In today’s article, we consider the beautiful plant called Chia. This plant has a lot of health and nutritional significances which you shall soon read about in the succeeding paragraphs. Its botanical name is Salvia Hispanica. Apparently, this plant got its name from the land of its origin; the Hispanic lands of America.
To discuss this plant, it is important that we consider its backgrounds first; then proceed with other aspects of it. Let’s begin.
Where Chia Seeds Come From?
The Chia plant is one of the oldest plants in Latin America. Their history dates back to over 2000 years ago; back in a time when the Mayans and Aztecs ruled the face of South America. The Mayans knew the importance of the plant and that is why they had to preserve it for thousands of years so that future generations could benefit from it many health and nutritional gifts. In fact, they gave it the name “Chia” since they believed it is a natural source of energy which was very important for their daily work.
In today’s South America, you will find the Chia in Mexico. This beautiful plant or seed as the case may be is easily found in both the countrysides of Mexico and in the gardens of zoologists who have an eye for significant plants. Now, we look at the health benefits of Chia seeds.
Health Benefits of Chia Seeds
All over the world, doctors and nutritionists have come to believe that this amazing seed has a lot of good uses to the human body system. These assertions are not just right, but important for the sake of mankind and herbology. Below are some of the many amazing benefits of chia,or better put, some of the reasons you need chia in your diet.
Prevention of Diabetes
Chia has been linked with the prevention of diabetes. Researches carried out years earlier by scientists and food nutritionists suggest that the chia seed has links with the prevention of rapid development of Type 2 diabetes. In this and in many ways you will soon learn about, chia seeds deserve to be a worthy member of your kitchen army.
Important Source of Dietary Fiber
There are not too many sources of dietary fiber in the market today that will not jeopardize the state of health of the consumer. Sure you can stroll down to the nearest grocery store and order any vegetable of choice, or do so in the nearest eatery, but you may never get the quality of fiber which only the chia possesses. The chia manages to provide adequate fiber without giving you too much weight. This factor alone makes it a great choice for many food lovers that are overweight.
Promotes Healthy Brains
If there are foods that help make the brains healthier and smarter, why not eat them? Well, if you have ever asked yourself that question, you will find a suitable answer in chia. The chia contains some Omega 3 fatty acids that have shown positive influence on the human brain.
Rich Source of Calcium
When there is an extra supply of calcium, it can only mean that there will be extra strength in the associated structures that need it. Eating chia guarantees that you will develop stronger teeth and bones as you will be getting a great percentage of the daily requirement of calcium from just a few grams of chia seed. Once more, I hope you have found a place in your kitchen where the chia may serve you as long as it continues to deliver.
Manganese is also a big player in the bone strengthening business. It may not be as big as calcium; but it is big enough to be recognized. Like calcium; its counterpart, it helps the body develop stronger bones and tougher teeth. On analysis of the chia, it was discovered that its manganese content is just about enough to suffice for the daily demand of manganese by the body.
Chia contains a sizeable amount of phosphorus. This phosphorus works together with calcium and manganese to provide toughness and rigidity to the teeth and bones of the body. But basically, phosphorus instigates protein synthesis at the cellular level. This means that it will help foster faster healing in the event that a person suffers internal or external injury.
Regulates Appetite and Sleep
Research has linked chia seeds with sleep and appetite. This link is a positive one in this case. In people who consume chia seeds, it was observed that it made them develop an appetite to eat when the body lacked enough energy. Conversely, it made the body lose appetite when there is more than enough energy in the system. But this is just one aspect of its numerous benefits. This adorable plant contains tryptophan; a natural substance that induces sleep when present. So, depending on the signal it receives from the brain.
One of the major concerns of consumers today is that the food they eat may contain either too much fat or any other substance that will not be good for their health. As many foods are directly linked with increased blood pressure, it is only right that consumers appreciate the chia for its remarkable importance in this aspect. It contains the good type of cholesterol and some reasonable mounts of Low Density Lipoprotein simply known as LDL. These two compounds are known to help reduce a high blood pressure.
Massive Nutrient and Small Calories
What the average food consumer is looking for is the perfect food that will provide excellent nutrition without having to risk accumulating too much calories which will result in gaining excess weight. The chia, as you shall soon see, contains a great variety of nutrients that have numerous benefits to the human body.
The importance of antioxidants cannot be overemphasized and the importance of a seed which contains it can equally not be overemphasized. With the increasing rates at which cancer ravages people across the world, it makes great sense that a plant like chia which contains many antioxidant elements should become a part of our daily food. What these antioxidants do is that they prevent cancerous growths by slowing the oxidation of cells in the body in the case of tumors.
Helps You Lose Weight The Smart Way
Weight loss is one of the greatest concerns of overweight individuals. Most practical ways of losing weight that professionals recommend are either too expensive or too painful. However, there are few good ways of losing weight without having to waste money or get pained. Regular consumption of chia may not necessarily guarantee quick weight loss, but it will help you shed some excess weight over time when you keep at it. This is made possible by the high fiber content of the chia which allows the consumer to gain energy without accumulating excess weight. This works best when chia is incorporated in the diet than when it is just used for pharmaceutical purposes.
The nutritional facts about the chia are as follows:
1 Ounce of chia contains:
- 11g of fiber
- 4 g of protein
- 9g of fat
- 18 per cent RDA
- 30 % manganese
- 27% Phosphorus
- Vitamins B3, B2, B1, K etc
Chia Seeds in Water
Chia seeds can be eaten in a number of ways but then, it is important to know what the chia seed looks like when out inside water. The most popular combination, or product when chia seeds are put in water is the chia detox solution. It is prepared with chia seeds, lime and agave nectar solution.
The mixture is well shaken and left to stand for at least ten minutes. After which it is shaken again and drank. Research has shown that this helps reduce the toxic effect of xenobiotics in the body. In this regard, the seed acts as a detox agent.
Ensure to use the agave juice solution while preparing the chia detox water since it helps improve the sweetness of the water. This solution, in addition to its detox functions, helps the individual consume more water which is good for health on the long run.
Other Interesting Ways to Use Chia Seeds
Some of these really beautiful ways of using the chia include the following:
To Replace Eggs: Now eggs are really good for your health and at some point may not be good enough due to its fatty content. When the day comes that you no longer want eggs to form an integral component of your diet, you can consider using the chia.
For Puddings: Not everyone likes puddings irrespective of how cool they could be. But for those who cannot do without pudding, this plant provides both hope and taste to the pudding business. It is very easy to make pudding out of the chia. Simply add cocoa powder, milk, milk, vanilla and any sweetener you decide to go with. Don’t stick to vanilla if you don’t like it. There are several other flavors at your disposal which you can use to make the most out of this pudding
To Make Thicker Soups: It is common sense that blended grains, when added to your soup makes it thicker. What you may not know is that chia seeds can serve just that purpose. This thickening effect also works well for meatballs. In the place of breadcrumbs, you may simply add some chia seeds to you meatball. It will give it the same thick, palatable appearance and taste.
For Extra Energy: The chia is an incredible source of energy which both adults and kids can enjoy. To enjoy this energy is a palatable way, consider making energy gels or bars from chia. The gels will come in handy when there is a quick need to ingest some energy-giving food while the bars are portable enough for even school children to take to school.
The benefits of chia go on and on. Scientists have had no option than to consider chia as one of the world’s leading super foods from the grain family But then, that is not what is of importance to this article. What is important is that you observe the many health benefits of this plant and its amazing seeds, then include the chia appropriately in your diet for maximum health.