About Chia Seeds23.12.2012
by Life Enthusiast Staff
Chia is a commercially grown seed that is very rich in omega-3 essential fatty acids, more than any other vegetable (specifically alpha linolenic acid or ALA). It also supplies antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and fiber.
Increase your intake of vegetable proteins and help improve your natural defenses against degenerative disease.
- Improve Joint Function and Mobility
- Enhance Digestive Health, Bowel Function and Regularity
- Cardiovascular Health
- Fat Metabolism and Weight Loss Assistance
- Nourish Your Skin and Hair
The mild, pleasant taste makes it very appealing in food preparation and diversity in the kitchen. Convenient and ideal for mixing into virtually any food.
The whole chia seed can be absorbed by your digestive system, and the entire seed can be safely used as a food ingredient.
All natural, no transfats, very few carbohydrates, certified Non-GMO, Vegan, Kosher, and gluten-free for those with celiac disease.
Sprinkle Chia Seeds on cereals, mix with yogurt, smoothies or salads. Include Chia Seeds in baking and cooking: breads, cookies, muffins, burgers, soups, casseroles, pastas or anything else you can think of.
Compared to other grains, even soy. One 12g (2 tablespoons) serving of Chia Seed offers as much vegetable protein as 1 ½ cups of Kidney beans.
Than any other natural source. Every serving of Chia Seed provides more than 5,000 mg of dietary fiber... as much as in 1 ¼ cups of All-Bran cereal!
More Nutrition than Conventional Sources
8X MORE Omega 3s
|Chia Seed offers superior Omega 3 benefits over fish oils and salmon without the strong taste. Omega-3 fatty acids play a crucial role in brain function, growth and development. Chia Seed is the richest vegetarian source of EFAs in nature.|
4X MORE Dietary Fiber
|Rich fiber content is one of the main reasons Chia Seed is considered nature's perfect whole food. Dietary fiber has been proven to lower high blood levels of cholesterol. Because of chia's ability to absorb several times its weight in water, it may also help to curb hunger.|
3X MORE Antioxidants
|Laboratory and research has shown antioxidants help prevent the free radical damage that is associated with cancer.|
15X MORE Magnesium
|Magnesium helps with formation of bone and teeth, and assists the absorption of calcium and potassium.
Where calcium stimulates the muscles, magnesium is used to relax the muscles.
7X MORE Vitamin C
|Vitamin C promotes a healthy immune system, helps wounds heal, maintains connective tissue and aids in the absorption of iron.|
6X MORE Calcium
|Calcium is the chief supportive element in bones and teeth. Calcium salts make up about 70 percent of bone by weight, and give your bones strength and rigidity.|
3X MORE Iron
|The main function of iron is to help carry oxygen from your lungs to muscles and other organs. When iron is low, this oxygen consumption slows down.|
1.1X MORE Fiber
|Dietary fiber has been proven to lower high blood levels of cholesterol.|
50% MORE Folate
|Folate is needed to make DNA and RNA, which is critical during periods of rapid cell division and growth, such as infancy and pregnancy. Folate also helps to prevent changes to DNA that may lead to cancer.|
Chia Seed vs. Flax
Nutritional Value Details of Chia Seeds
Chia seeds are typically small ovals with a diameter of about one millimeter. They are mottle-colored with brown, gray, black and white.
1 tablespoon (tbsp) = 10 gram
||per 100 gm of
Chia Chia Seed
|per 1 oz of
Chia Chia Seed
|Calories||524 kcal (2194 KJ)||105 kcal (439 kJ)|
|Total Fat content||31.4 gm||6 gm|
|Saturated fatty acids||3.1 gm||0.5 gm|
|Trans fatty acids||0 gm||0 gm|
|Omega-6 Fatty acids||5.9 gm||1.0 gm|
|Omega-3 Fatty acids||20.36 gm||4.0 gm|
|Single unsaturated fatty acids||2.1 gm||0.4 gm|
|Cholesterol||0 gm||0 gm|
|Carbohydrates||37.5 gm||7.5 gm|
|Dietary fiber, total||33.7 gm||7.0 gm|
|Soluble dietary fiber||4.0 gm||0.8 gm|
|Insoluble dietary fiber||29.7 gm||6.0 gm|
|Protein||21.2 gm||4.0 gm|
|Vitamins||per 100 g/mg||Reference level (mg*)||1 oz cover (%)**
|Vitamin A||10 IU||***||***|
|Vitamin B2, Riboflavin||0.20||1.20||3.00|
|Vitamin B3, Niacin||11.20||13.00||17.00|
|Vitamin B8, Biotin||12500||30000||8|
|Minerals||per 100 g/mg||Reference level (mg*)||2 TB cover (%)**|
|Sodium||< 0.3||550||< 0.01|
|Based on the reference level of the D-A-C-H,
daily recommended for women,
healthy not pregnant, aged between 25 and 51 years
Percent per daily value
no Reference level
( D-A-C-H = Coalition of German DEG, Austria ÖGE, Swiss SVE and SGE )
Omega-3 and -6 fatty acids
The two essential fatty acids are the source of nutrients that control processes like blood pressure, coagulation of blood and the level of the blood fat. A balance of the fatty acids is very important, so that the fatty acids can work correctly. Chia Chia products contain this optimal balance of the fatty acids better than other oily seeds.
