Though they are an ancient superfood, it seems like chia seeds are finally getting some attention! High in protein, fiber, calcium, antioxidants, and omega-3s — what's not to love about chia? Just one ounce (about two tablespoons) of chia seeds provides 11 grams of fiber, four grams of protein, 177 milligrams of calcium, and 4.9 grams of omega-3 fatty acids. Read on to learn ways to add more chia seeds to your life.
If you're all caught up on your healthy food trends, you're most likely aware of the chia seed revolution. The first question most people have is if the chia seeds we're supposed to eat are the same seeds we massaged into the heads of those kitschy Chia Pets. The answer? An enthusiastic "yes!" But the ingestion of these tiny black and white seeds predates the '80s Chia Pet craze; their benefits can be traced all the way back to Aztec and Mayan times. In fact, "chia" is actually the Mayan word for strength. Chock-full of omega-3s and fiber, these superfood seeds were used by ancient cultures to boost energy. Messengers from these civilizations sometimes carried a small pouch of chia seeds around with them, just to provide them with the extra push they needed during a strenuous day.
While chia seeds is actually part of the mint family, their flavor is very subtle. They can be seamlessly added into just about any recipe whether it's savory or sweet. I'm curious about your thoughts on these little guys. Are you seeing chia seeds readily available in your neighborhood? Have you tried incorporating them into recipes for a little extra crunch? Share below!
Source: Flickr User little blue hen
A close relative to our sprouting terracotta friend, the Chia Pet figurine, chia seeds are a dynamic ancient superfood. Once a staple food for the Mayans, Aztec warriors, and Incas, the term "chia" actually translates to "strength" in the language of the Mayans. Legend has it that one tablespoon of tiny chia seeds was able to sustain them throughout their long, tiresome days.
- What have they done for me lately? Chia seeds are high in protein, fiber, calcium, antioxidants, and omega-3s. In fact, for women, the RDI of omega-3s is 1.1 grams (1,100 mg) a day, so if you're looking for a new source that's vegan, gluten free, and easy to consume, you'll want to pick up some chia seeds. One ounce of chia seeds (about two tablespoons) contains just 137 calories, one gram of saturated fat, 11 grams of fiber, four grams of protein, 177 milligrams of calcium, and 4.9 grams of omega-3 fatty acids.
This is an incredibly rich and delicious tasting pudding that's actually totally healthy. The texture is reminiscent of chocolate mousse, but it still manages to pack a ton of healthy fats and protein!
See the recipe when you read more
It's easy to gulp down a cup full of fresh fruits blended with juice and yogurt. Also easy? Adding a few powerful ingredients to make it just as tasty (if not more) and much healthier. Add some nutritional oomph to your sumptuous smoothies with these five ingredients.
Ch-ch-ch-chia! Most people know about chia because of the famous shrubby pets that seemed to invade every commercial break during the '90s. The same seeds that made those houseplants so familiar are also quite good for the body. So forget those porous clay pots and learn why you should be ingesting them and how to get them in your diet.
To see why you need to learn to love chia seeds, read more
Since fish, a huge source of omega-3s, is off limits for vegetarians, they have to pay special attention to their diets in order to reach their daily quota. It's recommended to consume 1.1 grams of the heart-healthy fat daily. If you don't, symptoms like fatigue, poor memory, weakened immune system, dry skin, heart problems, and depression could plague you. For all you out there eating a plant-based diet, here are some animal-free sources of omega-3s.
- One tablespoon flaxseed oil: 7 grams
- One tablespoon chia seeds: 2.5 grams
- One tablespoon flaxseeds: 2.3 grams
- One tablespoon flaxmeal: 1.6 grams
- One tablespoon canola oil: 0.8 grams
To see the other five sources, keep reading.
Chia seeds are in fact used to grow Chia pets, but these little brown seeds are also an excellent source of omega-3s. If you're worried about getting enough of this valuable nutrient, then check out this new cereal called Chia Goodness.
This gluten-free cereal contains more calcium than a glass of milk, more omega-3s than flaxseeds, and is a great source of fiber. It sounds healthy, but if you're curious to know how it tastes then read more
If the word "chia" creates mental image of a clay creature sprouting hair, you are not mistaken. I am talking about the same kinds of seeds, because aside from making the fuzz on countless Chia Pets, these seeds are also an excellent source of omega-3s! Who knew?
For women, the RDI of omega-3s is 1.1 grams (1,100 mg) a day, so if you're looking for a new source that's vegan, gluten free, and easy to consume, you'll want to pick up some chia seeds. To find out how many omega-3s are found in chia seeds then click here