Posts filed under ‘Dr. Wayne Coates’
(Excerpts from an interview of Dr. Wayne Coates, by Fred Liers of Interview with Dr. Wayne Coates: Chia Seeds (Part 1)
Nutritional Benefits of Chia Seeds
Fred: Do you get much feedback from your customers? What do they tell you about their experiences with chia?
Dr. Coates: Yes, we get a fair number of calls. They tell us what chia seeds have done for their health. I always tell them to post their comments on our website, the commercial site for Arizona Chia.
Fred: I frequently hear from people about their experiences with consuming chia seeds available from Integrated Health. People have reported major benefits from chia seeds for their health and healing. Benefits like increased energy, better digestion, improved skin tone, and help for blood sugar issues.
People also report that chia helps their pets. Dogs and cats have experienced remarkable results. Pet owners will grind the chia, and serve it to their pets mixed with food. Pets with blood sugar control issues have been helped in particular. Diabetic pets can receive lower insulin dosages, and some go off it altogether.
Dr. Coates: We receive similar reports from customers. We’ve heard some truly amazing things, but generally we don’t go into much detail telling people about what to expect from chia. Everyone has their own perception of what chia seeds can do. Call it mind over matter. If nothing else, you can believe what you want, and if you really believe it, then that’s what it is. There’s no arguing against or changing a belief.
Let’s assume that chia affects a certain person in a specific way, and honestly it does. That is only the experience of that particular person because different people have different experiences with chia. Or it can depend upon the conditions they may have because then there can be different effects. For example, one person’s results using chia could depend upon how effectively their digestive system is working, but another person’s results could be entirely different.
Fred: Another person may reap a different set of benefits?
Dr. Coates: Exactly. So we’re not promoting chia for any particular purpose. We do say what it contains, like the balanced essential fats, and let customers decide whether chia may be helpful for them.
Now, what is true is that the nutrients in chia seeds have been shown to have certain effects. Fiber has been shown to have certain effects. Antioxidants have been shown to have certain effects. Essential fats have been shown to have certain effects. And so on. We say “These are the nutrients chia has in it.” Then people can decide.
Fred: I know that for myself, consuming chia seeds has given me a lot more energy. I take chia daily in my favorite superfood smoothies, green superfoods, or vegetable juices. I usually grind it first because it goes better in smoothies that way. I definitely notice that I become energized, have more endurance, and more brainpower. If I consume chia two or three times per day, then the effects are greater.
I find that a chia gel smoothie is a major power-up “lunch” or afternoon pick-me-up. I like to include green superfoods like chlorella, spirulina, or Rejuvenate right into my smoothies. I use a Vita-Mix machine, but any blender or shaker jar works. If I’m on-the-go, I may shake up some chlorella with my chia gel smoothie in a mason jar. For anyone interested, there is a basic recipe for a chia gel smoothie posted on the website: (http://www.integratedhealth.com/rec…) .
Chia to me is very exciting because it is a superfood that truly makes life better. Almost anyone can eat chia and improve their health and their quality of life. In this regard, I think superfoods like chia can change the world for the better. Is that too big of a statement?
Dr. Coates: No, not at all. That’s the whole thing. If people were eating superfoods like chia, they would be a lot healthier and have a lot fewer health problems. It certainly would help their health situation, let’s put it that way, in one way or another. I’m not saying exactly how it would help any particular individual, but it would definitely help them.
Fred: I agree. You know, I try to do a lot of good things for myself, and chia is a major component of my health regimen. I consume plenty of chlorella, fresh vegetable juices, salads, and nutrient-dense foods like chia seeds. My nutritional supplement regimen is based around several core supplements, which include a high-quality multivitamin, a vitamin C formula, and essential fats. Those are basics. Then I can add herbs or other supplements depending on more immediate requirements.
Dr. Coates: That is interesting! Well, we know that chia is a food that has no known limits on its consumption, and it definitely combines well with many other foods.
