The Truth About the Chia Seed: Increased Endurance and More
The chia seed comes from the desert plant Salvia hispanica, which grows in southern Mexico. Five hundred years ago it was an important part of the Aztec diet. It is known that the Aztecs referred to the seed as running food because a handful provided enough energy to run all day. Chia seeds were also used medicinally to treat skin conditions and joint pain.
Today, the chia seed has gained much attention because of its manyhealth benefits. In fact, the seed is so nutritious that it couldbe eaten exclusively and still make you healthier than ever before. Itcontains a total of nineteen amino acids. The protein in a chia seed isof a higher quality than that found in soy, peas or beans, it has ahigher level of vitamin C than oranges, more omega - 3 fatty acidsthan flax seed, more iron than spinach, more calcium than milk, morepotassium than bananas and more antioxidants than blueberries. Othernutrients include copper, magnesium, phosphorus, manganese, zinc andniacin. It is also loaded with antioxidants which include myricetin,chlorogenic acid, caffeic acid, myricetin and quercetin. The chia seed doesnot go bad so they can be stored for long period of time. It is lowin sodium and is cholesterol and gluten free.
The chia seed is rich in soluble fiber and is able to absorb up to ten times its weight in water. This is highly beneficial because it slows digestion, stabilizing blood sugar and prolonging the feeling of fullness, which is important to control food cravings and manage weight effectively. Another benefit to slow digestion is the gradual release of glucose into the bloodstream which promotes stamina and endurance throughout the day. Finally, the chia seeds ability to absorb water promotes overall hydration and electrolyte retention. It is also effective at lowering blood sugar, reducing gastro-esophageal reflux disease, improving symptoms of diabetes, lowering blood pressure, improving colon health, increasing endurance and energy and improving heart health.
There are several ways you can eat the chia seed. It makes a great addition to any food because it doesn't distort flavor. Sprinkle the seeds on salads, cereals, soups, oatmeal or yogurt. You can even eat them whole and enjoy their pleasant, nutty flavor. Or they can be ground up and mixed with flour to make bread or baked goods or just about anything you like. The chia seed is either white or black. In North America a number of companies have been marketing the white seed but there is no difference in nutritional value between the black and white seed. Be aware when shopping for the chia seed that some companies are selling the it at unreasonable prices because of its present popularity. You can find chia seeds at your local natural foods or health store.