Chia seeds have been referred to as a “gift from the gods”. This statement is well justified, owing to the tremendous nutritive value of the seeds, as well as their unmatched versatility in consumption. The seeds have a natural mildly natural nutty taste, which blends well with many savoury dishes without spoiling the inherent flavour of the meal. If addition to these many advantages is the fact that if eating raw seeds is not your cup of tea, it can be incorporated in many recipes, or in beverages as needed. These are very good reasons why you should take a little time and familiarize yourself with the many culinary pleasures you may yet enjoy.

These are a few of the more common ways that Chia seeds are consumed today;

  • One of the most popular ways of consuming Chia seeds is being practiced by fitness enthusiasts and athletes. What this entails is adding the seeds to their morning protein rich beverage, either by means of a blender or a protein shaker mixing bottle. It is advisable if the latter is employed to allow the seeds to sit for a few minutes before drinking, so as to allow adequate absorbance of the liquid to guarantee a richly enjoyable experience.
  • Chia seeds also function as vital add ons to foods such as toast, oatmeal drinks or bars, fruits,  pancakes or even yoghurt, to fortify the meal and guarantee your adequate RDI of nutrients. Similarly, they may be added to the batter or dough to virtually any type of pancake, waffle or bread type product, much like the addition of wheat germ or sometimes rice bran. A good starting point is to add Chia seeds in the ratio of two tablespoons per cup of flour required.
  • Another good way to eat your Chia seeds is to incorporate them into vegetable or fruit salads, or adding to garnishes, or insanely popular today, adding them to pasta sauces to serve as thickening agents and promote the flow properties of the sauce. They are commonly substituted for sesame seeds, and do rightfully the same
  • Chia seeds can be made into the popular Mexican beverage called Fresca. It is generally very easy to make, requiring only 8-10 ounces of water, and two teaspoons of Chia seeds. If the concoction is bitter to taste, it can be sweetened by the addition of lime juice and sucrose (table sugar). Some people even substitute water completely with fruit juices, resulting in a wide array of flavours
  • Another one of the most common ways of consuming your Chia seeds is by soaking them in water. Chia is renowned for absorbing huge amounts of liquid; as much as three times its own weight, and very quickly, normally saturation is achieved in less than ten minutes. The resulting product is referred to as Chia “gel”, and following the simple recipe of  1/3 Chia seeds to two cups of water. Stir a bit then let settle. This snack may then be consumed whenever necessary, by simply eating a spoon or two makes a very satisfying in between meal snack.
  • Chia seeds may be consumed as drinks too; by simply adding them to a larger volume of water than compared to the gel formula, they can make a good rehydrating beverage. In fact, they can be added to any beverage you desire, be it fruit juices, iced tea or even coffee to enhance that rich nutty flavour. The preparation rule is basically the same for the gel, add the Chia seeds to the liquid and let settle. The only minor difference though, is that you neglect the step of letting it sit for ten minutes. Although commonly complemented with the above liquids, a handy trick is to deliberately let it sit for a while, then you will have created a delicious flavoured Chia gel. This gel may be stored in the refrigerator to delay its perishing.

With this virtually endless array of ways to enjoy your Chia seeds, it is also important to be realistic and eat wisely. The old age belief that more is better does not necessarily bode well with Chia seeds, given the fact that they are extremely calorie dense. Overconsumption is sure to make this weight loss marvel a nightmare, among other things.

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