Nine ways to add chia seeds to your diet

Posted on: 28 November 2017 by Eloise Craven-Todd

When it comes to the nutritional benefits of eating chia seeds, the list is endless.

Chia seedsOne of the great things about Chia Seeds is just how versatile they are – you can pretty much add them to anything for an omega-3, protein and dietary fibre boost. Chia seeds have a neutral flavour so you can add them to so many foods and recipes without impacting the taste. Unlike flax seeds, not only do they have more omega-3 but there is no need to mill them to take advantage of their nutritious qualities.

Chia Seeds are extremely high in dietary fibre, which everyone could use more of, at close to 5g per 15g serving. An interesting fact is that due to the nature of the dietary fibre in chia seeds, they can absorb 10-12x their weight in water, becoming gel-like and expanding in your stomach. This helps to keep you feeling fuller longer and slows the absorption of food, helping you to eat fewer calories. Fibre also feeds the friendly bacteria in your intestine which is important as researchers have found that keeping your gut bacteria well fed and happy is absolutely crucial for health.

These wonder seeds also contain a high-quality plant protein, which contributes to the growth of muscles and maintains your bones in top shape. Thanks to their high levels of antioxidants chai seeds fight the production of free radicals that damage cells and contribute to ageing and many diseases including cancer. This attribute of chia seeds also has a positive side effect in that it helps to protect the seeds from going rancid, keeping your product fresh for longer.

Chia seeds can be added to your diet every day in the following ways:

Chia seed pudding

Make a chia pudding

You can make a delicious pudding using chia seeds as a base. Add the chia seeds to milk (or milk substitute such as almond milk/coconut milk, etc.), let soak for 20-30 minutes and include flavours such as vanilla or cocoa, or even fruit. Great as a nutritious breakfast pudding or for dessert.

Stir in water or juice

One of the simplest ways to incorporate chia seeds into your diet is to just add them to your water or juice – throw a spoonful into your glass, stir, wait a few minutes for the chia to absorb some of the liquid and you’re good to go.

Mix chia in smoothies

Just add a spoonful of chia seeds to your regular smoothies and you’re good to go. Plenty of smoothie recipes could use a boost from chia seeds.

Use as a breakfast topping 

Easy – just sprinkle a spoonful onto your oatmeal, cereal, yoghurt, salad, pasta, or even your stir-fry. The sky is the limit as to which foods would benefit from a sprinkle of chia seeds.

Baking with chia seeds

Bake with delicious homemade bread

Chia seeds are fantastic when used in baked goods such as bread, cakes, muffins, cookies, breakfast bars – you name it.

Consume with other grains and seeds 

Add a spoonful when cooking rice or quinoa for a great nutritional boost.

Add to homemade jam 

Make an amazing homemade jam using chia seeds. Since they form a gel when exposed to liquid, the consistency is really similar to regular jam – just healthier!

Use as a super healthy thickener 

Chia seeds can be a great replacement for flour when thickening stews or gravies – just pre-soak the seeds to form a gel and then mix them in to add thickness.

Swap oil with Andean Sol chia oil

Add a spoonful to your juice or smoothie or consume directly for big plant based omega-3 boost. Cold pressed to maximise flavour the Olive & Chia Oil can be drizzled, dipped or doused over food.\

Further information can be found at Andean Sol.

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