Remember Chia Pets?
I got two for my birthday when I was in 7th grade. From two separate friends. Sitting around my birthday party table, I looked from one to the other as they were laughing. I couldn't figure out if I 1) was being punk'd and nobody would fess up, or 2) if they were laughing that they had the same idea because it was so cool. I wasn't as excited as they were about it. But, it's the thought that counts!
So chia seeds surprisingly have incredible nutritional value. The gel like sacs that formed when you poured water on them and spread them over your cat (head, dog, rabbit, turtle, whatever kind of weird pet you had), actually helps you to feel full for hours. When the chia seed is exposed to water, it forms the coating of gel, increasing in size and weight. Since the gel is made of water, it has no calories. It also has high levels of Omega-3. Since I am a vegan, this is a great way for me to receive the heart-healthy benefit. By weight, chia has more Omega-3 than salmon! In one ounce of chia seeds, you get: 11g of fiber, 4g of protein, and 18% of calcium.
You don't need to buy a chia pet to experience these benefits. Although, if you desire to do so, I will not stop you. They sell chia seeds at most health food stores (I got mine from my Whole Foods).
Long story short, here is what's in my Green Monster today:
1 1/2 c almond milk
2 handfulls spinach
1 frozen banana
1/2 c raspberries
1 T almond butter
1 T chia seeds
YUM! Enjoy & TGIF!