So what is a chia seed you ask? Originally from Mexico and Guatemala, this tiny seed has many proven health benefits. It has a reputation of being a superfood and can be added to a smoothie or put on a salad. They can be added to cereal, sauces, rice dishes or blended drinks. About 1 millimeter in diameter the seeds are oval and gray with black and white spots. They are from the flowering mint family plant called Salvia hispanica. These seeds have about 140 calories per two tablespoons and a great amount of protein, fiber and omega-3 fatty acids.
Chia seeds are harvested from the slightly dried flower head of the purple chia flower.
Benefits of Chia Seeds
Rich in antioxidants, very few calories, lots of fiber, high in quality protein, high in omega-3 fatty acids, high in calcium, can reduce blood sugar levels, may reduce chronic inflammation and easy to consume.
Rich in Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 fatty acids are important for brain health. And a single one ounce serving of chia seeds contain 5 grams of omega-3’s. Omega-3 fatty acids are helpful to raise HDL cholesterol which is the good cholesterol that protects against stroke and heart attack.
Reduces Chronic Inflammation
Some studies have shown that chia seeds could reduce inflammation. Inflammation is your body’s normal response to infection or injury. Red and swollen skin is a typical example. Although inflammation helps your body heal and fight off bacteria, viruses and other infectious agents, it can sometimes cause harm. This applies to chronic inflammation which is associated to cancer and heart disease. Being rich in antioxidants chia seeds are compounds that provide protection from oxidative stress and reduce the risk of chronic disease.
Simple chia seed pudding recipe
A simple 3 ingredient chia seed pudding consists of 2 tablespoons of chia seeds, 1/2 cup almond milk and 1 teaspoon honey. Mix well, wait for pudding to settle then mix again. Be sure there are no clumps then place in the refrigerator for 2 hours. Add fruit, cinnamon or vanilla for added flavor. If you use a clear glass or mason jar then you can see the mixture inside to be sure there are no clumps. Enjoy!
Nutritional Facts of Chia Seeds Daily Value*
- Amount Per 1 oz 28.4 g
- Calories 138%
- Total Fat 9g13% Saturated fat 0.9g 4% Polyunsaturated fat 7g Monounsaturated fat 0.7g Trans fat 0g
- Cholesterol 0 mg 0%
- Sodium 5 mg 0%
- Potassium 115 mg 3%
- Total Carbohydrate 12g 4%
- Dietary fiber 10g 40%
- Protein 4.7g 9%
- No sugar
- Gluten free
- Calcium 17%
- Iron 12%
- Magnesium 23%
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
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What is a Chia Seed?
I hope this information helps you to understand what is a chia seed. Growing in popularity and more readily available in markets such as Thrive Market makes them a perfect choice for better health. Chia seeds have a long shelf life and should be stored in a cool dry place. Be sure they are not brown when you consume them as this means they are not mature yet. Brown seeds will not provide the proper nutritional value and can be bitter in taste. Due to its high fiber be cautious that you don’t consume too much. Too much could cause discomfort like bloating, constipation or intestinal gas. The recommended dosage is 1.5 tablespoons taken twice per day. Try using chia seeds to replace an egg in vegan cooking.
If you want to try chia seeds, check out Thrive markets selection of organic chia seeds. Click here.
Please comment and share below if you like chia seeds or if you have any recipes. Chia seeds are beneficial for anybody that is on the Keto Diet. Learn more here in my article, How Healthy is the Keto Diet.
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