Gone are the days of chia seeds being known only for their ability to create chia pets! This seed is an all-around super food with star nutrients being fiber, omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, magnesium, & iron. They also contain a host of powerful antioxidants, including caffeic acid, chlorogenic acid, and quercetin. Chia’s fiber content really is something to marvel.
Chia seed has more fiber per 100 grams than barley, wheat, oats, corn, and rice.
The soluble fiber present in chia seeds creates a gel in the stomach when exposed to carbohydrates thereby slowing down the digestive process of carbohydrates and reducing the spike in blood sugar after a meal. Chia seeds are also very high in protein and antioxidants. This is especially beneficial for diabetics.
Chia seeds have become exceedingly popular amongst the healthy crowds over the years. It is an excellent appetite suppressant because of its high amounts of fiber and protein. Chia seed can sustain you for hours, which is why it was used by the ancient Aztecs to sustain warriors during battle. In fact, 1 Tbsp of chia seed would sustain Aztec warriors for 24 hours during battle! In this day and age when food variety is certainly not a problem, it is still important to maintain a balanced diet. Chia can be incorporated into your nutritional plan as a topping on oatmeal, an addition to smoothies, and in baked goods. But my favorite use of chia is as a healthy a jam. Chia seed contains about 5% soluble fiber. It soaks up lots of water and appears as clear mucilage (that means gel). Imagine that beautiful gel coating and soothing your intestines. Glorious!
Here’s a quick recipe for Chia Jam:
- 2 Tbsp chia seeds (black or white)
- 1/4 cup water
- Stevia to taste
- In a medium bowl combine chia seeds, stevia, and water.
- Let chill for 30 minutes. During this time the chia will absorb all of the liquid and gel.
- Serve cold on toast or on its own.