We’re nearing the end of Heart Month here in Canada, and here’s a recipe to tribute. Heart disease affects approximately 2.4 million Canadian adults and is the second leading cause of death here (Public Health Agency of Canada, 2018). The fortunate thing is that it is preventable by making healthy life choices: quitting smoking, limiting alcohol use, eating a healthy and balanced meals, adequate quality sleep and regular physical activity. You know what they say, ‘prevention is the best medicine’. Jam right it is! Feeling in a bit of a rut and not sure what ‘healthy and balanced’ means when it comes to food? Start with choosing more vegetables, whole grains, and having a source of protein at each meal, limit sugary beverages (including juice) and other processed foods. If you’re wanting to take it a step further, try including some omega three sources such as salmon, sardines, anchovies, mackerel, tuna and flounder or chia, flaxseed, hemp seed, pumpkin seeds, pecans, soy nuts and walnuts for plant-based sources (see full list). Omega-3 is an essential fatty acid known to provide heart healthy benefits such as reducing inflammation and blood pressure (Harvard Health, 2013). Chia seed, traditionally cultivated by the Aztecs in pre-Columbian times is now often consumed as a topping or put into smoothies, breakfast cereals, energy or granola bars, yogurt and breads. The most interesting thing is the changes it creates when placed with a liquid: it thickens! In other words, it’s perfect for making jam (a perfect substitute for sugar and pectin – thickeners for making jelly).
This recipe couldn’t get any simpler. No cooking required – just a microwave and a heatproof container: mix ingredients together and voila! Ready for you to enjoy as an add-on to your yogurt snack, or in your PB-J sandwich made with whole grain toast, protein-packed nut butter and chia fruit jam. Happy Healthy Heart Month!
3-Ingredient Chia Jam
MAKES: 1 Cup (250 mL)
PREPARATION TIME: 5 MINUTES. COOK TIME: 2 MINUTES.
EQUIPMENT: MICROWAVEABLE BOWL, MEASURING SPOON AND CUP, MICROWAVE.
- 2 Cups (500mL) Frozen Fruit
- 2 Tbsp (30 mL) Chia Seeds
- 1 Tbsp Lemon Juice
- Optional: 1 Tbsp Honey
- Measure and place frozen fruit in a heatproof container (I used a mason jar).
- Microwave for 1 minute intervals twice, mixing in-between (or until fruit becomes almost sauce-like).
- Add chia seeds, lemon juice and honey to sweeten as desired.
- Store in airtight container in the fridge and enjoy with yogurt, or on toast for an easy and nourishing breakfast or snack.
Per Serving (2 Tablespoons, 30 mL)
Calories: 30 kcal
Fat: 1 g
Carbohydrates: 5 g
Fiber: 3 g
(Net Carbohydrate: 2 g)
Protein: 1 g
A source of:
Half a serving of ‘Vegetables and Fruit’ as per Canada’s Food Guide
- Canada, P. H. (2018, February 01). Minister’s Message – Heart Month – February 2018. Retrieved February 26, 2018, from https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/news/2018/02/minister_s_message-heartmonth-february2018.html
- Harvard Health Publishings (2013, November). Omega-3-rich foods: Good for your heart. Retrieved February 26, 2018, from https://www.health.harvard.edu/heart-health/omega-3-rich-foods-good-for-your-heart
- Food Sources of Omega-3 Fats. (n.d.). Retrieved February 26, 2018, from https://www.dietitians.ca/Your-Health/Nutrition-A-Z/Fat/Food-Sources-of-Omega-3-Fats.aspx