Chia Super Juice – Product Review
Founded in New Zealand, CHIA has recently hit the shelves in Australia. CHIA uses Australian grown chia seeds and real fruit from New Zealand. Originally designed as an endurance and recovery drink for athletes, the team behind CHIA also believe it is perfect for athletes, parents, children, professionals and the health conscious alike.
Founder and neuroscientist Chloe Van Dyke noticed a gap in the market for sports drinks that weren’t packed full of sugar, salt and artificial ingredients. She wondered why there wasn’t already a product that was made with chia seeds, and started trialling the hydration of chia seeds with different liquids.
Chloe’s sister Florence joined CHIA team in 2015, after quitting her corporate job as a solicitor. Together, the sisters are on a mission to provide consumers a natural beverage for sustained energy and increased wellbeing.
Ingredients: (ingredients differ between flavours) Feijoa & Pink Guava: hydrated chia seeds 83.7% (water % chia seeds), feijoa puree 8.7%, apple concentrate 5.3%, guava puree 1.7%, natural flavour, lemon concentrate, citric acid.
|Servings per package:|
|Average per serve||Average per 100ml|
|Trans Fat||Less than 0.1g||Less than 0.1g|
|Sodium||8mg (0.2mmol)||3mg (0.08mmol)|
|Potassium||330mg (14mmol)||120mg (5mmol)|
|Calcium||118mg = 11%RDI*||43mg|
|Magnesium||81mg = 25%RDI*||30mg|
|Iron||1.7mg = 13% RDI*||0.6mg|
|*Recommended dietary intake|
The star ingredient – chia:
Today, you don’t have to look far to find “chia seeds”, they are now a common ingredient added to many foods to boost its nutrition profile. Chia seeds can now be found in bread, salads, Juices, microwaved rice, jam, yoghurt and snack bars. It can even be found it dog food!
Chia seeds are derived from the desert plant Salvia Hispanica, a member of the mint family. This plant is native to central and southern Mexico and Guatemala but today is grown in many regions of the world due to its growing popularity.
Chia seeds are a small oval shape, approximately 1 mm in diameter. They are mottle-coloured, with brown, gray, black, and white. The seeds are hydrophilic and when soaked have the ability to absorb up to twelve times their weight in liquid. When soaked the seeds develop a gelatinous texture.
Health properties of chia and Chia Super Juice:
- High content (18%) of omega-3 fatty acids –these essential fats that are important for heart health and brain function.
- Good source of fibre. Chia’s 34% fibre content rate sits higher than flaxseeds (linseed) or sesame seeds. 1 serve provides 5.7g of fibre which is a great contribution to our daily recommended dietary intake of 25–30g. Due to its high fibre content many will also find it more “filling” and satisfying compared to other juices. The fibre may help stabilise bloods sugar levels, prevent sugar cravings and the delayed energy crash often experienced after consuming other high sugar foods and beverages.
- Fibre is also important for gut health and keeping us regular. This is when adequate fluid is consumed or the opposite effect will occur – constipation!
- Source of protein although achieving our protein requirements are not often a concern with its abundance in the food supply and common dietary intake trends in Australia.
- Source of calcium providing 118mg or 11% of our recommended dietary intake of 1000mg/day (females 19-50 yr and males 19-70 yr).
- Source of other essential minerals including iron, magnesium and zinc.
- Gluten free so safe for those with coeliac disease.
Taste: the first mouthful is defiantly a shock! The feel of the little chia seeds with the gelatinous layer will feel strange at first but combined with the sweet, fruity taste it continues to be pleasant.
This is a beverage I prefer to have super chilled. It is also a nutritious and tasty ingredient you can add to your overnight oats, hot porridge, mix in with plain or greek yoghurt, into a smoothie or even make icy poles!
Who will benefit:
Chia Super Juice is a tasty nutrient rich beverage providing essential vitamins and minerals and also Omega 3, electrolytes and fibre. Although a great source of electrolytes and carbohydrates athletes should be cautious during prolonged high intensity training and competition especially running or high impact activity. Due to the fibre content (5.7g per serve) stomach upset and the urgency to use the bathroom “runners trots” may occur, although some may be more prone / sensitive than others. Athletes have reported very positive results using the product but variability between individuals should be noted. Long term high quality studies looking at performance using solely this product have not yet been conducted.
For prolonged moderate to high intensity training and competition I recommend sticking to specially formulated sports drinks with electrolyte and carbohydrate levels known to promote optimal absorption and performance. Chia Super juice is a great beverage to have post training to help replenish glycogen stores, electrolytes and help with rehydration.
For those who are not training intensively for a specific event and just enjoy being active Chia Super Juice can provide a refreshing, hydrating and nutrient rich beverage along with its many health benefits during active days.
Vegetarian or Vegans can benefit from chia’s nutrition qualities as a source of Omega 3’s, protein and calcium. The high fibre content effects the ‘GI’ or ‘Glycaemic Index’ by lowering it. Diabetics may find it a safer alternative to regular juice having a lesser effect on their blood sugar levels although close monitoring is advised and caution to serving size (total glycaemic load).
Where to buy:
Chia Super Juice is available in five flavours including Blackcurrant, Blueberry, Orange and Passionfruit, Coconut Water and Mango, and Feijoa and Pink Guava. The products can be purchased from leading health food stores and independent grocers in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Canberra for $4.99. Visit their website here.