I had the opportunity to meet a beautiful girl named Mia, aka Chia Mia, who’s passion for healthy living will surely rub off on you. She’s loves chia seeds, hence the nickname, and spends her time cooking up delicious treats which are all available on her blog. I’ve always wanted to share with you the power of chia seeds (I think everyone should be eating them daily) so let’s hear it from the Queen of chia seeds, Chia Mia! |
Chia seeds, you may have heard the hype surrounding these little seeds of goodness and for good reason too! They have many health benefits, are extremely versatile and because you only need to consume 2 tablespoons a day to receive their benefits they won’t break the budget.
Chia meaning ‘strength’ in Ancient Mayan come from a plant called Salvia Hispanica (which is related to the mint plant) originally found in South America. Some of the most important facts about chia seeds to know are:
They contain around 30% omega-3 fats, making them a great source of good fats which are essential for glowing skin and hair and healthy brain, cardiovascular and nervous system function. They contain the minerals magnesium, zinc and iron, plus B vitamins which are all important for keeping your energy levels up. 100g of chia seeds contains as much calcium as 500ml of milk, making it great for optimal bone health. They are a great source of plant based protein, with 4 grams of protein per 2 tablespoons of chia seeds. There is 11 grams of fibre per 2 tablespoons of chia seeds. This is great for promoting a healthy digestive system and keeping you regular. They are high in antioxidants, which helps to fight signs of aging. They produce gelatinous fibres. When these fibres enter the digestive tract they bind the toxins produced by the liver. The gelatinous fibres take the toxins through the digestive tract and out of the body. Volia! You have an amazing aid to help your body detoxify. They can absorb up to 9 times their weight in liquid causing them to expand in your stomach which will make you feel fuller for longer.
To get optimal benefits from chia seeds it is suggested to have about 2 tablespoons a day. They have practically no taste so you can add them to pretty much any dish making them extremely easy to incorporate into your daily diet. Some of my tips for adding chia to your diet include:
Making a chia seed pudding for breakfast or dessert, I have shared some recipes below. Add about 2 tablespoons to your smoothies. (see my chai smoothie recipe below.) Add them to bliss ball recipes for a nutritious snack, I have many recipes for these on my blog. This one is really easy to make and tastes great Sprinkle them on your salads or stir-fry’s. Due to all their health benefits they are a great energy booster so you can use them to make a healthy sugar free version of energy gel by mixing 1/3 cup to 2 cups of water or coconut water. Make a healthy energy drink by mixing 500ml of coconut water with 3 tablespoons of chia seeds in a bottle. Not only are you getting the energy from the chia seeds but the coconut water is full of natural electrolytes. Add them to your morning fruit and yoghurt, cereal or bircher muesli. Use them as an egg substitute in baking. Do this by mixing 1 tablespoon of chia seeds with 3 tablespoons of water (this is equal to 1 egg), leave it to sit for 10 minutes until it forms a gel, then add it to your baking mixture. Thicken up sauces or soups by adding in a few tablespoons of the seeds. Make a healthy jam by mixing 1/3 cup seeds with 2 cups of pureed fruit of your choice then leave to set in the fridge for about an hour. If you’re feeling really game you can eat them dry on their own, a little warning, if you do this they may get stuck in your teeth.
A few things to note when consuming chia:
Due to the amount of liquid they absorb it is important to drink lots of water when consuming them so you don’t get dehydrated. As they contain omega 3 fatty acids which, can be easily spoiled in the heat it is best to store them in the fridge once opened. So there you have it, the wonderful world of chia seeds! Check out some of my favourite chia recipes below.
lemon coconut chia pudding Lemon Coconut Chia Pudding
4 tbsp chia seeds 1/2 cup coconut milk 1/2 cup coconut water Juice of 1 lemon 1 tbsp lemon zest 1 tbsp of rice malt syrup (or sweetener of choice)
Place all ingredients in a jar, put the lid on tight and shake to combine.
Leave the jar to set in the fridge for at least 2 hours, then it’s ready to eat!
Mango Chia Pudding
mango chia pudding Flesh of 1 mango 1 tbsp shredded coconut 3 tbsp Greek yoghurt or coconut yoghurt 4 tbsp chia seeds
Blend the mango, coconut and yoghurt in a blender until well combined.
Pour the mixture into a glass, stir in the chia seeds until combined.
Leave to set in the fridge for at least 2 hours and enjoy.
Chai Breakfast Smoothie 1 cup milk of choice or coconut water ½ bananachia breakfast smoothie 1 tsp ginger, minced 1 tsp nutmeg 2 tsp cinnamon 2 tsp vanilla 1 handful of spinach (optional) 4 tbsp chia seeds Blend the spinach and liquid until smooth then add in the rest of the ingredients and blend.
Note: if you feel like having a warm drink heat the almond milk up before blending.
chia miaMia Uren is a health coach and founder of health blog Chia Mia. She is extremely passionate about living a healthy, happy life and her mission is to promote an educational approach to food and drink consumption by providing wholesome, tasty and stimulating alternatives. Through this she hopes to help men and women explore a positive, anxiety-free approach to eating and, ultimately, see how enjoyable and versatile healthy eating can be.
For more natural health tips visit our blog at: http://www.alkalife.com.au/blog
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