How to use chia to reduce cravings and increase energy
Chia seeds are a nutrient-dense superfood derived from the Salvia Hispanica plant, native to Central and South America. They are small, black and grey seeds (resembling poppy seeds) with a mild nutty flavour that can be eaten raw or cooked.
When soaked in water, chia seeds form a gel-like substance which is often used as an egg replacer in vegan baking.
Chia seeds provide numerous health benefits and they are a great source of essential nutrients including omega-3 fatty acids, protein, calcium, magnesium and zinc.
Find out how chia seeds can benefit your health, ways they can be used and delicious chia seed recipes to cook at home.
Health benefits of chia seeds
- Packed with antioxidants to protect cells from damage and reduce the risk of certain illnesses and diseases.
- An excellent source of calcium and magnesium to keep bones and teeth strong and healthy, support heart health and maintain muscle and nerve function.
- Provides a quality source of protein to build and repair muscle tissue, anchor blood sugars and give you a sustained release of energy.
- Rich in fibre to help maintain a healthy digestive system and regulate blood sugar levels. Chia seeds are a great choice for diabetics.
- High in omega-3 fatty acids to help reduce inflammation and improve heart health.
- Good source of iron to keep red blood cells healthy and oxygenated which in turn improves energy levels and reduces fatigue.
- Reduces hunger and cravings due to the fibre and protein content in chia seeds. This can support healthy weight management and keep snacking at bay.
How to use chia seeds
Chia seeds are incredibly versatile and a great addition to any diet. They can be added to smoothies, oatmeal, cereal, yoghurt, salads and baked goods. Chia seeds can also be used to make energy bars, chia puddings and bliss balls.
To make a chia pudding, soak some chia seeds in water or plant-based milk overnight so they absorb as much of the liquid as possible. You can also add other ingredients such as berries, banana or desiccated coconut.
Chia seeds can also be used as a thickening agent for sauces and soups, as an egg replacement in vegan cooking, or to create a healthy alternative to breadcrumbs.
To make an egg replacer, soak the chia seeds in filtered water until a gel-like substance forms. The gelatinous texture is similar to the texture of egg, and it binds ingredients together in the same way egg does in a recipe.
Chia seed recipes
If you’re looking for a nutritious and delicious way to add more nutrition to your diet, chia seeds are an excellent option.
Here are some healthy chia seed recipes: