Chia pets… a parent’s perfect answer for a kid who keeps asking for a pet. They don’t have to go to the vet or be exercised. They only require water every few weeks. And best of all, they are good for your health!
OK, while the potted Chia Pets themselves won’t improve your health, the seeds, responsible for growing the famous Chia Pet “Afros”, have been used for centuries as a part of healthy diets. Essential Formulas loves Chia, so today we are going to scratch the surface and talk about the history of these power-packed seeds.
Formally known as Salvia hispancia, the Chia plant is categorized under the mint family and produces white or purple flowers that contribute to a high self-pollination rate. The plant is prominently grown for its seeds and their oil, since the seeds/oil contain 60% ALA Omega-3, an essential fatty acid required by the human body for good health. While Chia is rich in Omega-3, the other nutrients in the seeds contribute to boosting your general health as well. Chia seed oil is composed of 15-25% protein, 26-41% carbohydrates, 18-30% high dietary fiber, 90-93% vitamins and minerals, and a high amount of antioxidants. Adding to their popularity, Chia seeds are vegan and gluten free!
Now that we have told you about some of Chia seed oil’s overall health benefits, lets get down to its “roots.” For centuries, Chia seeds formed a part of the Aztecs of Mexico and the Indians of Southwest America’s staple diet.
At one time, the seeds were so highly valued that they were used as currency in these cultures! When going on a conquest, the Aztec warriors were said to eat Chia seeds because of their high energy supplementation. In fact, they would eat as little as a teaspoon to sustain them when going on a full 24-hour march. Talk about a little bit going a long way! Not only was Chia a main component of the Aztecs’ diet, but also of the Pre-Columbian Mayans. Interestingly, 500 years later, modern science has concluded that the Aztecs’ and Pre-Colombians’ diets were superior to present day diets. Although Chia seeds were an obscure ingredient for several centuries, they are now making their way into modern diets, offering a new opportunity to improve human nutrition by providing a natural source of omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, and dietary fiber.
Learn more about the Essential Formula’s Chia supplements here