When I started running, I went from being a carnivore to completely giving up eggs, dairy and meat. Fish is the only animal protein that I ingest and that too sparingly. One, I like my sushi thank you very much, and two it’s very hard to get Vitamin B-12 only through a plant-based diet. But I digress. What I discovered instead was the magic of Chia, through very simple Chia recipes. Chia seeds definitely fall under the category of super foods.
In just an one ounce sample, dried Chia seeds contain 9% of daily protein intake, 13% fat and 42% dietary fiber. In addition these little seeds also contain essential minerals like phosphorus, manganese, calcium, potassium and sodium. For long distance running, these minerals are vital, especially getting them to your tendons so they can absorb them quick. As a seriously potent antioxidant, Chia seeds have 3 times more antioxidants than blueberries. This also means they store for a very long time without getting rancid.
Trader Joe’s recently started carrying these seeds and you can also get it from Sprouts Market. Amazon has tons of options too. Dried Chia seeds have a very nutty texture and a neutral taste, but you have to get over the looks! Just like flax seeds, you can mix Chia into cereals, pancakes and other baked goods, but my favorite Chia recipe is Chia Fresca. It’s the perfect way to hydrate before or after a long run.
Chia Recipes: Making Chia Fresca
After experimenting with various proportions, my simple recipe for making Chia Fresca has the following ingredients:
- Tall glass of cold water
- Pinch of sea salt
- One whole freshly squeezed lime
- 2 tsps of Agave nectar
If I’m running on a super hot day, I usually end up adding a few ice cubes in there too. Instead of sea salt, you can also use Organic Kelp Granules as a salt alternative. This gets you your iodine intake and makes the Chia Fresca that much more healthier. Dunk all these into the large glass of water and keep stirring so the Chia Seeds don’t stick to each other and form a gelatin ball. Give it 10 or 15 minutes for the seeds to absorb the water and then slurp it down. Super refreshing!
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