The Nutritionally Dense Food of the Future
Introduction to Chia
Part 1of 5
By Paul E
As a researcher in the field of nutrition I have tried frequently to find the most simple and inexpensive way to provide our bodies with foods that are dense in nutrition and have the ability to sustain us in the smallest quantities.
My motto is not “you are what you eat” but “we are what we absorb and assimilate”.
Our bodies are equipped to combat the onset of illness and disease. It only needs our cooperation in supplying proper hydration and the needed nutrients to effectively maintain an environment of well-being.
Because the question of what might be the optimum diet can, at times, be emotionally challenging and confusing, I truly believe we must keep it simple and direct from nature as best as we can.
Yes, this is challenging, especially for those living in urban areas. It is very difficult to get access to whole foods and optimum quality. I, for one, have this challenge and have decided to consume the best of the best in super foods that are simple to work with and taste good.
In my journey, I have come across many super foods but one, for me, is the leader of them all because of its density in nutrition, low cost, and flexibility when using it in our daily lifestyle.
I would like to introduce you to a “super” food that I strongly feel is a food that will be here to stay for a long time. Today I will introduce the history of this amazing food in part one of my 5 part series:
It is the Salvia Hispanica L. seed, known as Chia Seed, valued by the Native Americans and aborigine peoples of Central and South America. Once valued so much that it was used as currency, this unique little seed has exceptional nutritive and structural benefits.
Chia, familiar to most of us as a seed used for the novelty of the Chia Pet TM, clay animals with sprouted Chia seeds covering their bodies. Little is known, however, of the seed's tremendous nutritional value and medicinal properties. For centuries this tiny little seed was used as a staple food by the Indians of the south west, central, and South America. Known as the running food, it's use as a high energy endurance food has been recorded as far back as the ancient Aztecs. It was said the Aztec warriors subsisted on the Chia seed during their conquests. The Indians of the south west would eat as little as a teaspoon full when going on a twenty-four hour forced March. Indians running from the Colorado River to the California coast to trade turquoise for sea shells would bring only the Chia seed for their nourishment.
When I first heard of this, I was truly amazed and needed to hear more about this amazing seed because I was in search for something that the body can utilize in small quantities and give us the greatest benefit.
I was able to interview one of the top researchers of Chia seed, William Anderson, and here is some of the information and data he shared with me about the usage of Chia.
If you try mixing a spoonful of Chia in a glass of water and leaving it for approximately 20 minutes or so, when you return the glass will appear holding, not seeds or water, but an almost solid gelatin. This gel-forming reaction is due to the soluble fiber of the seeds. Researchers believe this same gel-forming phenomenon takes place in the stomach when food containing these gummy fibers, known as mucilage, are eaten. The gel that is formed in the stomach creates a physical barrier between carbohydrates and the digestive enzymes that break them down, thus slowing the conversion of carbohydrates into sugar. In addition to the obvious benefits for diabetics, as it stabilizes blood sugar, this slowing in the conversion of carbohydrates into sugar offers the ability for creating endurance. Carbohydrates are the fuel for energy in our bodies. Prolonging their conversion into sugar stabilizes metabolic changes, diminishing the surges of highs and lows, creating a longer duration in their fueling effects.
One of the exceptional qualities of the Chia seed is its hydrophilic properties, having the ability to absorb more than 12 times its weight in water. It's ability tohold on to water offers the ability to prolong hydration. Fluids and electrolytes provide the environment that supports the life of all the body’s cells. Their concentration and composition are regulated to remain as constant as possible.
With Chia seeds, you retain moisture, regulating more efficiently, the body’s absorption of nutrients and body fluids. Because there is a greater efficiency in the utilization of body fluids, the electrolyte balance is maintained.
Example: Fluid and electrolyte imbalances occur when large amounts of fluids are lost resulting from vomiting, diarrhea, high fever, or more commonly from sweating! The loss of extra cellular fluid occurs in these conditions.
Intercellular fluid then shifts out of cells to compensate, causing abnormal distribution of electrolytes across cell membranes resulting in cellular malfunction. So, retaining and efficiently utilizing body fluids maintains the integrity of extra-cellular fluids, protecting intercellular fluid balance. The results of which ensure normal electrolyte dispersion across cell membranes (electrolyte balance), maintaining fluid balances, resulting in normal cellular function.
As you can see, Chia has a very interesting history and has tremendous potential and benefits. I have also provided a very simple recipe for Chia Oatmeal Porridge, one of many Chia Seeds Recipes.
Paul E is writer and researcher in the many areas of Nutrition, organization and efficient lifestyles. He has over 20 years experience in Pharmaceuticals, Nutraceuticals and Efficiency management. He is also an author of several books and articles and the founder of Carlyle Collection Publishing. Please ask about his 10 week program KISS Keep It Sustain ably Simple that is designed to help individuals implement a healthy and more organized lifestyle. Paul can be reached at Carlylecollect@aol.com
Chia Hot Porridge
Tablespoon of Chia seed
5 tablespoons of Organic Oats
½ of one Banana sliced
½ teaspoon of Cinnamon
Pinch of sea salt
1 tablespoon of agave nectar
5 chopped walnuts
1 ounce of coconut milk optional
Bring one cup of water to a boil; add all ingredients to water; continue stirring for about 5 minutes or until you get nice texture. Serve and pour over with coconut milk.
Recipe by Paul E
More chia seed recipes.
One pound of chia seeds would make 24 cups of gel once hydrated which if you took the recommended dose of three tablespoons three times a day of the gel it would last you over a month. I recommend to my customers to just use 1/3 cups of seeds and put in two cups of water and whisk to hydrate then place in fridge. It will last three weeks.
Take out as
needed and then when that is gone then hydrate more seeds. Once a day
you can take One tablespoon of the raw seeds and put them in water or
juice prior to workout or physical activity or for appetite control and
weight loss. We offer bulk chia seeds in 1/2lb, 1lb, 5lb, and 55lb
bags. We show large images of chia on our store site so you can see the
individual seeds in the bag. We
have quality chia seeds at the best price! We do not hide our chia
seeds behind a can or a label. We also use large pictures on our store
site, so you can see what you will get.
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