Chia: Tiny Seed with a Powerful Health Punch (continued)
Adding chia to your diet
There are many ways to incorporate these healthy seeds into your diet. Chia seeds look like a cross between sesame and poppy seeds and have almost no flavor. When mixed with liquid, they turn into a gel that can be used in smoothies or mixed into casseroles and other dishes. To make chia gel, Gloria Hoover, author of Cooking With Chia (Geomantha, 2007), recommends mixing one ounce of chia seeds into eight ounces of water in a sealable plastic or glass container. Stir with a fork or wire whisk, let sit for a 10 minutes, then stir again. The gel can be stored for up to two weeks in the refrigerator.
The seeds can also be toasted, which stops the gelling process, and can be used in baking or sprinkled on salads or yogurt. Hoover recommends toasting the seeds in a small skillet over high heat for two minutes. Store in an airtight container. Chia also is sold in oil form at health food stores, which can be used on salads or as a dietary supplement. Since it's high in omega-3 fatty acids, chia oil will oxidize when heated, so it should not be cooked or used in baking.
And, of course, chia can also be sprouted and eaten. Since it turns into a gel when mixed with liquid, it can only be sprouted on clay, such as a Chia Pet. However, Chia Pets are not FDA-approved as a food, so you might prefer to sprout seeds from the health food store. If you take insulin or any diabetes medication, talk to your doctor before taking any dietary supplement. If you get the ok, be sure to carefully test your blood sugar as you begin adding chia to your diet. It could affect your blood glucose levels and require an adjustment in your prescription.Check out these recipes using chia seeds!
Chia Breakfast Smoothie -- made with cereal, yogurt, and banana
Chia Quinoa Salad -- a tabouleh-like salad with green onions and lemon.
Salmon Cakes -- baked simply with an extra health punch.
Skillet Squash -- squash and cheddar cheese melty goodness!
EDITOR'S NOTE: This article was updated 7/11, with additional reporting by Karen Berman.
Reviewed by Susan Weiner, R.D., M.S., C.D.E., C.D.N.10/08
Surveys Find Adults with Type 2 Diabetes Are More Willing to Take Action to Achieve A1C Targets Quicker than Physicians and Other Medical Professionals Perceive
FDA Votes to Change Jardiance Label to Show Reduction in Heart-Related Deaths
Low Carb vs. High Carb II – My Diabetes Diet Battle Continued
Broccoli and Spaghetti Soup Beet Salad with Sesame Vinagrette Ginger-Sesame Dressing Tangy Marinated Salmon Fillets Mulled Rosy Cider Pork Diane Broiled Mushroom Caps Mediterranean Bean Dip North African Spiced Soup Chicken Sausage and Grits
There are two reasons it took me as long as it did to "come out" publicly with diabetes (and hypertension). One was denial: in my mind, I was too young to have type 2 diabetes — a condition I only knew in people over the age of 55 — and the other was fear of public shaming. Turn back the clock several years before my own diagnosis. Our workplace was a bit more stratified, with two editors above me. The elder of the two was somewhat overweight and, like many...