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Summer substitutions + the benefits of chia seeds

August 29th, 2013 1 Comment

Summer foods

 

I get tired of eating the same things day in and day out.  But! I’m not one to seek out alternatives; they have to be offered on a menu or by a friend for me to try something new.  My short stint in NYC earlier this year gave me plenty of opportunities to eat outside of my box.  I had ramp for the first time (to my knowledge) and I fell in love with chia seed pudding.  Now with the farmer’s market around the corner I’m going nuts with new combos! (See my zucchini recipes here.)

Above are a few of my favorites.  Nothing crazy, just a quick switch to keep me intrigued.

  • Chia seed pudding (my recipe below) instead of yogurt.
  • FRESH mandarin oranges in my salad instead of grapes
  • Blueberries (any fresh berry) instead of jam
  • Chic peas instead of rice or potatoes
  • Delicious yellow tomatoes instead of red
  • Quinoa with roasted peaches instead of oatmeal with blueberries.

Don’t get me wrong, I love jam and potatoes and the rest of it, but I just needed a change.

Chia seed pudding is SUPER simple to make, which is preferable over buying it.   I’ve found that the ones in whole foods have addititves you don’t really need.  So here’s all you need to do to whip up your own.

Chia Seed Pudding

  1. Pour one cup of fresh almond milk in a bowl (my DIY almond milk video coming soon, I promise!)
  2. Add one half of a 1/4 cup of chia seeds, a little vanilla (about 1 tspn), and cinnamon if you feel like it.  Stir.
  3. Cover and let sit in the fridge overnight.  You’ll find the next day the seeds have created a gel to thicken the milk and it’s a nice little pudding.  If you want it to be thicker (I like mine thin), then add more seeds next time.

There are many benefits to eating chia seeds.  

  • Best source of Omega-3s (even moreso than salmon)
  • Controls blood sugar by slowing conversion of carbs to simply sugars
  • Make you feel fuller faster by forming a gel that is 10x their weight in water
  • Chia gel is hydrating

Some say it helps with weight loss which is due to the fact the seeds make you feel fuller faster.

 

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