Legend says that the ancient Mayas and Incas consumed a seed that helped them to cross mountains without getting tired. And this is the same seed that distance runners and athletes consume nowadays. We call this humble-looking seed as chia.
Science says that we need vitamins and minerals to perform at our best. And because our daily food became stripped of the right nutrients, we compensate by taking vitamins and supplements. But what if we have superfoods that have vast amounts of proteins and minerals packed in small seeds? Wouldn’t it be better to consume it instead of taking synthetic multivitamins?
That’s where superfoods come in handy. Chia is one such super seed and is fast becoming a favorite by athletes and health enthusiasts alike. When a decade ago most people would shun chia seeds as another “birdseed”, now people are taking notice.
Chia Seeds for Sustained Energy
Who needs expensive and sugary energy bars when you can gulp water infused with chia seeds? Bodybuilders and runners take chia seeds daily for a reason. That’s because chia seeds are a mighty protein and energy source.
Consuming a chia seed at breakfast gives you stable and robust energy. If coffee can provide you with high and low energy, chia seeds take the mid-road. With chia seeds, you can comfortably work for hours and then work out after office without feeling beat up. You’ll have less and less energy-sapping highs and troughs if you’ll take chia consistently.
Health Benefits of Chia Seeds
As mentioned, chia seeds help you to feel full longer. It also sustains your energy for longer stretches of hours without feeling fatigued. How did chia seeds do that? Well, part of that is because of its whole grains. Like a time-release capsule, the seeds take time to digest once inside the tummy. That means you won’t feel hunger for hours while at the same time have enough fuel to keep you going.
Chia Seeds Fiber Content
Immerse your chia seeds on water, and you will see it swell in volume. That’s because chia seeds absorb water. Part of that clear gelatinous coating is fiber. Chia seeds have a lot of fiber. And because of that fiber component, it helps you to flush out debris from your gut. The fiber on chia seeds also helps you to have a regular bowel movement. But as a safety reminder, one must not eat chia seeds fresh out of the packet. You must immerse it on water for at least an hour before eating it.
Chia Seeds Anti-Inflammatory Benefits
There’s another reason why athletes swear by chia seeds. That’s because of its anti-inflammatory capabilities. You can run a marathon or cycle for hours; you’ll recover faster if you are fueling with chia seeds throughout. Feel less fatigued and see your sore muscles feel less stiff faster by consuming chia seeds. This humble superfood will help you to go the distance and cross the finish line in a stronger state.
How to Make Chia Seeds a Part of Your Diet
Chia seeds are flavorless. There’s hardly any plant-based taste except the nutty crunch that you will experience once you chew it. Because its bland, you can add chia seeds to just about any food. Here are some ways I add chia seeds into my daily diet:
- Sprinkle into oats
- Blend into your daily smoothies
- Add a pinch to your water bottle and drink throughout the day
- Mix with fruits and milk
- Soak overnight with milk, honey and nuts for a quick and delicious chia pudding
Chia seeds gives athletes a clean and healthy fuel for endurance and stamina. If this is your first time to try chia seeds, my advice is to take small quantities at first. See if your body can take it. A teaspoon per day is already good enough for beginners. Once your body got used to it, you can increase your intake. And as always, let food be thy medicine.