Total Nutrition Technology
Monday, February 3, 2014 when you here chia seeds you might be thinking..."is this the ch-ch-ch-chia...chia seed"? And the answer to that question is...yes!  But these days, this tiny superfood seed is becoming more known for being a great source of healthy omega-3 fats and fiber and being very easy to incorporate into your diet. 

Chia seeds actually come from a flowering plant in the mint family that is native to South America.  They are thought to have been a staple in the ancient Aztec diet.  In addition to being an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acid, this seed is an excellent source of fiber with 10 grams per ounce (about 2 Tablespoons) and contains minerals including iron, calcium and zinc and protein.  These little seeds come in either white or dark brown or black color and can be eaten whole or milled.

Incorporating chia seeds into your diet could't be easier.  You can simply add them to everything and anything.  The seeds are tasteless and can simply be sprinkled on top of your food, such as a salad, or added to a smoothie.  Chia seeds can be left whole, milled or added to a little water to turn into a gel.  Here are just a few ways you can utilize these tiny super-seeds:
Now you may ask yourself, "why would I really add this little seed into my diet"?  Well the reasons are a plenty:
Help Fight Diabetes
There are currently studies to look at chia as a natural treatment for type-2 diabetes.  When chia seeds are put into water it creates a gelatinous coating around the seed which helps slow down the digestion process - preventing blood sugar spikes.
Fiber Boost 
A one-ounce serving of chia has 10 grams of dietary fiber which is about one third of the recommended daily intake for adults. — about a third of the recommended daily intake for adults. 
Packed with Omega-3
Chia seeds contain nearly five grams of omega-3 fatty acids in just a one-ounce serving which are essential for brain health.
Stronger Teeth And Bones 
There is actually 18 percent of the recommended daily intake for calcium in a single one-ounce serving of chia seeds which certainly helps you along the way to maintaining oral and bone health.  
Packed with Minerals 
Two tablespoons of chia seeds contain not only 18 percent of the DRI for calcium, but 35 percent for phosphorus, 24 percent for magnesium and about 50 percent for manganese. These nutrients help prevent hypertension and maintain a healthy weight, and are important for energy metabolism and a part of DNA synthesis.
Chia seeds contain no gluten or grains. Therefore, all of the nutritional benefits of chia seeds can be obtained on a gluten-free diet.
Protein Power
Chia seeds also make a great source of protein and don't have any cholesterol. One 28-gram serving of these super seeds has 4.4 grams of protein.  So chia seeds can be a great source of protein for vegetarians.
Blood Sugar Regulation
Chia seeds can play an important role in regulating insulin levels. They can reduce insulin resistance and decrease abnormally high levels of insulin in the blood.  
Get Full
Chia seeds actually also contain tryptophan...that's right the same amino acid found in turkey!  But tryptophan doesn't just make you sleepy after a big Thanksgiving dinner, it can also help regulate your appetite, sleep and improve mood. 
Improve Heart Health 
Studies from the Cleveland Clinic have shown that chia seeds have improved blood pressure in diabetics and may also play a role in increasing healthy cholesterol while lowering total LDL and triglyceride cholesterol. That's healthy heart news!

Do you have a favorite way of adding chia seeds to your diet?

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Chia Seeds - photo credit: Jennuine Captures via photopin cc

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