Ahhh Chia seeds … derived from the desert plant Salvia hispanica these little babes are one of the world’s oldest sources of nutrition. They are chockas with omega-3, fibre and protein, containing all 9 essential amino acids and are perfect for vegetarians and vegans! As if this wasn’t impressive enough Chia seeds are considered a wholefood. This means they are unprocessed and unrefined containing high amounts of nutrients and antioxidants to maintain optimum health.
It’s no surprise really why I would choose to include chia seeds in my diet on a regular basis … but if you need some encouragement … boom, then let me give you the highlight reel.
Chia is a good source of both soluble and insoluble fibre. If you have ever experimented with Chia before, you will have noticed that they absorb the liquid they are placed in, swelling and making a gel-like consistency. This form of soluble fibre is great for managing blood glucose levels, slowing down the conversion of carbohydrates into sugar which helps keep your body rockin’ for longer periods of time – think sustained energy, steady like a choo-choo train.
Insoluble fibre also in chia seeds does not dissolve in water but rather keeps close to its original form throughout its travels in your digestive system. This provided roughage which helps to keep you regular and eliminates toxins from our bodies and our skin assisting us with better absorption of vitamins and minerals.
These two types of fibre combined are fantastic for weightloss as well as regulating our bodies fluid retention, improving overall health and giving us a youthful healthy glow.
Chia seeds are the only plant based protein that offers all 9 essential amino acids making it a ‘complete’ protein, but I may as well be speaking latin if you don’t know what essential amino acids are and what they can do for your body.
Amino acids are described as the building blocks for our bodies and are vital for healthy muscles, skin, hair, nails, bones and blood, all the good stuff! Protein is one of those important substances that our bodies use to make hormones, enzymes and antibodies that help our body to maintain functionality as well as rebuild and regenerate. Protein is also a good source of energy. Combining these benefits make chia a great food to add into your diet pre or post exercise, work it …
Omega-3s are vital for our overall health and well being. They contain a type of Omega-3(ALA) that is particularly good for our heart health by helping to lower our cholesterol levels while maintaining healthy artery functions. This can help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. It also provides anti-inflammatory benefits as well as boosting our brain function and helping to stabilise our overall mood.
Omega-6 which is also found in chia seeds can help provide glowing skin and shiny hair. It doesn’t happen over night, but it will happen.
Chia seeds contain a whole lot of antioxidants (vitamins & minerals) that help protect our bodies cells from oxidizing and aging and help to fight free radicals that can cause a whole list of diseases, assisting in our overall health and well being.
- Calcium – healthy bones and teeth
- Magnesium – Healthy heart rhythm
- Potassium – Regulate blood pressure
- Iron – Transports oxygen through our blood to keep our heart pumpin’ and our muscles movin’.
Try adding chia seeds into your diet at home. Here is one of our favourite chia recipes!
- 1 cup almond milk (we made our own in the Vitamix)
- 2 Tbsp raw honey or maple syrup
- 1 Tbsp coconut oil
- pinch Himalayan rock salt
- 2 good shakes all spice
- 1 Tbsp of raw cacao powder
- 1/2 cup of raw nuts such (almonds/walnuts etc)
- 1 ½ cup soaked chia seeds
- 1/2 cup ground linseeds
- fresh toppings of your choice
- Soak your chia seeds in some water until they form a nice gel. Put 1 ½ cups of your soaked chia seeds in a bowl along with 1/2 cup ground linseeds and mix together.
- Place the almond milk, raw honey or maple syrup, coconut oil, Himalayan sea salt, all spice, cacao powder in the Vitamix 2L wet container and blend until well combined.
- Pour your liquid mixture over you chia and linseed mix and combine really well. Add in your raw nuts and continue to mix.
- Serve in bowls with toppings of your choice! Berries, chopped mango, goji berries with almonds and cacao nibs or with some extra honey! The choice is yours!
You can also stir this mixture over a very low heat on the stove to make a yummy warming breakfast served with your favourite herbal tea.