Nutritional facts of chia seeds…delicious raw tapioca pudding recipe
Seating on a Sack of Seeds
Sometimes when I begin to write a newsletter, I’m not sure what to write about. I like to pick interesting and enlightening topics, but other times I just sit and stare at the computer. During holiday seasons I enjoy writing about seasonal topics, but I realize the greatest gift I can give is the gift of health. And that is where this story of the sack of seeds comes along. Is it a traditional holiday story? No! But you will get the best gift of all if you try it, HEALTH!
Friday, about 10:45 a.m., I was pulling into the parking lot of Ironworks BBQ on Cesar Chavez. I get out the car and popped the truck and pull out a brown paper sack. As I’m setting the sack down, a friend comes up to me with money in hand. It felt like a drug deal as a group of three men were watching the exchange as they waited for Ironworks to open the doors.
The pass was eleven pounds of seeds, chia seeds.
In the past I’ve tried chia seeds in crackers and breads that I made, but wasn’t all that excited about them even though I knew the health benefits of these wonder seeds. So what changed? For seven years I’ve been a monthly regular at a rawfood potluck held at a dear friend’s house. Another of the monthly regulars brought a dish, raw Tapioca pudding made with chia seeds.
Oh my, that pudding was so good that it has started a chia seed revival through Austin. After finishing the chia seeds that I had stored in the freezer, I ordered 55 pounds of seeds. Yep, you can say I’m seating on a sack of seeds!
Chia is Mayan word for Strength. And ancient civilizations such as the Aztec, Mayan, Incas, and Apache consumed chia seeds as a main staple. It was known as a runner’s food, as well as carried by warriors during their conquests.
Here are some of the nutritional facts:
High in Zinc, Copper, Boron, Calcium, Protein
Helps the body to assimilate and use Calcium
Supports brain function
Essential fatty acids, Omega 3 and 6
Easily digestible protein, absorbs excess acid balancing ph
Increases energy, strength and endurance
Regulates insulin by leveling blood sugar
Induces weight loss, trimming the inches
Regenerates healthy tissue
Aids intestinal regularity
High in fiber, antioxidants, vitamins, minerals
This tiny seed absorbs 12 times its weight in water, which keeps the body hydrated.
Researchers believe the gel-forming phenomenon of the seeds takes place in the stomach, creating a physical barrier between carbohydrates and the digestive enzymes that break them down, thus slowing the conversion of carbohydrates into sugar.
This gives obvious benefits for diabetics, and because the slowing of sugar conversion this aids endurance. Nutrition researchers looking at chia have called it an “almost perfect food.”
In the book, The Magic of Chia by James Scheer, Mr. Scheer refers to many studies for the curious to learn more. One test that he refers to was performed by Paul Braggs (Braggs Amino Acids) a famous fitness guru who, by the way, died in a body surfing accident in 1976 at the age of 95.
Mr. Braggs was talking with a group of young people at his athletic club, Bragg asked them to name which foods gave them the most energy, vitality, and endurance. Bragg was the only one to name chia seeds, saying that he got his greatest “go” power from chia seeds. One of the young men responded, “Paul why don’t we test chia seeds some weekend?”
Thus the Paul Bragg began. He structured the experiment/competition as a grueling test of endurance, a thirty-six-hour hike to the top of Mount Wilson.
The volunteers were divided into two groups. Members of one group ate only chia seeds during the climb, and the others ate whatever foods they wished.
Bragg led the chia-eating group, eight men and four women, and chose another man to lead the eat-as-you-wish group. “‘We in the chia-eating group took several teaspoons of chia seed in water as soon as we arose,’ Bragg recalled. ‘During the entire outing, we chewed on chia seeds or took them in water.
“‘For the first few hours, there seemed to be no difference in our ability to climb. However, as the terrain grew rougher and the slopes steeper, things changed. Our chia-eating group started to pull ahead of the others.'”
Bragg’s group of chia eaters reached the peak four hours and twenty-seven minutes ahead of the other group of twelve. Only three men and two women of the other group actually finished.
Hopefully you can see why I’m so excited about such a tiny seed. Big things can arrive in small packages. I know that when many people think of chia, they think about the chia pet. Please don’t eat your chia pet.
The pudding keeps for two weeks in the frig, but you’ll probably have eaten long before two weeks. Harvesting the chia seeds occurs twice a year, summer and fall. So once the seeds are gone, it’ll probably be next summer. I ordered 55 lbs., and I have already sold 46 lbs, and I’ll probably have to order more this week. If you wish to order seeds, please let me know a.s.a.p. and note how many pounds. They’re $9 a pound or $40 for five pounds.
Last but not least I’d like to share the recipe that I use for making the delightful and strengthening pudding.
1 cup Chia Seeds
1 cup total combined raw nuts: almonds, walnuts & macadamias
¼ to ½ cup of organic shredded coconut
½ plus cups of agave nectar (stevia or maple syrup can be used)
1 tsp. Cinnamon
Pinch of good Salt (sea, celtic, redmond’s, red salt, etc.)
1. Place the almonds, walnuts and macadamias nut in a bowl and cover with good filtered water for 1-4 hours.
2. Put the chia seeds in a large mixing bowl (it must be able to hold 8-10 cups) and pour 6 cups of good filtered water over the seeds, and stir with a wire whisk. Stir a second time in another 15 minutes. This keeps the seeds from clumping.
3. After the nuts have soaked (referred to as activating), drain off the water, put the nuts in a blender along with the coconut, agave nectar, Vanilla, Cinnamon and salt. Add one cup of filtered water to the blender, and whirl on high for a couple of minutes until everything is a smooth milky consistency.
4. Pour the mixture into the bowl with the chia seeds and whisk until blended. And it is done!
5. Store in a glass jar in the frig.
I eat it for breakfast with sliced banana, and as a quick snack. Also if you know anyone with cancer or any other illness, this helps them with more strength during their challenge; remember chia seeds are gentle on the stomach, high in protein and easy to digest. Add a tablespoon of the gel to baby food. Babies love it. Just make is part of you and your family’s daily staple.
Now the part I must add, just consider it amusement: In no way has the statements written been approved by the FDA, AMA and/or other such agencies. And this is by no means for the purpose of diagnosing, treating, alleviating, mitigating, curing, preventing, or caring for “disease” in any way or manner whatsoever.
Okay, now that’s done: Here’s to a long, healthy and beautiful life. Eat well, love long and may God bless you with all that is Good,
May your Holiday season be filled with lots of hugs, love and blessings,