Chia Seeds: A Tiny Seed Packed with Nutritional Benefits

April 14, 2016

Chia seeds are small seeds that come from a flowering plant in the same family as mint. Historically these seeds were a vital piece of nutrition for the Aztecs and Mayans. They were used primarily for their potential to create sustained energy levels. Available either as white or dark brown to black in colour, chia seeds possess a variety of nutritional benefits. Unlike flax seeds, which need to be ground prior to ingesting to obtain its health benefits, chia seeds can be consumed either whole or ground.

This super food possesses a variety of nutritional benefits. Chia seeds are rich in dietary fibre, protein, calcium, magnesium, iron and antioxidants. They are believed to aid with elevated cholesterol, elevated blood pressure, and inflammation. These seeds are also a great source of ALA (alpha-linolenic acid), a plant-based form of omega-3. A study demonstrated that having a high intake of ALA from dietary sources over 6 years appeared to decrease the chances of a first heart attack by upwards of 59% in both men and women.

Not having any taste, chia seeds can be added easily to a variety of foods. Sprinkle on top of yogurt, cereal, and salads, or mix into a smoothie. Here is a simple smoothie recipe with Liv9 organic chia seeds:

 ½ cup spinach, ½ cup kale, 1 banana, 1 sliced apple, 1 cup vanilla almond milk, 2 tbsp. chia seeds. Place all ingredients in blender and mix on high for 1 minute. Enjoy!

 

1. Ascherio A, Rimm EB, Giovannucci EL, et al. Dietary fat and risk of coronary heart disease in men: cohort follow up study in the United States. BMJ 1996;313:84-90.