Chia seeds are high in omega 3 fatty acids, found normally from fish sources. It is both qualitatively and quantitatively high in complete protein, both soluble and insoluble fibre, as well as anti-oxidants, magnesium, calcium, iron and vitamin C.
A study conducted on Salba®, a specific brand of Chia, found that 3.5 oz of Salba® contained as much omega 3 as 28 oz of salmon, as much calcium as 3 cups of milk, and as much iron as 5 cups of raw spinach. Chia is also gluten free, a bonus for those with gluten sensitivities who have a hard time increasing fibre consumption. All that nutrition and it's also low in calories.
Studies have shown its use in the treatment of Type II Diabetes. As a high source of fibre, it regulates blood sugar and insulin release by slowing digestion and therefore preventing the sugar "spikes" that are common after meals. Similarly, chia is said to be complimentary to exercise programs aimed at weight loss, as it keeps individuals feeling satisfied longer and therefore decreases total caloric consumption. It has also been shown to reduce inflammation (It decrease C- reactive protein, a marker of inflammation in our blood.), decrease blood pressure and has blood thinning effects, making it useful in the treatment and prevention of atherosclerosis, stroke and myocardial infarction (heart attack).
Chia can be consumed whole in seed form, ground and added to baking, or sprouted and used in salads and sandwiches. In Mexico, the seeds are soaked until they become gelatinous, and made into a drink called a chia fresco. Be cautious when buying chia that you are buying it from an agriculturally sound company, as to avoid high pesticide consumption.
15g (1 tablespoon), can be added to just about anything! ie. cereal, toast, smoothies, oatmeal, salad dressings, soups, pudding, jam etc etc.....
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