Yes! Same seeds found on the popular ‘Chia Pet’ product! They are actually an extremely healthy and highly prized food source in Central America since ancient times going back to the Mayans, Aztecs and their forebears. Chia may have even rivaled maize among these peoples. (1) The chia seed is first mentioned in the historical records of early Spanish explorers. Today, chia seeds are just beginning to gain notoriety for their rich nutritional benefits.
This rich source of nutrition finds them often compared to flaxseed. One study involving post-menopausal women showed that the ground seed raised levels of omega-3 fatty acids, linked widely to heart health. Another laboratory study published in the Journal of Nutrition in 2009 demonstrated that rats fed a diet of chia seeds had lower blood fats and cholesterol, suggesting that chia seeds may play a role in controlling diabetes. (2)
Chia seeds are especially rich in essential fatty acids, protein, fiber, calcium, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals.(3) They are low in cholesterol and carbohydrates. The fiber alone in just an ounce is equivalent to nearly half the recommended daily requirement! Chia seeds have a higher content of omega-3 than flax seeds, and do not have to be ground, but can be added directly to your juiced foods. Although the science is still inconclusive as to whether chia is a legitimate weight loss tool, it is believed that the added bulk, which contributes to a sense of fullness, and the energy boost from chia may indeed assist in losing weight.
- Handful of Spinach
- 2 handfuls of Grapes
- 2 oz Chia Seeds
- Unlike flax seeds, chia seeds need not be ground to digest them.
- This is also fine as a smoothie recipe.
- Some people juice (and smoothie) the entire orange - rind and all! You can do this and the rind contains many additional nutrients, but I find it too bitter!