Chia seeds are a nutritious staple in our household, I even feed them to my dog! Chia seeds are an ancient Mayan and Aztec food originating from South America. They are an excellent source of protein, and extremely rich in Omega 3 essential fatty acids, antioxidants (30% more than blueberries), calcium (6 x more than whole milk), vitamins B1, B2 & B3, manganese, magnesium, phosphorous, zinc and potassium (twice that of bananas). They are almost completely carbohydrate free, most of which is in fact fibre. They have been known to aid in weight loss, as they expand with water and create satiety after eating. There have been studies to suggest that consumption of Chia seeds may help to reduce hypertension, stabilise blood sugar levels and aid in Type 2 diabetes, increase stamina and endurance with exercise, lower cholesterol and associated risks of heart disease, act as an anti-inflammatory, as well as having anti-cancer compounds such as kaempferol, myricetin and quercetin.
They are relatively affordable, available in most supermarkets these days, and are super easy to prepare. There are so many different ways to include them into your diet and cooking, they can be used to thicken sauces, help to keep your baking moist, and can even be used as an egg replacer for those that are unable to, or choose not to, eat eggs! See my easy overnight breakfast Chia pudding recipe for ideas.