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Thread: Chia seeds

  1. #1
    Registered User ckwolf's Avatar
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    Default Chia seeds

    has anyone tried these? I recall reading about native american runners using just a handful a day for long journeys?
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    They're suppose to be high in omega-3 and a bunch of other good stuff, but I did see this warning. http://www.chiaseeds.us/chia-seeds-side-effects.htm

    On a side note I purchase a very close relative, which is in the mint family, of this plant this year and suspect the seeds to be similar, but really haven't looked into what it would take to harvest them. The pollinators go absolutely crazy over this plant.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ckwolf View Post
    has anyone tried these? I recall reading about native american runners using just a handful a day for long journeys?
    It would be impossible for an ounce of anything to have more calories (i.e. energy) than an ounce of vegetable oil. One cup of oil is about 2000 calories. Not sure that would be enough every day for running a long journey.

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    Start date: March 13, 2012 Stats 2012's Avatar
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    I think they are great. I like to sprinkle them on a tortilla covered with my honey-butter-peanut butter concoction. The seeds give the snack a crunch, and I enjoy the taste of the seeds themselves. They swell an amazing amount when added to water, but become gooey and are unappetizing to me then. But in the stomach they swell up and are surprisingly filling.
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  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Odd Man Out View Post
    It would be impossible for an ounce of anything to have more calories (i.e. energy) than an ounce of vegetable oil. One cup of oil is about 2000 calories. Not sure that would be enough every day for running a long journey.
    I was thinking the same thing when I read over the nutritional value. I think it would be a great additive, but not too many calories, which is great normally, but not so great while hiking. http://www.mychiaseeds.com/NutritionFactsChia.html

  6. #6

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    The reason behind Chia and runners is that Chia pulls in moisture - meaning if you eat a Tablespoon of them they will bind with water and keep you hydrated longer. It does work - but you have to look at Chia as not calories but rather a side benefit. It is also a good source of cholesterol binders....for those wanting to watch their health a Tbsp. a day ground up fine added to oatmeal and you will have quite the punch. It also keep one well regulated if you get my drift.
    IMO though grinding them is best - then you don't get them in your gum line, which sucks. They swell up and then you have to pick them out (yuck). But unlike flax seeds, Chia does get processed if you eat it whole (Flax you have to grind to get the benefits).
    But yeah...more than a Tbsp a day and your body will probably punish you ;-)
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    Quote Originally Posted by sarbar View Post
    The reason behind Chia and runners is that Chia pulls in moisture - meaning if you eat a Tablespoon of them they will bind with water and keep you hydrated longer. It does work - but you have to look at Chia as not calories but rather a side benefit. It is also a good source of cholesterol binders....for those wanting to watch their health a Tbsp. a day ground up fine added to oatmeal and you will have quite the punch. It also keep one well regulated if you get my drift.
    IMO though grinding them is best - then you don't get them in your gum line, which sucks. They swell up and then you have to pick them out (yuck). But unlike flax seeds, Chia does get processed if you eat it whole (Flax you have to grind to get the benefits).
    But yeah...more than a Tbsp a day and your body will probably punish you ;-)
    Yeah, what I've read says they soak up 9x their mass in water. That alone kind of makes me want to go out and buy some. And then I'll go buy the plant

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    Doting Membrane Skidsteer's Avatar
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    Just don't spit the hulls on the trail.
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    Registered User bigmac_in's Avatar
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    . . .snort. . .
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    Quote Originally Posted by sarbar View Post
    The reason behind Chia and runners is that Chia pulls in moisture - meaning if you eat a Tablespoon of them they will bind with water and keep you hydrated longer. It does work - but you have to look at Chia as not calories but rather a side benefit. It is also a good source of cholesterol binders....for those wanting to watch their health a Tbsp. a day ground up fine added to oatmeal and you will have quite the punch. It also keep one well regulated if you get my drift.
    Not a significant source of calories - Agreed. Cholesterol binding and promotes regularity - reasonable, due to the soluble fiber. A source of essential fatty acids - no problem.

