Chia Fresca (Iskiate), an Ancient Homemade Energy Drink

by on Oct.04, 2011, under Health


The Recipe

Ingredients:
8-10 oz of cool filtered water
1 lemon or lime
1 Tbsp chia seeds

Instructions:
Add the juice of 1/2 lemon or lime to a cup of water. Then add 1 Tablespoon of chia seeds and let them soak for at least 5 minutes. More time allows the seeds to become more gelatinous, which is better in my opinion. I prefer to wait 15 to 30 minutes before drinking. I leave it in the fridge to stay cool during the soaking time.

History:
If you are reading this, then you probably already know about the Tarahumara runners of Aztec descent in Mexico. Warriors and long-distance runners would use this recipe to fuel them for long periods of moderate to intense activity. There are traditonal stories of warriors traveling and fighting while eating little more than 1 tablespoon of chia daily and yet they still got stronger all the time.

Nutrition
Even if you aren´t seeking an energy boost, this drink is loaded with nutrients in a form that is easily digested and absorbed. It´s a great balance of fats, carbs and protein and the lemon juice (add as much as you see fit) aids with digestion. And they’re packed with antioxidants and minerals. See the following:

1 Tbsp of chia seeds contains:

Omega 3 fatty acids – 2,375mg
This is an excellent vegetarian source of omega 3′s! It is truly amazing for all of your cells and systems. (Many people acquire this from fish sources – hence the nickname “fish oil.”) If you take an omega 3 supplement, you should make sure you take it with food, especially fat, to increase absorption. Chia seeds are high in a fat, a natural balance to increase absorption. The omega 3 fatty acids are also called EFA’s, or “essential fatty acids.” This is because the human body is unable to manufacture these oils on its own and it is “essential” that they be ingested regularly. Consider them vitamins!

Fat – 4 grams
Fat is a great energy source, especially if you are trying to live more primal or paleo. After studying metabolism I have learned that the body is better equipped to run on fat instead of sugar. That is one reason why this is an energy drink. It is a fat beverage which your body will love, rather than a high fructose corn syrup beverage, which will make you fat and give you diabetes among other things.

Magnesium – 35mg
The SAD diet (Standard American Diet) tends to leave 60-90% of people magnesium deficient, (sources give different %’s.) I often recommend Mg supplements of 250-450mg daily. Drinking this 3x/day provides 105 mg alone! AND it´s better absorbed than from pills.

Calcium – 60mg
Calcium is extremely important and is often not well-absorbed, especially when people try to get it from pasteurized dairy sources. In chia seeds, the calcium is more readily absorbed because of the natural mineral balance.

Antioxidants
Loaded. Loaded with them. Even more than berries, the wonder fruits.

Iron
Let your body decide how much iron you need. Since you probably aren´t eating enough spinach or other green leafy vegetables, and there´s a 50% chance that you are a woman, (haha, I crack myself up), you should be on this natural supplement. The package says it has more iron than spinach! And it won’t constipate you like iron pills.

Organic / Natural
These are not genetically modified and are not poisoned with pesticides. It´s one of nature´s plentiful provisions for your maximum health.

Other uses:
I sometimes sprinkle them into a smoothie or on top of a salad, and occasionally just chomp on a few out of a bowl. My kids love to do that too. It´s fun, particularly if your kids are not addicted to TV.

Caution:
Back when we were living on the RV, we were unaware of the gelatinous nature of these seeds and a few sprinkled their way into our sink. Well, they are quite are to get rid of because of the slimy, gelatinous nature they exhibit once they become wet. This makes them great for your bowels so long as you are drinking enough water. But they´re not so good for your sink and kitchen floor, just because they´re super tiny and hard to clean up. I recommend you not spill too many.

Drink and Enjoy!
By soaking these seeds you are starting the sprouting process which makes food, especially nuts and seeds, more easily digestible. This drink is just one of the many easy treats you can regularly incorporate into your life to greatly improve your health. This takes time. Be patient and be consistent. This can possibly help reverse depressive and other mood symptoms as well as heart disease among many other disease processes. Providing your body with the nutrients it needs to heal itself is your best bet for reversing everything naturally reversible.

And if you are going to be training hard for a marathon or just good health, why not drink what the Aztecs drank. It’s tried and true and has withstood the evolution of the Aztec culture for many years. And after all, they were pretty intense, ripping each other´s hearts out by hand and always hoping to die the “flowery death” in battle. It´s giving me chills just thinking about it. Must be time to get my iskiate out of the fridge.

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