Try Chia Seeds: mini-mission

With the launch of the Chia Chronicles, I thought a mini-mission about chia seeds was in order.

I first read about using chia seeds for endurance sports in the amazing book, Born to Run, that made me want to be a runner. More importantly, the book sparked my interest in what the Tarahumara eat. Food is one of, if not the top way to improve your health. Because the Tarahumara are free of our modern day diseases and conditions, it only makes sense to me, to learn more about what they eat.

Aspiring runners or not, we all need to pay attention to our health and sometimes incorporate new food into our diet for improved health, (or drop food that is making us sick). It is our responsibility to do the research, and learn what’s best. We can’t rely on doctors to do this for us. Doctor will rarely tell you to change your diet, until it’s too late.  When was the last time you went to the doctor for congestion, complained of chronic colds and your doctor suggested you stop drinking milk? Probably never, but it is a well known fact that inflammation causes mucus and milk causes inflammation. Take charge of your health and health care and decide what is best for you.

So here is your mini-mission, try chia seeds.

Top 5 reasons to eat chia seeds:

  1. Chia seeds are great for vegetarians, because unlike flaxseed, chia seeds can be stored for long periods without becoming rancid and don’t require grinding. The oil they contain does not go rancid because of the high level of antioxidants.
  2. 1/4 cup of chia seeds has 160 calories and a whopping 11 grams of fiber.
  3. You do not need to grind the chia seeds to digest. It is a relatively easy to digest seed, whereas flaxseeds are not.
  4. Chia seeds are great for athletes because they are highly hydrophilic. Being hydrophilic means they absorb large amounts of water. Chia seeds can absorb over 10 times their weight in water making them a great enhancer in hydrating our bodies. They absorb the water we drink holding it in our system longer.
  5. Studies show that eating chia seeds slows down how fast our bodies convert carbohydrate calories into simple sugars. This leads scientists to believe that the chia seed may have great benefits for diabetics.

How to use Chia Seeds

  • Add a scoop to your water bottle before running or working out.
  • Sprinkle on yogurt, salad, oatmeal or just about anything.
  • Use in recipes from Fuel Your Run the Tarahumara Way.

Try my favorite breakfast smoothie…..

  • 1/2 cup soy milk
  • 1 tablespoon soy yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon – 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon all natural peanut butter
  • 1 tablespoon chocolate vegan protein powder
  • 1/4 cup dry oatmeal slightly moistened with water
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds
  • 1/2 cup ice

Blend all ingredients and enjoy!

What foods do you really enjoy eating that benefit your health?

For more experiments to simplify your life, read Mini-missions for Simplicity. It’s available on the Amazon Kindle store, but you don’t need a Kindle to read it. Kindle books can also be read using the Free Kindle Reader App for your Web Browser, PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone, BlackBerry, or Android.

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Comments

  1. says

    Hey Courtney,

    I had never even heard of chia seeds until I saw them on here and I am quite into my diet and nutrition!
    I am a bit of a fan of eating local food though, different races have different digestive systems (for example Asians tend to have more amylase in their saliva so digest carbs very well – hence high rice content is good!) Possibly, being in the UK sunlower/pumpkin seeds may suit me better as I can grow them in my garden? Not sure, something I think about a lot, liking these posts:)

    The healthy food I love the most is broccoli, I can’t eat enough of it and get wierd cravings if I haven’t eaten it for a couple of days!

    • Courtney Carver says

      Kate, I didn’t really think about it, but you are so right about different foods being right for different digestive systems geographically. I think that Chia Seeds most resemble Flax seeds though, and have different health properties than pumpkin or sunflower seeds. I haven’t researched it enough to know for sure but will look into it.

  2. says

    Wow – I’ve never heard of Chia seeds except in the “Chia Pet” context. After reading your blog, I checked it out online and there’s a lot of buzz about their beneficial properties. I’m going to try it out. Thanks for the scoop!

    • Courtney Carver says

      Sheri, Chia Seeds are readily available at local health food stores and Whole Foods. I just put a scoop in my oatmeal this morning! Thanks for commenting and glad to find your blog! Take Care, Courtney

  3. Maureen O'Neill says

    I have just heard about chia seeds and am very impressed.
    Could someone please tell me how long it takes before the benefits of chia seeds are apparent,
    Many thanks.
    Maureen

    • Courtney Carver says

      Maureen, That is a great question. I am going to put it out there to an expert and get back to you! Thanks for reading.

  4. Tracy says

    I actually just learned that you can use chia seeds as an egg replacement in vegan (or healthy) baking. You take 1 T. chia seeds and add 1/8th cup water. Let them soak for a minute or two and then add to whatever you’re making. It worked great!

    • dazywings says

      these chia are not the same as the chia pet seeds. these are tiny tiny seeds, that I enjoy adding to water, usually with a hit of lemon juice-So good!

  5. says

    Wonderful post about Chia Seeds! I am having an Event on my blog on cooking with seeds, and I chose Chia seeds! I would like to link back to your post and maybe you can participate too! =)

  6. says

    I’m so glad you mentioned chia seeds. I hadn’t heard of them until I was going through a rough time last spring after deciding to go off a potent anti-depressant cold turkey. I would never do that again but was left with stomach issues and anxiety.

    A friend gave me some chia seeds, and I began putting them in my smoothie each morning. I couldn’t have gotten through that rough patch without the chia seeds and can’t imagine going without now. They’re not too pricey. I bought some at a health store for awhile then discovered Costco carries them pretty cheaply: $6.50 for a two-pound bag!

    Will try your smoothie recipe – it sounds delicious!

    • dazywings says

      drink the seeds and the water. I started out slow as it isn’t a typical taste for me. I’d drink 3/4ths of a water bottle, then add like a 1/2tsp of them. shake. wait 10 minutes for them to “gel” and then drink. try with a hit of lemon juice for some added flavor. I am up to a 1/2 bottle of this and love it. the seeds become semi chewy, though I just drink it down. you can just add them and drink it immediately, but then you should be sure to have some liquid in your tummy, as they absorb 10x their size

  7. Abby says

    It’s great to have the ‘syrup’ for traditional Persian sharbat (sherbet, our ice cream-like dessert has NOTHING on this stuff), a sort of sweet drink made with all kinds of delicious ingredients, but chia seeds are a common one, around to mix in your water to make water more interesting & tempting to drink. I am trying to cut soda out of my diet completely, but I have that sweet tooth, so I use sugar in this to help cut the cravings. A good link is http://en.petitchef.com/recipes/10-sharbat-families-fid-580747 – it doesn’t specifically mention chia seeds, but you can use the basic premise.

  8. Jaci says

    Wonderful post. I’ve been enjoying the benefits of Chia seeds for almost two years now. I came across them by accident when reading about super foods. Before that point, like another reader, I had only heard of the Chia pet. How things change.

  9. Ada says

    I’m from El Salvador and I grew up drink the chai fresca drink. Eating chai was a part of my life I didn’t realize how good it is for you.

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