Fred: With respect to chia seeds as a superfood, and the growing level of awareness of it among people interested in health, it is evident that many individuals are awakening to a greater understanding of the role of foods and nutrition in human wellness. I consider it a great awakening, since we in modern civilization have in many ways destroyed our health during the past century, mostly through mass surrender to junk foods, health-damaging lifestyles, stress, and extremely dysfunctional systems of medicine.
I definitely see changes happening, mostly for individuals who are seeking healthier ways of being, and who are willing to look way past conventional models of nutrition, the food pyramid, and all that propaganda. Given such positive changes in awareness, what do you see as the future of chia?
Dr. Coates: That is not so easy to predict because there are so many companies simply talking about it right now. As I said, when a player finally comes along like a Whole Foods Market or a Trader Joe’s – or a similarly-sized company – and they are selling chia and doing some promotion for it, that’s when we will see it take off.
Fred: We are not quite there yet?
Dr. Coates: Well, it is happening. But think of how many other products companies want to sell. I’m so busy with my projects, I don’t have the time to visit stores to make the case for chia.
Fred: That’s not part of your mission.
Dr. Coates: Well, it is my job in a sense. But actually it won’t be necessary for me to go to stores and persuade them to sell chia. Demand is becoming great enough that people are asking for it. Store owners and managers hear questions, such as “What is chia?” and “Do you carry chia?” That’s how it is happening.
Fred: Demand for chia is speaking for itself.
Dr. Coates: Yes, and soon larger companies will start seriously investigating it. Part of their reservation has been ensuring adequate supply. If they decide to go for it, but they have only 2,000 bags when they need 20,000 bags, then they get into trouble when their customers can’t be supplied.
Fred: Is the chia supply rising?
Dr. Coates: Yes, the supply is rising and we can ramp it up, if we want. But until buyers purchase large quantities, the question becomes who is going to produce chia if there is a likelihood that it will sit around waiting for a buyer? It’s always a chicken and egg question. What’s there: demand or supply?
That’s one of the basic issues with any of these “new” crops like chia seeds. That is, achieving a balance between demand and supply. Demand may be there, but then they say there’s no supply. Or the supply might be there, that is, we can grow the chia, but then the question will be who is going to buy it. The issue of supply and demand remains until we can work it out, and currently is fundamental with chia production and distribution.
If you’d like to purchase MILA chia seeds, or attend a MILA TEA PARTY, email us.
Not all Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for the human body. Ive learned this today from Dr. Wayne Coates, perhaps the world’s foremost educator on chia seeds. Dr. Coates was among the first to grow chia seeds experimentally (as far back as 1991) and later for commercial purposes. An expert in the field of new crops such as chia and jojoba, his career as a research professor at the University of Arizona spanned over twenty-five years. Dr. Coates holds a doctorate in Agricultural Engineering from Oklahoma State University, Stillwater. He is the co-author with Ricardo Ayerza of Chia: Rediscovering a Forgotten Crop of the Aztecs, 2005.
Dr. Coates avers that not all the Omega-3 fatty acids that we take as part of our diet is essential. Most of us take in fish oils and algae oils, which contain mostly EPA and DHA Omega-3 acids, which are not essentially needed by the body. The more important Omega-3 fatty acids known ALA (alpha linolenic acids) are often missing from our diets. Yet, the needed ALA can be obtained from a regular intake of the Aztec superfood chia seed, marketing under the brand name MILA the Miracle seed.
Dr. Coates talks about Omega-3 fatty acids in the following video. (Please click on the link Is Mila a good source of Omega-3s?
Q) How does Harvest time affect the quality of the product?
A) If the crop is not harvested at optimum maturity, the quality suffers and as such is lower in total oil and Omega-3 content as well as other nutritional components.
Q) How did Salvia hispanica L. become known as “Chia”?
A) The Aztec word for this crop was “chian” but was shortened to “chia” through translation from Natal which is the native language of the Aztecs.
Q) Is there a nutritional difference in the varieties of the seed?
