The magic of Chia….!

Very rarely do I write about products.  I’m not particularly interested in endorsing things and that is not what this blog is about, but on the occasion that I discover something that has the potential to genuinely enhance peoples health then I feel that it is right to share it.

Chia seeds

Chia seeds

As part of National Breakfast Week, I was contacted by the lovely people at The Chia Co. who offered to send me some of their new chia products to try.  I already use chia seeds regularly in my smoothies but hadn’t ventured further than these so was keen to see what else they had been working hard to develop.  I was delighted to return home to a beautifully packaged box, crammed full of chia seeds, chia oil and sachets of the new instant chia seed porridge sachets in a variety of flavours.

The box of Chia goodies

The box of Chia goodies

Now Chia seeds could, to most of us, sound like they fall into the fad category; a funny name, fairly expensive to buy and amazing healthy claims.  As such I was probably a little slower to catch on than some but I have to say that these things are no fad.  Genuinely packed full of omega 3 fatty acids, fibre and protein not to mention minerals too, these really are powerhouses of health!  Yes they are fairly expensive to buy but when you consider the ‘cost per nutrient’ so to speak, they become far better value.  Not only that but they are extremely versatile.  The seeds are essentially tasteless so I add them to my smoothies for a protein boost and some extra fibre and omega 3s but I don’t taste them.  You can stir them into soups, yoghurts, salads, sauces – anything – and there is no nutritional difference between the white and the black seeds.  I tend to go for white simply because they look a little bit less peculiar than the black ones should I happen to end up with any stuck to my teeth (a word of warning there!).

On from the seeds, I have been trying the chia oil which, I must say is brilliant.  Not for cooking with but great drizzled over salads, soups, porridge, mashed avocado on toast….literally anything.  Again, it is tasteless so packs a nutritional punch without altering the flavour of your dish at all.  If you need to take extra omega 3 supplements but struggle taking fish oil capsules then this is something to look at.

Finally the porridge sachets.  Now if I am honest I didn’t have high hopes for these as traditionally the instant flavoured sachets tend to be very sweet, very artificial and basically not very nice.  I am however pleased that I was proved totally wrong.  I loved them!  They were so filling that I got to 2pm without a single hunger pang (quite incredible for me) and best of all they are not sweet.  I tried all flavours; berry, apple and a banana one and liked them all.  Apple was my favourite but there wasn’t much in it.  For a quick breakfast (and these really are instant as in empty sachet into bowl, stir in boiling water and eat) with no mess I would struggle to beat these and really recommend that if you are looking for a healthy filling and sustaining breakfast that will take seconds to prepare then try these out.

 

Kale and sweet potato warm salad with tahini dressing

Kale and sweet potato warm salad with tahini dressing

Lunch today (see the lovely photo!) is drizzled with chia oil (made into a tahini dressing) and my morning smoothie was packed full of them too.  In short chia seeds are one of those ‘new’ foods well worth a try.  I’m all about keeping things simple and accessible to all and yes the seeds are costly but sometimes it is worth investing in yourself a little.  I always try to put food prices in context – many of us wouldn’t bat an eyelid at paying £6.00 for a glass of wine or a cocktail so why not have one less glass of wine and you have effectively bought yourself a good supply of chia seeds which not only enhances your health but will last a lot longer than 45minutes.

Give them a go – I will do a few posts on chia seeds in the coming months as there is quite a lot you can do with them in terms of delicious deserts as they have some unique properties so watch this space but for now, go and have a try and let me know how you get on!

Faith