps reduce inflammation. Omega-3’s are well known for their antioxidant effects.

Aid with appetite control:

The essential fatty acids contained in Chia seeds help boost the metabolism.

Chia seeds swell an form a gel. They are like bulk food when in the stomach, which causes a feeling of fullness.

Blood sugar management & diabetes:

Chia seeds slow down the rate at which complex carbohydrates are digested in the body. The soluble fiber stabilizes blood glucose levels, this results i sustained energy.

A study from the Nutritional Science Research Institute shows that chia seeds control blood sugar and may prevent diabetes. The study shows that chia seeds prevent spikes in blood sugar, and rather controls blood sugar to rise slowly.

Cancer fighters:

Chia seeds are packed with antioxidants containing even more antioxidants than fresh blueberries. These antioxidants may help destroy cancer cells and repair damaged DNA. They destroy free radicals and reduce oxidative stress. They may help with common cancer such as prostate and breast cancers.

Energy boosters:

Chia seeds provide a boost in energy and strength. Native Americans tribes such as Aztecs and Mayans used the seeds when they needed to fight in battle or run fast. A study from the Journal of Strength and Conditioning showed that chia seeds had similar effects to Gatorade in athletes.

Heart health:

Chia seeds help fight and prevent heart disease as outlined by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. They help will high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and reduce plaque in arteries.

Lowers cholesterol:

Chia seeds are an excellent source of dietary fiber, which helps reduce LDL cholesterol.

TIP: Add 2 Tbsp to your favorite smoothie or juice recipe.

Make sure you soak the seeds in water for 10 minutes and stir to let a gel form.

Chia seeds are very dehydrating and must be eaten soaked or with a drink.

We recommend Living Tree Community Foods as a good source for organic chia seeds.

Note: None of the information in our website is intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any illness or disease. The content on our website is for educational purposes only.

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For a coconut banana chia smoothie recipe.

For a cholesterol lowering orange chia smoothie recipe.

For a chia and berries superstar weight loss smoothie recipe.

For anti-inflammatory chia seed milk recipe.

For raw strawberry jam recipe with chia.

REFERENCES:

1.  “Heart Disease Risk Factors.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 26 Oct. 2009. Web. 03 June 2013.

2.  “Chia Research- Nutritional Science Research Institute.” Chia Research- Nutritional Science Research Institute. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 June 2013.

3. “Omega 3 Chia Seed Loading as a Means of Carbohydrate Loading.” National Center for Biotechnology Information. U.S. National Library of Medicine, n.d. Web. 03 June 2013.

 4. Nutrient Facts: Chia Seed Nutrition Facts.

 

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