A) Yes. The oil content, amount of Omega-3, protein and phytonutrients vary. Mila™ is made using seed which is selected because they contain the highest amounts of these components.
Q) What conditions affect the nutritional properties of the Salvia hispanica L.?
A) As with any oil seed crop, cooler climates increase oil content and in this seed it also increases the Omega-3 content as well.
Q) What is the difference between ground and the Mila™ process?
A) Conventional grinding heats the seed, which in turn leads to oxidation and decreased oil quality and to an extent quantity. Thus grinding reduces the shelf life of the product. The Mila™ process opens the seed and increases the surface area exposed to the digestive process. This ensures the highest bio-availability of any other form of Salvia hispanica L. known to me.
Q) What is the shelf-life of Mila™?
A) An unopened pouch of Mila™ can last for several years. Once opened, many factors contribute to its shelf-life. Although Mila™ does not require refrigeration, we recommend that if you do not use the product as directed (each pouch is a one-month supply) that you store it in a temperate, dry place such as your refrigerator.
Q) What is Bio-Availability?
A) Bio-availability is a technical term used to express nutrient availability and absorption. The more bio-available the product, the more beneficial it is to the body.
Q) How many variations of Salvia hispanica L. are out there and are they considered equal in nutritional benefits?
A) The Aztecs had numerous varieties, however today this number has been reduced significantly due to mixing of the seed following the Spanish conquest. Not all have different nutritional profiles since the vast majority of seed available today came from the same mixed source of seed.
Q) What factors affect the nutritional value of Salvia hispanica L.?
A) Climate, rainfall, soil conditions, altitude, latitude and agronomic practices all contribute to the quality of the seed.
Q) How do you determine which seed goes into Mila™? Is there a Quality Control process or grading system for the Salvia hispanica L.?
A) All of our production is analyzed in certified laboratories. Based on these analyses, we select only the highest quality seed which is then mixed and processed to produce Mila™.
Q) What happens to the seed that doesn’t make the cut for use in Mila™?
A) Mila™ truly is a unique product which can only be grown in limited supply! Our mission is to change the health of the world and whatever seed does not make the cut is utilized in many different channels of distribution to achieve that mission.
by Richard Ayerza and Dr. Wayne Coates
One of the four main Aztec crops at the time of Columbus’s arrival in the New World, chia is now a forgotten food of the Americas. Chia seed oil offers the highest omega-3 fatty acid content available from plants, but today this species is known only for its use in “chia pets.” Yet pre-Columbian civilizations used chia as a raw material for medicines and nutritional compounds, while chia flour could be stored for years as a food reserve and was valued as a source of energy on long journeys.
In this book, agronomist Ricardo Ayerza and agricultural engineer Wayne Coates trace the long and fascinating history of chia’s use, then reveal the scientific story of the plant and its modern potential. They compare fatty acid profiles of chia with our other major sources—fish oil, flaxseed, and marine algae—and provide evidence that chia is superior in many ways.
Here are just some of the benefits that chia provides:
- chia has the highest known percentage of alpha-linolenic acid, and the highest combined alpha-linolenic and linoleic fatty acid percentage of all crops
- chia has more protein, lipids, energy, and fiber—but fewer carbs—than rice, barley, oats, wheat, or corn—and its protein is gluten-free
- chia is an excellent source of calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, potassium, iron, zinc, and copper
- chia is low in sodium: salmon has 78 times as much, tuna 237 times as much
- chia exhibits no evidence of allergic response, even in individuals with peanut and tree-nut allergies
- chia doesn’t give off a “fishy flavor,” unlike some other sources of omega-3 fatty acid
The need to balance the essential fatty acid content of the human diet, combined with the need for a safe, renewable, omega-3 fatty acid source, positions chia to become one of the world’s important crops. As this insightful study shows, current nutritional understanding provides an excellent opportunity to reintroduce this important food to the world.
