A couple of months ago, I finally added chia seeds to my array of supplements. My vegan friend always makes these awesome chia seed smoothies for me during my stay in Brooklyn, and I was dying to buy them so I could replicate. When I hit up the VegFest in NYC I had to do a happy dance when I was able to get a large bag from Nutiva for five bucks! Awesome deal! I started to delve further into the nutritional value of chia seeds, and discovered that they were a great addition to my post workout smoothies because of the easily absorbable protein they provide.
Chia seeds are native to Southern Mexico and Guatemala, and are from a species of flowering plant that is in the mint family. In pre-Columbia times, chia was a staple in Aztec and Mayan diets and even used as a survival ration. The seeds are rich in omega-3′s even more so than flaxseed, and they offer a great dose of nutrients including: calcium, phosphorous, magnesium, potassium etc. In addition as I mentioned already, they are a good source of protein, antioxidants, and dietary fiber. Based on a 2,000 calorie diet, 1 oz of chia seeds provide 9% of the Daily Recommended Value for protein and 42% dietary fiber. The protein from chia seeds are easily digested and absorbed very quickly by the body which helps with muscle regenration and makes it ideal for body builders, athletes, and vegan workout junkies like myself . Chia seeds also have three to ten times the oil content of most grains, and provide the body with good fats.
Beyond just the fabulous nutritional properties, chia seeds can be used as remedies for wounds. In Mexico and South America these super seeds have been used to treat wounds, including those from a gun shot! Eating chia seeds regularly can assist in lower blood pressure and glucose levels and their energizing quality can also give you an energy boost that will have you zipping productively through the day. Also because of their filling properties and nice dose of fiber, chia seeds can be an aid to those looking to slim down. Sound good? Well if so, the great news is you can receive the nutrition from the seeds without grinding them. To add to a smoothie let set in water or in the liquid used for the smoothie for a minimum of 5 minutes, and it will blend easily. Or you can let the seeds sit in pure water for 30 minutes, and it will form a gel that can then be scooped out and added to smoothies, puddings, etc. So, if you’re looking for another great supplement to add to post-workout smoothies, or just another veggie protein source, look no further than ch-ch-ch-chia seeds! -XoXo Raw Girl
Today’s Mid-day Post-Workout Smoothie (this is very yummy, and provides me with a nice dose of protein from the hemp,chia, spinach, and superfood blend): 1 Thai coconut (water and meat), 2 bananas, 1 cup blueberries, small handful spinach, Tablespoon of chia seeds (soaked for 5 minutes in blender with coconut water) , Hemp Protein powder, My Favorite Cacao Superfood Powder (awesome has everything in from spirulina to maca to probiotics and tastes, for real like chocolate)