Most of us were told about the wonders of chia through every vibram owners bible, 'Born To Run.' You know the the book I mean? The one I have that love/hate relationship with because it's a great story that focuses on Scott Jurek who was just about invisible outside the ultra running world. The hate part is all the half truths you read that has every reader who never even had a hang nail buying vibrams and jumping on the shin splint band wagon, among other things. Now don't expect to run like Tarahumara after chugging chia all night because after all the secret might be in something else they do, for example, before those long distance runs, they consume large quantities of corn beer which is very high in carbohydrates. Funny how no one jumped on that idea, maybe because we know it would leave us dehydrated or puking three miles into a marathon. Maybe certain things work for certain people because they were raised for generations doing it.
As for chia seeds, I have no problems with this little member of the sage family. One thing that is never mentioned is that chia seeds can have a wild effect on your stomach resulting in frequent port-o potty stops during your next race if you're not careful. Only take less than a teaspoon per consumption.
Chia seeds have been used by native Americas and the now famous Tarahumara Mexicans as an endurance food. Today we know chia is the highest source of Omega -3 fatty acids, next to the flax seed. Chia seeds are also more versatile than flax seeds as you can mix them in all sorts of food and drinks and chia (unlike flax) doesn't go bad. In water chia expands and becomes gelatinous. As I said it relieves constipation, lubricates dryness, treats insomnia, and improves mental focus.
I like to add chia seeds to lemon water and add a teaspoon of xylitol, also known as birch sugar. It's refreshing in the summer and makes me think of a healthy version of bubble tea.