Thursday, May 23, 2013

chia seeds make their comeback

So we've all had a Chia Pet at one point or another I'm sure. It may have been my pride and joy back in the day watching those little suckers grow.  Now, I'm happy to say I've been reunited with the infamous seed.  They're now the latest health fad.  


Packed with Omega-3, chia seeds can be a great addition to basically anything and the serving size is only 1 tsp.  They're tasteless so you can sneak them into your pancakes, yogurt, salads, soup- you name it!  My personal favorite is adding it to smoothies or just plain water.  In water, they expand, making you feel fuller for longer.  They can hold nine times their weight in water so they'll help you stay hydrated as well.  With the added fiber, it will prevent you from cravings later and cause you to eat less, especially if you consume it before a meal.  


Here's the low-down on the health benefits: 
  • controls blood sugar levels 
  • provides slow digestion which keeps insulin requirements low (and keeps your fuller for longer) 
  •  reduces plaque buildup associated with heart problems
  • full of vitamins & antioxidants! (calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, phosphorus, copper) 
  • can help aid in sleep because it has the amino acid tryptophan
  • can lower "bad" cholesterol & raise "good cholesterol 
  • can prevent cancer because of the antioxidants


I was a little skeptical at first because in 1 tsp. there's 4.5 grams of fat. Really? They're like miniature seeds.  But I can honestly say eating these seeds made me eat less later because I was so much fuller all day which means in the long-run I probably consumed less fat.  I made a smoothie for breakfast that curbed my appetite for the remainder of the day. That's what I like to hear!  Apparently chia seeds are a testament to the saying "good things come in little packages".



Here's the recipe for the smoothie I made, but don't be afraid to get creative.  You can't really go wrong with a smoothie.  

1 cup Silk Vanilla Soy Milk
1 Banana
1 Cup Frozen Fruit 
1 tsp. Chia Seeds
Then, add water gradually until you get it to the consistency you want

If you want to make this a meal replacement, consider adding protein powder (serving size is usually 3 tsp.) but I wasn't a fan of the powdery taste

Sources: Check out these sites if you want more information or recipe ideas

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