Chia seeds have become very popular in the last few years; within the last 18 months they’ve begun to show up on our grocery shelves. You find them in bags, but also in granola bars, chips, cereals and even cookies! And yes, these are the same seeds that we got to know as “Chia Pets.”
But what are they? And are they really good for you?
Chia, Salvia hispanica, is a species of flowering plant in the mint family. It is grown commercially for its seeds. These little guys are loaded with good fats: 55% Omega 3, 18% Omega 6, 6% Omega 9 and 10% saturated fat. Plus they are high in fiber and protein as well! And, they also have up to 18% of recommended daily intake of Calcium along with phosphorus and manganese.
Not only do they power us up, their nutrients help reduce inflammation, enhance cognitive performance, reduce high cholesterol, and their fiber content helps regulate bowel function.
Good News. Chia seeds are fun to eat! They can be consumed raw or be added to a liquid substance such as smoothies. When wet, they turn into a gelatin form (pudding!). This gelling action coupled with their fiber and protein content, cause a satiating effect – a bonus for those on a weight management plan.
I think chia seeds are here to stay! They are easy to consume, have almost no taste and are pretty shelf stable. For these reasons, they are more commonly consumed – even taken the place of flax seeds.
Have I convinced you yet to try them? Great! Check out a recipe that will get you started on getting to know these powerful little seeds. PS- they are good for kids and adults!
Tropical Green Smoothie: http://www.kidkritics.com/recipes/Tropical-Green-Smoothie/404
For the health of your family,