Chia is an edible seed that comes from the desert plant "Salvia hispanica", that belongs to the mint family and is popularly grown in Mexico. "Chia" means strength, and folklore has it that these cultures used the tiny black and white seeds as an energy booster. It was largely unknown until researcher Wayne Coates began studying chia as an alternative crop for farmers in northern Argentina about 29 years ago. His research found anecdotal evidence of chia's positive health effects like boosting energy, stabilizing blood sugar, digestive aid and lowering cholesterol. Today, it is considered as a super food.
Soaked chia seeds is the most common way to consume them. They can absorb a large amount of liquid. Sprinkle them over salads or rice dishes. For a gluten-free option, grounded chia seeds can be used to replace all-purpose flour for baking. Use them in cakes and cookies. Typically small ovals, chia seeds may be brown-black or white. Both are known to have a similar nutritional content.
1. Good for diabetics: Chia seeds help in regulating blood sugar levels in the body and also fight insulin resistance.
2. Weight loss: They are a great source of dietary fiber. This makes it perfect as an energy food that helps in keeping you full for longer and supports weight loss.
3. Chia seeds are packed with omega-3 fatty acids.
4. A serving of chia seeds has 18 per cent of the recommended daily intake for calcium.