(Excerpts from a video discussion by Dr. Wayne Coates, the rediscoverer of Salvia hispanica L. in 1991, and the world’s foremost expert on the superfood commonly known as chia.)
Is Mila™ a good source of Omega-3’s?
“We hear a lot today of Omega-3’s, and there’s no question Omega-3’s in our diet are very important. In fact, the problem today is that we’re eating a lot of Omega-6’s and not enough of Omega-3’s. We should be having close to 1:1 ratio. many of us are getting 10:1 or 20:1 Omega-6’s to Omega-3’s. So we need to increase our Omega-3’s
“Why are Omega-3’s important?
Heart health is one of the main things. There area number of sources of Omega-3’s and they’re definitely not all equal.
“MILA contains what is known as alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). It is the only essential Omega-3.
“There are also what is call long-chain Omega-3’s, DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) and EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid). They are not essential. And there is much discussion about where we should get our Omega-3’s from.
“The fish industry would lead you to believe that you should be eating fish oil or algae oil, which are the long-chain EPAs and DHAs. That is not the case. Those are not essential fatty acids.
Änd the reason is, our body takes the ALA, which is in the MILA, converts it into EPA and DHA. The big discussion is in how much can be converted. Can you convert enough?
“The fish industry could again say “no”, but that hasn’t been shown to be the case. If there is a confounding factor here, when our bodies convert the ALA to these long-chain (DHA and EPA), they use enzymes to do this. Because we’re a lot of Omega-6’s, there’s a conflict because the body is fighting for these enzymes to convert the Omega-6’s to aracadonic acids, and also using the same ones to convert to EPA and DHA.
“So by cutting down the amount of Omega-6 in our diet, and upping the Omega-3 in th form of ALA, we get beter conversion, and your body will convert what you need. You can always supplement if you feel it’s necessary, but it really has not been shown to be true.
“So, MILA is the source of the only essential Omega-3 fatty acids.”
Several companies now market chia as the world’s superfood. But MILA has proven to be the only one that has consistently provided the highest quality, high-grade chia seed anywhere in the world.
What Makes MILA different?
Says Dr. Wayne Coates, the rediscoverer and the foremost expert on Salvia hispanica L., the chia plant: “There are many types of chia out there. There are people growing it in different places.
“The first problem is, if you’re not sure about the quality of the seed, and you don’t know about chia in particular, the problem is you don’t know whether it’s good or bad. You can’t tell if there are wheat seeds in there, if they’re immature. And the problem with immature seeds is that Omega-3 content is very low. And you can end up with dirty seed.
“If the product in particular is ground chia that’s available, they can definitely hid a lot of garbage if you will. It’s not harmful; it’s just not have enough of the benefits.
“What we’ve done with MILA is that we’ve actually selected seeds from different locations. We know that depending on the climate, the soil, and time of harvest, we can affect the quality. We then not only select from different regions but we also look at the whole aspect of cleaning to ensure that the base seeds that are going into the product are of the absolutely best we can get.
“Then we process it in a system that carefully controls how the seed is opened. It is opened where the temperature is not increased at all, because increasing temperature will lead to oxidation. So by selecting the seed, producing a high quality product that increased the bio-availability through the processing operation, it is the best available.
“When I say bio-available, it means tha your body will get more out of it. The whole seed itself is very good, but by opening it, in essence it allows the stomach acids to get at all the aspects of the seed internally, utilize what’s needed,and go from there. And that’s why I think, we have the absolute best product out there.
“Sure there’s lots of people out there selling cheap chia. You can find it on the internet. ButI have people contact me saying “I bought this seed, and it doesn’t work.” And I’m talking seed compared to seed, without even comparing to MILA. But nobody I ever talked talk made any detrimental comments about MILA, compared to the whole seed.
“I think the key is, we have the quality, and we will continue with the whole process of improving the quality. We’re not only working to select seeds. We’re looking at different growing regions. We’re looking at improving the process to ensure that the product we have available is the absolute best that is possible.”