When I hear the word Chia, I think of the terra-cotta figurine you purchase at a drug store called a Chia Pet. You may recall when you pour water on the figurine the seeds sprout and you watch it grow. The little Chia seed I’m going to share with you is edible and packed with nutritional value. Chia seeds contain an abundance of nutrients that the human body needs. The seeds are also a catalyst to losing weight.
As far back as 3500 BC, Chia seeds were recognized as a very important food. The seeds were a part of the Native Americans diet in Central America. In the Nahuatl language the word “Chia” means chian, which translates into oily. The Aztecs found the seed to be very important and mixed it with other ingredients. They were resourceful in using the seeds as a base ingredient for cosmetics, body paints, in beverages, medicinally and to treat constipation, sore throats, and wounds. The seed comes from a beautiful plant belonging to the mint family. The scientific name is Salvia hispanica. The plant grows more than 3 feet tall and produces attractive clusters of purple and white flowers. The Chia plants are grown in Southern Mexico and Guatamala.
The Chia seed is rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Chia is also rich in antioxidants, high in fiber and provides an abundance of calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, manganese, copper, iron, molybdenum, niacin, and zinc. Andrew Weil, MD shares on his website that when Chia is added to water and allowed to sit for 30 minutes, chia forms a gel. The research has suggested this reaction also takes place in the stomach, slowing the process by which the digestive enzymes break down carbohydrates and convert them into sugar. Good digestion is a part of weight loss and when our body is metabolizing smoothly and hydrated properly we are able to flush toxins out of our body with ease. The soluble fibers from the seed help keep the colon hydrated and allows for efficient elimination. If one is calcium deficient you may want to eat more cheese and ice cream. By weight, chia has more calcium than whole milk. Although Chia seeds are rich with numerous benefits its not a meal. The seed does not replace your mineral and vitamin needs but rather is an enhancement. Overall the Chia seed minimizes food cravings, improves digestion, gives you energy to be active, balances blood sugar, and helps to improve the omega-3 balance.
The deserts temperatures will soon rise and a Chia Fresca is a hydrating and refreshing drink.
8 ounces of water
1 teaspoon Chia Seeds
Sliced lime, orange, or lemon (your citrus choice)
Let stand for 20-30 minutes
Repeat throughout your day and ENJOY!