Chia was used by the Aztecs as their main energy source. Salvia hispanica, commonly known as chia, is a species of flowering plant in the mint family, Lamiaceae, native to central and southern Mexico and Guatemala. It was widely cultivated since pre-Columbian times, but was almost forgotten over time. Native Americans in the south also used it as a way to sustain themselves in war times. In recent years, chia has made a strong comeback as we have discovered its fantastic qualities. It has been said to be one of the super foods of all times because of it’s countless health benefits, let’s take a look. One serving of chia seed contains:
- 27 vitamins, minerals, fatty acids and amino acids
- 9% of our daily recommended intake of protein
- 100% more Omega 3 fatty acids than salmon
- 41% of our daily recommended intake of fiber
- 600% more calcium than milk
- 32% of our daily recommended intake of magnesium
- 600% more iron than spinach
- 64% more potassium than banana.
After this impressive list of nutrients, chia should be already first in your shopping list. But there is much more to be said about it, let’s look a little deeper into what it can do to our health. Chia seed helps with:
- Energy boost without the withdraw effect afterwards, thanks to the combination of complete protein, vitamins, minerals and blood-sugar balancing gel.
- Weight loss, the gelling action of chia seed keeps you feeling full for longer, and cuts cravings. Helping you loose weight, and build lean muscle.
- Anti-aging properties, because of its high content of antioxidants, more than any other seed.
- Lower cholesterol
- Alkalize your pH
- Stabilize blood sugar levels, preventing diabetes, and energy swings from the sugar fluctuations.
- Improve digestion, and cleanses the digestive track, preventing diverticulitis and diverticulosis.
- Reduce inflammation and speed injury recovery
- Balance electrolyte levels
- Improve hydration: Chia seed absorbs 9 times its volume in water.
- Improve mental sharpness and sleep
- Improve skin health.
Chia seed is tasteless, so it is very easy to combine with virtually any food, without altering its flavor. Mix one part of chia seed with nine parts of water. This will form a gelatinous mixture that you can add to sauces, smoothies, shakes, cereals, etc. Embrace it as part of your healthy alkaline lifestyle.
If you are taking low blood pressure medications, you should be careful when introducing chia seed in your diet, as it may lower your pressure too much. Also people taking blood thinners, or supplements of vitamin B17, or people with allergies should ask their health professional, when adding it to their diet.
Do you have a favorite chia seed recipe? Please share it with us! I have it for breakfast almost every day.