These microscopic powerhouses, called Chia Seeds, are finally re-surfacing into the food & health world, are only 2 mm long!
2 Tb. of Chia seeds contain approximately 11 grams of fiber & 5 grams of protein!
They're a beneficial healthy fat (just like other nuts & seeds) & are rich in calcium, phosphorus, zinc, copper, & manganese.
They're high in omega-3 fatty acids, which help ward off illness, cancer, arthritis, heart disease, etc... They're also known to aid in digestion & lowering cholesterol.
Unlike flax seeds, Chia seeds do NOT need to be ground up before using to benefit from their nutrients. (Most people don't realize that whole flax seeds do not digest. They go right through you. - Which makes me get a little confused when I see them incorporated 'whole' into granolas & cereals at the grocery store...)
When Chia seeds are soaked, they absorb the water & form a gelatinous coating that's kinda fun to play with in your mouth!
Soaking chia seeds for about 10 minutes before consuming prevents them from absorbing water from your body during digestion and causing dehydration. But if you're sprinkling just a bit on a salad or into a smoothie, don't worry about it too much :) You can always drink a little extra water, if you need too...
These little guys are making their way into ice cream, smoothie, & yogurt shops. My first experience like this was on top of frozen yogurt at Kiwi Loco in Idaho. I was instantly addicted to playing with the gelatin coating that formed after soaking up the moisture from the yogurt.
I'm a little bit addicted to Chia seeds! I use them in breads, smoothies, sauces, ice-cream, salads, pasta dishes, soups, dips, crackers, on fruits & veges, casseroles, you name it! They're AWESOME!
You can even grind them up into Chia flour with a coffee grinder. :o)
Take a minute to google Chia recipes, & you'll find loads of them!
Here are a couple of fun healthy(er) dessert ideas to try: