I am a writer who loves researching and writing on many different topics, from health to tech and back again.
Chia seeds are small black or white seeds that have been around since the days of the Aztecs. Their resurgence in popularity is due to the more recent realization that they truly are a ‘Super food’ and incredibly healthy.
The best part is that they can be incorporated into your daily regime so easily and provide you with so many benefits.
What Nutrients Does A Chia Seed Have?
Despite their size, Chia seeds they have at least double the amount of protein found in any grain, 3 times the antioxidants of blueberries, 3 times more iron than spinach and double the amount of potassium than in a banana.
That's a lot to grasp, I know.
In addition they contain Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids and are gluten-free.
Gluten free? Yes! How perfect is that!
How Much Chia Should I Have Per Day?
Typically 1-2 tablespoons is all that is needed per day (slightly less for a child) and because they are tasteless, they can be incorporated into our daily diet in so many ways.
The only word of advice is not to wash them as they will immediately start absorbing any moisture and turn into Chia gel prematurely
(TIP: Chia Gel – Mix 1 part Chia seeds to 9 parts Water – stir to remove any clumping and let stand for 10 minutes – can store in refrigerator for up to 3 weeks).
What Is The Difference Between White and Black Chia Seeds?
There is no major difference between the black and white Chia seeds as far as taste and nutrition goes.
White seeds tend to cost slightly more and are harder to find however at the end of the day what you prefer to use is up to your own individual choice.
Typically you can purchase packets of seeds from your local supermarket mixed.
Organic Chia Seeds
50 Ways To Use Chia Seeds
So now that you know how incredibly healthy they are lets look at 50 ways that you can incorporate them into your day.
- Bread – You can use a mortar and pestle or any grinder to turn your Chia seeds into a powder form which you can add to your mixture when making bread or flatbread.
- Butter Substitute – Simply replace 1/2 the butter required in a recipe with 1/2 cup Chia gel, or replace butter entirely. The Chia gel will provide all the moisture you need.
- Cakes – Add into any cake mixture before cooking to provide a poppy-seed look.
- Capsules – If you do not like the idea of adding Chia to your foods or drinks, consider a daily capsule to get your dose of nutrients.
- Chia Spread – Blend Chia gel with a dash of butter in a blender to make a smooth Chia spread which can be used as normal butter but this one has added nutrients.
- Chia Chocolate – Melt your favorite chocolate, stir in a tablespoon of Chia seeds, and pour mixture into a tray and place in refrigerator to set. (TIP: Try using Dark Chocolate as it melts fastest and has its own antioxidants)
- Cereal – Sprinkle over cereal, muesli or oats for a nutritional punch.
- Dessert Toppings – Soak Chia seeds in fruit juice and then pour over ice cream or cakes as a fruity topping.
- Dressings – Add to a salad dressing in their raw or ground form.
- Drink – Add to a glass of water or juice. Make sure to stir well and drink promptly as they very quickly soak the liquid and thicken up like a gel.
11. Egg Substitute – Pre-mix with water to make an egg substitute for when you bake cakes or cookies - Mix one tablespoon of Chia seeds (keep whole or grind) with three tablespoons of water. Let sit for 20 minutes, then use in place of one egg.
12. Eggs – When making scrambled eggs or an omelette, mix into beaten eggs then cook as normal.
13. Face Mask – Chia seeds are full of omega-3 fatty acids which help to soothe inflammation. Ground seeds, mixed into mashed avocado make for a therapeutic mask for your skin.
14. Fish – Sprinkle over freshly steamed fish to add texture.
15. Flour Substitute – Grind or mill Chia seeds to use in any recipe as a substitute for flour – such as cakes, waffles and pancakes.
16. French Toast – Add to egg mixture before soaking bread or simply sprinkle on top of cooked french toast with maple syrup.
17. Granola – Mix your favorite nuts, dried fruits, some honey and cinnamon with Chia seeds, lay on a baking tray and cook for about 20 minutes, stirring regularly. Top with a dollop of yoghurt.
18. Hydration – Use Chia seeds, consumed in water as a way to retain hydration for longer. Being hydrophilic, means that Chia seeds help to prolong hydration and retain electrolytes in body fluids are lost through exercise and hot weather.
19. Jam (fruit spread) – Simply push (defrosted) fruits and their juice through a sieve, add a tablespoon of Chia seeds and let sit for 10 or so minutes and it will thicken. Excellent sugar-free alternative.
20. Jelly – Add to jelly before setting for a fun alternative for the kids.
Chia - The Superfood
21. Laxative – Due to their high fiber content, it can be consumed in water as a natural laxative solution.
22. Marinade – Mix into your favorite marinade or barbecue sauce to brush over steaks, roasts, chicken or any meats of your choice.
23. Mayonnaise Substitute - Replace 1/2 of your mayonnaise with a couple of tablespoons of Chia gel to not only save calories but fat.
24. Meatballs – Sprinkle Chia seeds into your favorite meatball mixture as a replacement to egg or as well as. Cook as normal.
25. Muffins – Add to any muffin mixture as an enhancement or as a replacement to egg or flour.
26. Nut Mix – Make your own healthy snack of nuts, dried fruit, sunflower seeds and Chia seeds to nibble on during the day.
27. Oil Substitute – Mix your Chia seeds in water to make a gel, stir to ensure they do not form clumps, and then use the Chia gel to replace at least 1/3 of any oil or fat in a recipe without impacting the flavor.
28. Pasta and/or Ravioli – Add to your pasta sauces or mix into the pasta itself if you are making it from scratch.
29. Pet Food – Soak 1 part Chia to 8 parts water and let the Chia seed absorb the water and then give pets a teaspoon in their evening meal. Helps with appetite, coat and skin. If you are using seeds dry instead, be careful of the quantity you sprinkle on their food as they absorb 10 times their volume in water so make sure you keep your animals well hydrated.
30. Porridge – Mix ground Chia seeds into your porridge mixture before cooking.
41. Spread – Grind seeds into a powder form (of by them ground) and mix with your favorite spread for use in sandwiches and on toast.
42. Stews or casseroles – Mix into a stew to help thicken it. Remember to ensure there is enough liquid available if you want to retain some moisture to your end result.
43. Stir Fry – If you love a healthy stir fry, sprinkle some Chia seeds through the mix or on top for some added crunch.
44. Stuffing – Mix with spices to enhance volume next time you add stuffing to a chicken or turkey.
45. Tapioca – Mix a tablespoon of Chia seeds with Almond milk, or any milk of your choice and let it set in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes for a tapioca-like drink/pudding.
46. Tea – Lovely mixed into iced tea or your favorite herbal tea.
47. Upset Stomach – Swallow 1-2 tablespoons of Chia seeds in their whole form with just enough water to get them down. Wait a few minutes for them to work their wonder. They will help to absorb stomach acids and then follow with a glass of water to help them pass through your system.
48. Vegetables – Steam or blanch your favorite vegetables and sprinkle with Chia seeds.
49. Weight Loss – When Chia seeds meet water (or any liquid) they swell up so they have a large role to play with weight loss, helping with appetite suppression as it gives you a fuller feeling for longer.
50. Yogurt – Stir seeds into any yogurt, fruit or plain to add texture.
31. Potato Mash – Soak in milk, or water for a few minutes then mix through creamy mashed potato.
32. Pudding – Make a standard pudding of your preference, mix through some white and or black Chia seeds to make a polka-dot pudding.
33. Quiche – Stir through your egg mixture prior to cooking.
34. Raw (soaked) – Soak in water for a few minutes and eat with a spoon. They are quite slimy in texture and have hardly any flavor but slide down easy.
35. Raw (dry) – Simply eat them raw. They are crunchy and provide for a nutritious snack.
36. Rice – Stir into cooked rice prior to serving.
37. Salads – Sprinkle on a salad to add texture.
38. Scones – Replace cream with a lovely blend of Chia seeds, butter and cinnamon. It makes for a lovely topping for freshly baked hot scones.
39. Smoothie – Blend into a fruit smoothie to not only provide more substance but help you stay fuller for longer – add them into your glass at the end as they can get stuck in the blender.
40. Soup – Add to soup to act as a thickening agent.
Healthy Chia Seeds
Take the challenge and try Chia seeds for yourself. You will be overwhelmed by their versatility and you'll be feeling super charged in no time!
Visit 'a la naturale' for more ways to live healthy.
This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.
© 2014 AnswerQuestions