Vitamin B1 plays an essential role in the metabolism of carbohydrates and amino acids. Used by athletes Vitamin B1 helps improve performance through better conversion of carbohydrates and amino acids. Chia helps with this metabolism. B1 is involved in the cleavage of cells and in the formation of amino acids, fatty acids and carbohydrates.
Vitamin E is very important for the metabolism of fats as it protects the polyunsaturated fatty acids from destruction by oxidation. Vitamin E inhibits cardiac infarction, cancer, Alzheimer and it can protect against sediments in the blood vessels.
Calcium plays an essential role in the growth and maintenance of bones and teeth as well as in the signal processing in the nervous system. Calcium is needed for muscle contraction and it is also involved in blood coagulation. Calcium is an extremely important nutrient.
Magnesium is among other things necessary for normal muscle function, the relaxation. With low Magnesium athletes end up tearing their muscles, a common injury. Magnesium is involved in the extraction of sugar, in the cleavage of cells and in the metabolism of Calcium.
Phosphorus is involved together with Calcium in the formation of bones and teeth. It help maintain the pH level in the body.
Zinc is an activator of numerous enzymes and hormones, especially for healing from injuries.
Iron plays an important role in the red blood pigments. Iron is also responsible for the formation of the blood and the transport of oxygen. Especially for women, iron is an important nutritional component. A deficiency of iron results in weakness and anemia.
This mineral is a part of enzymes involved on the iron metabolism. Copper and Zinc are important in modulating many metabolic reactions.
The Vitamin B8 is involved in the metabolism of carbohydrates, amino- and fatty acids. A deficiency can result in sickness and depression.
Potassium plays together with sodium a role in the regulation of the water balance.
Chia Seeds Typically Contain:
- 20% protein
- 34% oil
- 25% dietary fiber (mostly soluble)
- significant levels of antioxidants
- no gluten and trace levels of sodium
- no known toxic components of Chia
- approximately 64% of the fats are omega-3 essential fatty acids
Many Ways to Eat Chia Seeds
Chia Seed may be eaten raw as a dietary supplement for essential fatty acids and fiber.
Drink Chia Seeds by soaking them in water, fruit or vegetable juice. In Mexico this is known as Chia fresca.
The Seeds can also be ground to produce a meal (called pinole) which can be made into porridge or baked into breads, cakes and biscuits.
When soaked in water, Chia Seeds are gelatinous in texture and are then used in gruels, porridges and puddings.
Chia sprouts may be eaten similar to alfalfa sprouts in salads, sandwiches and other dishes.
Most of us have heard of Chia sprouts grown on porous clay figurines - the popular Chia Pet.
"For months I was having stomach difficulties. Anytime I would lie down, I would suffer from severe indigestion and was unable to keep down any food. Needless to say, I slept sitting up all the time. I was prescribed several different types of medication and nothing worked... after taking the product (chia) for only 1 day I was sleeping in my bed. After two weeks of taking the chia I decided to take a break from it to find out if it was truly the chia that was making me feel better. The next day I was back sleeping in my chair again. In addition to sleep, I have lost inches and regained energy. Thanks chia"
M. Lou, Woodstock, Ontario
Helps Control Hunger
"I have found that chia, when eaten with breakfast, stops the huge rise in blood sugar one hour after breakfast. This post-breakfast rise is followed half an hour later by a huge drop that takes blood sugar down into what we call the "hunger zone." Chia also stops that blood sugar drop, keeping you out of the hunger zone. Chia at breakfast smoothes out the sugar peaks and valleys that make us uncontrollably hungry. I have found that 2 tablespoons of chia at breakfast is effective at controlling hunger all day on a 1500 calorie a day diet."
Dr. Jack Bukowski M.D., Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Associate Rheumatologist Brigham and Women's Hospital
Increased Energy, Glowing Skin
"As a nutritional biochemist, I am always looking for new whole foods that my clients can incorporate into their diet. (With Chia) Many people found they received increased energy, less blood sugar swings, and better moods. There was even a marked glow to the women's skin - wrinkles were also less visible as (chia's) EFA's plumped up their skin! I heartily recommend it to all my clients now. It seems to help with low level depression (especially the Seasonal Affective Disorder so many Northerners get this time of year), food cravings and increase sports stamina."