    But keeping you hydrated? I don't see that. If you eat them dry, they will soak up water in your gut. If you eat them hydrated, you get 9 times their mass (that's less than 1/2 cup of water for a tablespoon). Just drink water if you need to be hydrated. Furthermore, you don't get dehydrated from losing water in you gut (unless you have cholera). You get dehydrated from perspiration, and we are talking liters of water you loose, not 1/2 cup. Along with the hydration claims, I also saw reference to preserving your electrolytes. Same with the water, you loose those through perspiration. Chia seeds in your gut are not going to stop that. There are many "super foods" but the wild claims just don't add up.

    But you could spread them on your head and grow a head of hair like "Chia Obama".

  11. #11

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    The key is drinking them with water....many of the chia freaks add them to water, let them swell and then chug it. It is kind of like making chia pudding - http://gazingin.com/2011/05/04/raw-food-chia-pudding/ (That is my personal website). Anyhow, the swelled up seeds keep one feeling full and the seeds digest nicely - so the theory being that your body isn't taking away anymore fluids to digest it. Yeah, I don't fully buy it but hey, if it makes people happy...they can go for it ;-)

    Having said that I did manage to cut both mine and my husband's cholesterol numbers in half in 3 months by a near vegan diet that was heavy in flax and chia. One thing though is that Chia does actually have a pretty good dose of fat as well....it isn't as low in calories as one might think.....
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    Very interesting

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    Quote Originally Posted by sarbar View Post
    ....many of the chia freaks add them to water, let them swell and then chug it. ....
    Hey, I do that! Chia, sugar, lime juice, water. Mmm mmm good! Fun too, and a great conversation starter.

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    Registered User Northern Lights's Avatar
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    We eat Chia seeds every day, mix them in smoothies, put them in cereal and oatmeal. Anything really.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sarbar View Post
    T... Anyhow, the swelled up seeds keep one feeling full and the seeds digest nicely - so the theory being that your body isn't taking away anymore fluids to digest it. Yeah, I don't fully buy it but hey, if it makes people happy...they can go for it ;-)..... One thing though is that Chia does actually have a pretty good dose of fat as well...
    Keep you full - I can buy that

    Digest Nicely - Yes

    Full of fats - yes, as are many seeds (this is why most of the vegetable oils in the grocery store come from seeds - peanuts, corn, sesame, olives, canola, etc...)

    Body isn't taking away fluids to digest it??? The initial reaction to digest complex carbohydrates will always consume one water molecule for each sugar produced. It is a hydrolysis reaction (splitting with water). The same is true for every amino acid released from a protein and every fatty acid released from a fat/oil. The fact that the seed is coated with a hydrophilic polysaccharide doesn't change that. However when food is catabolized, it PRODUCES produce a lot of water - about 6 water molecules produced for every sugar and amino acid catabolized. Much more for each fatty acid molecule. Your metabolism isn't taking fluids away. You loose fluids through perspiration needed to cool the body, since all that water producing, oxygen consuming, chia digesting metabolism makes a lot of heat. Putting a few grams of slime in your gut won't change that.

    If it makes people happy, they can go for it - Absolutely by all means enjoy eating healthy foods!

  16. #16

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    This thread made me so curious I decided to go out and try some. My local health food store had them.

    I have found "chia pudding" to be very good when flavored with frozen fruit, such as strawberries, blackberries, or raspberries. If you've ever made preserves out of these fruits and strained out the seeds, well that's my best description as to what chia pudding looks and tastes like. My recipe is just seeds, water, fruit, and sugar mixed together til it "looks right" and let to sit in the fridge overnight.

  17. #17

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    I think I will try these. I first saw "chia" and thought this was a thread about chia pets.

  18. #18

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    I typed in the words Chia Obama and picked up a virus - screen went blank. I'm running AVG. Anybody know how this could happen?
    As I live, declares the Lord God, I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that the wicked turn back from his way and live. Ezekiel 33:11

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    Btw, if you can't find chia seeds (buy organic!) lcoally, Amazon carries quite a few good choices. Bobs Red Mill is now selling them as well.
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    I like chia seeds a lot, and from what I see on line (http://www.mychiaseeds.com/NutritionFactsChia.html). The caloric density is 6.8/gram (protein 4/g, oil 9/g). I don't think this caloric density is bad at all. A clif bar for example only has a CD of 3.5. Walnuts have a CD of 6.5.

    What am I missing here? These seem like the perfect food to add to your hiking diet. Plus if you pack them loosely the'll fit just about anywhere.

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