THe power of Chia
Chia is well known as an endurance food that nourishes your cells and tissues by prolonging hydration, slowly releasing nutrients, regulating glandular activity of the adrenals and thyroid, and providing electrolyte balance. In fact, the Aztec and Mayan cultures relied on chia seeds for energy as part of their daily diet. And the modern day Tarahumara people of Mexico of ‘Born to Run’ fame still rely on chia seeds to do what they do.
Chia seeds provide the body with protein, minerals, vitamins and trace nutrients. They are about 16% protein and include all essential amino acids needed by the body for proper muscle growth, tissue repair and many other bodily functions.
Filled with omega-3, magnesium, calcium, potassium and iron, they’re also packed full of fibre. But it’s what happens when you soak them in water which is where the magic lies – they develop a gel coating which also makes them super-hydrating. The gelling properties of chia help to slow the conversion of carbohydrates into sugar, providing a long burning fuel source i.e., no spike/crash here, just a steady release.
The nutrient list goes a long way in addressing not only the needs of an endurance athlete but your everyday nutrition needs. It's not a silver bullet providing everything in one, but boy, if you could select just one thing, you couldn't get much better than a Chia drink! And it's totally natural so your body tolerates it much better than something artificial – especially when it's working hard.
I rely on Chia drinks when I'm adventuring to keep me going, and I notice that when it's hot, the Chia keeps me hydrated longer than the other athletes. Running or not, I start everyday with Chia to maintain my daily nutrition. Chia is certainly deserving of the label “superfood” and you don't just need to be an endurance athlete to benefit from it.