Ch-Ch-Ch-Chia is the trendiest seed in Hollywood.
This seed first gained super-healing kudos as early as 3500 B.C., and were one of the diet mainstays of the Aztecs and Mayans. Now, this ancient seed is having its modern day in the sun.
Health-conscious stars like Gwyneth Paltrow, Miranda Kerr, Oprah and Dr. Oz are all fans -- giving this seed major celebrity status. This nutty-tasting whole grain is a nutrient powerhouse! These little black and white seeds don't look like much, but they're packed with omega-3 fatty acids, are high in fiber and loads of antioxidants and vitamins. Let's bring on the chia!
The folks at Chia Co gave Healthy Hollywood five reasons you may want to add chia to your daily diet.
Increase energy levels: Chia provides a sustained release of energy into body. Increase fiber in the diets: Chia naturally contains 37% fiber; 80% insoluble and 20% soluble, which can have a positive effect on intestinal health, including regular gut function. Weight Management: When added to foods Chia Seeds have the effect of thickening or bulking which may lead to a full sensation, this can result in low calorie intake over the day. Heart Health: Chia contains 20% Omega 3 ALA, which studies show can help lower cholesterol, maintain artery function and reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. Healthy skin, hair, and nails: Chia contains a high source of Omega 6LA, antioxidants and protein which are all important for healthy skin.
So, how do you use Chia? The seeds can be sprinkled on salads, breakfast cereal or added to soups; blended into smoothies; or baked into a variety of recipes.
Chia Co, which is the world's largest producer of quality Chia seeds and has a variety of products from packaged Chia seeds to cold-pressed Chia oil. Their website also offers numerous Chia recipes from smoothies to baked goods to entrées. Chia Co shared with Healthy Hollywood a few of their Chia recipes on their website.
Chia Crusted Salmon
1/2 cup chopped parsley 1 tsp. lemon grated zest 1 cup black chia seeds 1 tsp. salt & pepper (or to taste) 4 salmon fillets (skin removed) 2 tbsp. olive oil
Place parsley, lemon zest, chia seeds, salt and pepper in a blender and blend for 30 to 60 seconds. Remove from blender and set aside.
Brush the filets with reserved oil and divide the crust mixture evenly between fillets, sprinkling over the top of each and press down gently to secure. Place the fillets in a baking dish lined with baking paper and rubbed with 1 tsp. oil and bake covered in 350-degrees oven for about 6 to 10 minutes. Then uncover and continue baking for 2 to 3 minutes or until cooked to your liking.
Sprinkle with a little more salt and pepper and serve with parsley leaves and lemon wedges.
Chia Green Smoothie
1.5 cup milk of your choice 1/2 cup apple or pineapple juice 1 - 2 tbsp honey 1 banana, chopped 1/2 cup chopped mango or pineapple 1 cup packed spinach and/or kale 2 tbsp. green powder 1 tbsp. black chia seeds 1 tbsp. chia oil (optional) 1 tbsp. chia bran (optional)
Place all ingredients in a blender and blend on high for 1 to 2 minutes. Check to taste if more sweetener or liquid is needed and blend again. Serve immediately and sprinkle with chia seeds.
For more Chia Seed recipes, check out www.thechiaco.com.au.
-- Terri MacLeod
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