Ok, so if you follow these posts, you’ve read about me toting around green juices and coming up with natural replacements for certain desserts out there. Let’s not get too crazy – I’m not going full-on natural (note the butter and crème fraiche in my dish earlier this week…), but I am acknowledging my health a bit more now that I’m in my 30’s and want to take a bit better care (slash vanity wants me to hold back the aging process!). My parents’ obsession with Dr. Oz adds fuel to the fire, and it seems like every week they are sending me tips on what to incorporate into my diet. My mom the other day went OFF about chia seeds, and I won’t say I was skeptical(particularly if you are reading this, mom) but I wanted to dig a bit deeper…
As always, she was right. It’s like beyond a superfood, a super-super-superfood if you will! A member of the mint family that is mainly grown for its seeds, this food has history – native to parts of Mexico and Guatemala, the Mayans and Aztecs used to grow it as a staple, using it to increase their stamina and energy levels, and knew what they were doing. It’s a complete source of protein, has more calcium than skim milk on a per ounce basis, and is the richest plant source of Omega-3 (even higher than salmon!).
Soaking these little guys in water, the seeds swell up and become gelatinous (like basil seeds) actually holding 9 to 12 times their weight in water. What this means is that they help prolong hydration and retain electrolytes in the body. Before I get completely off my soapbox…they also prevent blood sugar spikes, help clean out the intestinal tract (a huge source of fiber) and are very high in antioxidants and other minerals. There, I’m done.
They do have fat, fyi, for all you naysayers, so I’ll just give you that to criticize, but most seeds are rich in oils (think: flax). And they can be eaten a number of different ways – ground into a flour to include in breads or sauces, sprouted like alfalfa, bloomed in water or liquids (think rice pudding-esque) or merely by themselves.
I personally have been adding them to my water with a bit of chlorophyll in the mornings as a pre-workout booster. And I will be including them in next week’s recipe, so I thought I would brief you before you look at the recipe like “what the heck is that.”
Anyway, would love to hear if any of you guys have been eating this stuff…