Chia seeds are one of the most highly prized foods you can eat and should be consumed every day. They have been around for centuries and have been a staple food resource for many South American indigenous cultures throughout history. Economic historians have suggested that it was as important as maize as a food crop with the seeds sometimes ground, while whole seeds were used for nutritious drinks and as a food source.
Packed Full of Antioxidants
Antioxidants are vital for reducing free radicals. When your body breaks down foods or is exposed to environmental toxins, it produces unstable compounds called free radicals. Free radicals have been said to cause damage known as oxidative stress, which may contribute to the development of cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, and Alzheimer’s, eye, heart and Parkinson’s diseases.
While some free radicals are naturally created during the metabolic process to aid digestion and for converting food into energy. The problem is our body can get overloaded with free radicals from things like alcohol, exposure to the sun, industrial pollution, smoking and car fumes. Free radicals can multiply and left unchecked can damage cells and affect your DNA, which in turn can reduce your immune function and cause premature aging as well.
The Chia seed nutritional profile is absolutely amazing, and is packed with anti-oxidants. Because it so versatile and quick to use, it is fast becoming the preferred food for getting antioxidants in your diet.
High in Protein and Fibre
Chia seeds are also high in protein and fibre. Around 22% of the seeds bodyweight is made up of amino-acid protein and unlike other protein-rich seeds do not have to be ground up before you consume them. The soluble fibre in just one tablespoon is equivalent to nearly one fifth of your average daily fibre requirement.
Chia Seeds and Weight Loss
Chia seeds are great for weight-loss too. The little seed turns into a gel when it absorbs moisture and swells up to 30 times its own bodyweight making you feel full. It then slowly releases the fluid back into your system during digestion and is a great way of gently incorporating fibre into your diet. We are even starting to see this versatile seed being incorporated into weight-loss meal replacement shakes which is a major step forward.
Chia seeds are also great for lowering the glycaemic properties of any food you combine them with. Eating foods which are low on the Glycaemic index helps to regulate your blood sugar levels so you donÃ¢â�¬â�¢t get massive blood sugar spikes which is great news for diabetics.
Meals Come Alive with Calcium-Rich Chia Seeds
You can add chia signs to just about anything. They have a very mild nutty taste and are a welcome boost to cooked foods, breakfast cereals and porridge. Your kids will love it too! If you want to improve your childÃ¢â�¬â�¢s nutrition, try sprinkling a few tablespoons onto the morning breakfast cereal. You will greatly improve the nutritional quality of the food and provide fibre without them even knowing.
Combine the nutritional properties of chia with the high levels of calcium (5 times more than milk) it is no wonder why so many people are turning to chia seeds to improve their bone health and general wellbeing.
For great recipe ideas go to http://www.soshealthfoods.com/