Every day, I sprinkle Chia seeds onto my breakfast. I also use them in baking, blended into smoothies and in tasty desserts. These tiny seeds are jam packed with nutritional value and are extremely easy to add to your diet.
Chia, or Salvia hispanica L, is a member of the mint family from Mexico and South America. The Aztecs relied on chia as a staple food and revered it enough to use for religious ceremonies and medicinal purposes.
Rich in omega-3s, high in fibre, protein, magnesium and much more, it is no surprise that chia seeds are known as “the ultimate super food”.
- Chia is gluten free
- It is super high in dietary fibre, making it great for digestion and healing digestion issues.
- It contains 20% Omega 3 ALA, making it a super food for the brain and heart. Chia has eight times more Omega 3 than salmon!
- It boasts 20% protein
- It is high in antioxidants
- Chia contains five times more calcium than milk
- Chia contains seven times more vitamin C than oranges
- It contains three times more iron than spinach
- It contains twice the potassium content of banana
- It is food for healthy skin, hair and nails
- It has a positive impact balancing blood glucose levels
- Chia makes a great egg replacement. Just combine with water to form a gel, and add it to recipes that call for egg.
Here are a few simple ways to use chia seeds:
Blend into smoothies
Add a desert spoon of seeds to any smoothie and as the seeds have a “neutral” taste they mix well with any flavour combination.
Sprinkle onto breakfast cereals and yoghurt
This is my daily favourite and a great way to add nutrients to your first meal of the day.
Add to any baking recipe
Chia seeds can be easily added to any bread or baking recipe including gluten free recipes. Adding chia seeds increases the nutritional density of the recipe whilst reducing the glycemic index due to the gelatinous outer coating found on chia seeds. Check out this Oat, Nut and Chia Seed Energy Bar recipe.
Try sprouting with chia seeds
Perhaps something a little different but you can sprout and add to salads.
Make a ‘Chia Fresca”
Mix whole chia seeds with water or fruit juice to make a ‘Chia Fresca’ which translates as ‘fresh chia’.
A tasty (and healthy) Chia dessert
Per serving infuse ½ cup of almond milk with 1 teaspoon honey, vanilla extract and add 3 teaspoons of chia seeds. Allow the chia seeds to expand, ideally overnight. This pudding is great eaten with fresh seasonal fruit making a tasty, healthy pudding!