Organic Chia Seeds
Chia as a Garden Plant
Chia seeds are so tiny that simply covering them with soil is a sufficient planting method! Chia plants are hardy and grow well in zones 8-11; full sun and good draining soil are essential for healthy plants. Chia seeds need light watering as they grow, thin out the plants to avoid overcrowding. Chia plants are known as a “fire following” plant, meaning that they are some of the first plants to spring up after wildfires; as such, they are tolerant to drought! Additionally, chia seed plants are self-pollinating, they are truly a low-maintenance plant.
Chia seeds can be used in many dishes that are both sweet and savory. When chia seeds come into contact with water, they absorb nearly 10x their weight and expand greatly, because of this binding ability they can be used as an egg substitute in vegan baking. Mix chia seeds into your morning porridge, yogurt, or granola. They can even be combined with milk and stored in the fridge overnight to make a delicious chia seed pudding for breakfast. Chia seeds can be grown as microgreens and used in salads, soups, and sandwiches.
- Breakfast foods
- Chia pudding
- Egg substitute
Chia seeds, Salvia hispanica, come from a flowering mint plant that is native to Guatemala and Mexico. Chia seeds were lauded for their health benefits in the Mayan and Aztec diets. Athletes from both cultures claimed that chia seeds allowed them to perform feats of strength, the word ‘chia’ literally means strength in the Mayan language. Runners and warriors would consume them before long runs or before battle as they were an excellent fuel source. The Mexican tribe, Tarahumara, is famous for their runners and they attribute their endurance and success to consuming chia seeds beforehand!
Chia seeds are a functional food because, in addition to providing nutrition, they also are believed to help prevent cardiovascular disease and increase satiety. Although there is no magic pill form of food, incorporating these nutrient-dense functional foods regularly often result in great benefits for those consuming them. A serving of chia seeds, around two tablespoons, yields about 140 calories, grams of protein, and 11 grams of fiber. Chia seeds are rich in omega-3 fatty acids which support cardiovascular and brain health. Chia seeds are surprisingly high in protein, with just 1 serving yielding 18% of your daily value for calcium!