While Chia seeds have been a popular food in South and Central America for centuries, they are have only become more popular in North American and Europe in the last few years. With the amount of benefits that these small, nutrient-dense seeds provide, it’s about time! Chia Seeds are a nutritional powerhouse and lovely to eat. They are one of my favorite foods and a staple in my diet. I love making smoothies, sauces, puddings, porridges, raw dehydrated breads, crackers, and cookies with them. They are both unique in that they are a hydrocolliod (when combined with a liquid, they absorb the liquid and form a gel) and versatile in that they can be enjoyed in many different ways and are a great addition to many raw food recipes. Besides the extensive health benefits of these little seeds – did you know that they are also incredibly beautifying? Why? Because, they contain massive amounts of protein, essential fatty acids, antioxidants, minerals, and fiber.
The seeds of the chia plant, known scientifically as Salvica Hispanica, are among the richest known when it comes to essential fatty acid content, and nearly 30% of that is omega-3. They’re also a complete source of protein, which comprises about 20% of their mass. Chia seeds are also an excellent source of antioxidants, providing even more antioxidants than fresh blueberries. One of the benefits of this high antioxidant content is that the oils in chia seeds stay fresh much longer than other oils. They also provide a large host of minerals: iron, calcium, niacin, magnesium, copper, zinc and phosphorus. And on top of all of that goodness, the fiber in chia seeds lowers blood sugar by slowing the absorption and breakdown of saccharides in the body and improves overall digestion and elimination.
This ultimately adds up to three things: healthy skin, healthy nails, and healthy hair. Chia seeds help skin stay young, vibrant, firm, and smooth. They also help prevent and heal skin conditions. Because nails and hair are also made almost entirely of protein, the high protein content of chia helps create strong nails and hair and promotes growth.
So if you’re already enjoying the benefits of Morrocco Method shampoos for your hair (which I love), or Sandalwood Oil to enliven your skin, and you want to take that to the next level, or if you just want to enjoy a healthy, beautifying, and delicious food, I’d recommend eating chia seeds regularly. They are easy to add to your diet. Here are three of my favorite recipes.
This delicious smoothie contains everything your hair needs to grow.
2 cups raw almond milk (add more almond milk of you like your smoothies more liquidy than thick)
2 tablespoons chia seeds
1 ripe banana
1/2 cup raw pumpkin seeds
1/2 teaspoon sea kelp
1 -2 teaspoons Vitamineral Earth
sweeten with raw honey or stevia
Add chia seeds and almond milk to blender. Do not blend – let sit for 15 minutes to allow the chia seeds to absorb some of the almond milk. Then add the rest of the ingredients and blend until smooth. Drink and enjoy!
This fantastic recipe tastes like bread pudding and makes a great dessert or breakfast.
1-2 cups raw almond milk (the more you use, the thinner it will be)
2 tbsp chia seeds
1/2 cup cashews
1 handful raisins
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp vanilla
dash of nutmeg
sweeten with raw honey or stevia to taste (English Toffee flavored stevia is ideal for that “bread pudding” flavor)
Add chia seeds and almond milk to blender. Do not blend – let sit for 15 minutes to allow the chia seeds to absorb some of the almond milk. Then add the rest of the ingredients except for the raisins and blend until smooth. Pour into a bowl, add the raisins, and enjoy!
For one more, check out this Chia Breakfast Porridge Recipe, which is a favorite from a while ago that our readers love.
With all of these recipes, you should be well on your way to enjoying the benefits of chia seeds. If you have chia recipes to share, or if you’ve tried these recipes, be sure to to comment below!