Wellness Through Balance
Better Shape Than 15-20 Years Ago
"Today, my family started our annual pre-spring cleaning of our back yard... to my surprise I found myself to be physically in better shape now than perhaps 15-20 years ago and perform the heavy labor to prepare the grounds as required. It's amazing that when you are in the regime of taking Chia you don't feel super power wellness until you put your body to task. After having taken medication for nearly 20 years, with which I never reached my current plateau readings of 123/72 with a pulse rate of 65, I'm happy to inform you that I have reached my personal goal that I have longed to reach."
M. Guerrero, Dallas, TX
The History of Chia
Chia (Salvia hispanica) is a plant of the genus Salvia in the Mint family, originating in Mexico. It was largely cultivated as one of the five most important food plants by the Aztecs in pre-Columbian times. Tribute and taxes to the Aztec priesthood and nobility were often paid in Chia seed. After the arrival of the Spaniards, the plant became almost extinct because of cultural and religious reasons.
Chia Seed is traditionally consumed in Mexico, the southwestern United States, and South America, but is not widely known in Europe. The United States Food and Drug Administration regards Chia as a food with an established history of safe consumption.
Today, Chia is grown commercially in its native Mexico, and in Bolivia, Argentina, Ecuador, and Guatemala. A similar species, golden Chia, is used in the same way but not widely grown commercially.
White Chia (Salvia Alba), also known as Chia, is grown in Peru.
The Origin of Salba Seed
Salba Seeds are simply patented, white chia seed.
Salba Seed is the result of over 10 years of traditional (non-GMO) plant breeding of Salvia Hispanica L.
The first experimental plots for Salba Seed were started in 1991 in Argentina. A long process of careful plant research was carried out by painstakingly sorting the few white grains produced by the mostly black grain producing Salba plant, and replanting them. Researchers were able to produce a primarily white grain that has an enhanced overall nutrient density to chia grain. This superior new grain was named Salba Seed. The word "Salba" is a combination of Chia's botanical name "Salvia Hispanica L" and the Latin name for white, "Alba".
By 1994 Salba Seed was introduced in Columbia, and in 1997 further experimental crops were started in Bolivia and Peru. Because of the subtropical climate needed to grow the Salba Seed crops, they are now primarily cultivated under controlled conditions in the Amazon Basin located in Peru: one of the last bastions of unspoiled places in the world.
Salba Seed is grown using common agricultural techniques used for grain crops. It is sown mechanically and it is not treated chemically in any way prior to sowing. There are NO pesticides applied before or after harvest. Salba Seed is allowed to ripen naturally and then the grain is mechanically harvested using a modified grain combine harvester. Salba Seed is put through a strainer to eliminate any debris such as soil or stones.
Chia was the cornerstone in the diet of the Aztec empire. It was used by the Aztecs as a staple that sustained them on expeditions and in battle. Runners who carried messages throughout the immense Aztec kingdom relied on Salba for their nourishment. Chia played an important part in ceremonial pageants and rituals symbolizing enhanced vigor and longevity.
Salba Seed has been extensively researched by Dr. Vladimir Vuksan Associate Director of the Clinical Nutrition and Risk Factor and Modification Center at St. Michael's Hospital, University of Toronto, Canada, and Professor at the University of Toronto, Faculty of Nutritional Sciences, and Faculty of Medicine, Toronto. In randomized acute and long-term studies, the clinical results clearly document the great health potential of Salba Seed as a functional food, that can be used as a novel agent in the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular disease.
Salba Seed is the only food that holds a medical patent (60-274.256). The patent pertains to Salba Seed's ability to manage the effects of diabetes and the dietary approaches to such management. It is focused on methods of improving associated metabolic abnormalities, specifically with Salba Seed, and methods of use in these seeds in lowering blood pressure, blood glucose and post-prandial glycemia. Also it is associated with helping risk factors such as inflammatory factors (hi-C reactive protein), coagulation (fibrinogen, factor VIII, Von Willebrant and fibronolytic factors such as t-PA, iron status and endothelial function.
One Serving of Salba Seed = 12g and Contains:
|Calories||46||Dietary fibers||04.20 g|
|Calories from fat||37||Soluble fiber||00.42 g|
|Total fat||04.14 g||Insoluble fiber||03.70 g|
|Trans fat||0.00 g||Protein||02.60 g|
|Saturated fat||0.41 g||Vitamin A||01.60 IU|
|Polyunsaturated||3.50 g||Calcium||92.00 mg|
|Monounsaturated||0.23 g||Magnesium||46.00 mg|
|Total Carbohydrates||4.50 g||Iron||00.95 mg|
|Sugars||0.00 g||Thiamin||00.09 mg|
|Folate (Folic Acid)||10.00 mcg||Riboflavin||00.02 mg|
|Selenium||<00.01 mg||Copper||00.20 mg|
|Niacin||0.86 mg||Omega-3 Fatty Acid||02.50 g|
|Omega-6 Fatty Acid||0.76 g||Omega-9 Fatty Acid||00.25 g|
|Antioxidants Orac Value||840||-||-|