Jul 6, 2014

Smart Snackin' - The Chia Co. Chia Pods Review

Chia seeds absolutely exploded in the healthy living blogosphere a few years ago and have since seeped out into the real world, with chia seed snack bars now lining standard supermarket shelves and chia seeds appearing on (healthy focus) cafes and restaurants in everything from the standard chia pudding to cookies and even salads and breads.

While the takeover was certainly sudden, it's not much of a surprise. Flaxseeds have been popular since at least the '70s, especially among healthy eaters, vegetarians, and those follow heart-healthy diets, and chia seeds offer many of the same benefits, along with a host of their own.

Image from SFB
They're definitely good for more than growing chia pets with!

Chia seeds:

   - May naturally treat type 2 diabetes by slowing down digestion and thus preventing blood sugar spikes.

   - Pack a mean fiber punch! About 1/3 of an adult's recommended daily intake in one serving.

   - Support brain health with their 5g of omega 3 fatty acids per serving.

   - Provide 18% of the recommended daily calcium intake to prevent osteoporosis.

   - Great source of manganese, an essential mineral that supports bone health and helps with utilization of biotin, thiamin, etc.

   - Also a great source of phosphorous, which is important for cell tissue growth and repair.

   - Loaded with protein, which is important for your muscles and keeping you satisfied!

   - Stabilize blood sugar, which may help improve fat distribution by decreasing belly fat accumulation (which, in excess, isn't good for your heart).

   - Sleep soundly, because chia also packs in the tryptophan!

   - Improve heart health by lowering bad cholesterol while raising good cholesterol
Source: Huffington Post

Image from WFNF
After seeing them on the shelves, I recently got the chance to try The Chia Co's Chia Pod snack!

Though the company is Australia-based, their Chia Pods are readily available in four flavors in US grocery stores (check your local Whole Foods if your usual supermarket doesn't sell them yet).

The four flavors are: vanilla, mango, blueberry, and banana.

Spoiler alert: they were all delicious! I started with the blueberry chia pod.

The consistency is hard to explain - it's less thick than a traditional pudding and pearly. I think chia pudding is a bit of an acquired taste in general, but these are nice and sweet, so it's easy to acquire!

I love the convenient packaging! They're perfect for a brown bag lunch or a snack for the train. The spoon is under the plastic cap and it's an adorable spoon. The lid also makes it resealable if you get called away from your snack - which makes it great for busy work days!

The mango and vanilla were both great, too - the fruity flavors were quite fruity and all of the snacks were sweet, filling, and nutritious. They're great for summer, because they're healthy and don't make you feel weighed down.

I was surprised to find that the banana was my favorite, though - it really reminded me of banana bread! I ate it with walnuts and a crumbled banana nut muffin and it was fantastic!

They also have coffee bean, dark cocoa (sounds awesome), strawberry, and lemon & date, but I'm not sure if those are in the US. Hopefully soon, if not!

Why? Because the ones that are already here are yummy. And good for you!

Have you tried Chia Pods?

Which flavor sounds best to you? 

What did you do over July 4 weekend?

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