Suddenly this week we’re hearing all kinds of buzz about The Signature Grain. “Is this a whole grain?” “Why don’t you include the Signature Grain on your list of whole grains?” and so on and so forth.

We looked into this “Signature Grain” and learned it’s actually Salvia Hispanica, sometimes referred to as Salba – or as chia. Yes, as in Chia Pet. For those of you not old enough to remember back 25 years, the Chia Pet was a craze that preceeded the Pet Rock. Chia Pets consisted of a pottery form pocked with little holes containing chia seeds. Water the animal-shaped form, and before long, it grows green “fur” – chia sprouts.

Who knew 25 years ago that chia contained healthy omega 3 fatty acids, and that you’d be doing yourself a favor if you harvested your Chia Pet’s fur and ate it? BUT, even though chia in its many variations – including The Signature Grain – is a healthy food, it’s not in the same botanical family as grains, and thus not a whole grain. (Cynthia – May 28, 2008)

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