Wednesday, March 2, 2011
"What the heck are chia seeds?" is the common phrase we're hearing frequently these days. More than just something to make a Garfield chia pet grow a fabulous green afro, these seeds are becoming the newest health craze. Well we all know about health crazes, short lived or there's gotta be some catch right? Well, let's go over the benefits of chia seeds.
You've probably heard of flax seeds, they're fine but honestly, I hate the taste I get when I bite into them. It tastes like little pops of natural gas to me. Yum... not. Flax seeds are not well digested and need to be ground for the maximum benefit to be received when you eat them. Chia seeds don't. You get the maximum benefits regardless of the form and they slow digestion to keep you fuller longer.
What are the benefits?
According to the research I've done, here's the lowdown. 2 tbsp of chia seeds contain a lot of antioxidants (more than blueberries), a goodly amount of omega 3 which is good for brain and heart health, fiber (7 grams), protein (4 grams) and calcium (205 milligrams). All in all these little babies are packed with some serious nutrition.
Drawbacks? It lowers blood pressure so if you've already got low blood pressure, check with your doctor before using it. Omega 3's are blood thinners so if you're on an aspirin regimen, going to have surgery or are already taking prescription blood thinners, check with a doc before adding them in. They do have a lot of fiber and if you're not already used to fiber, you could get a little gassy and bloated. If you have sesame or mustard seed allergies, you could be allergic to chia seeds. The lesson here is if you have health conditions, give your doc a buzz before adding chia seeds to your diet.
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