Or more precisely, do you know what’s in your jam? Do you know what exactly is in that jar of Smucker’s Strawberry Jam perched so proudly on your refrigerator shelf? Obviously strawberries; but, do you know what else is lurking inside that familiar looking jar? Check the ingredients, and you will discover, that in addition to the strawberries, there is high fructose corn syrup (YIKES!), corn syrup, sugar, fruit pectin, and citric acid. Hmmm…..
Precisely the reason I prefer to make my own jam, which only has three ingredients: berries, maple syrup, and chia seeds. Each added ingredient provides your body with vitamins and minerals crucial to your health and wellbeing. Maple syrup is a good source of Zinc, and Manganese, while chia seeds provide Calcium, Phosphorus, Dietary Fiber and Manganese.
So how do these added ingredients affect your body? According to the world’s healthiest foods,
Dietary Fiber is needed for
- bowel regularity
- maintaining normal cholesterol levels
- maintaining normal blood sugar levels
- controlling weight
- bone production
- produce healthy skin
- control blood sugar
- protect against free radical damage
- immune function
- skin health
- sensory organ health
- male reproductive health
Calcium is needed for
- bone health
- regulating acid/alkaline balance
- muscle and nerve function
- keeps bones and teeth healthy
- eliminates weakness in the body
- facilitates digestion
- keeps kidneys healthy
Now compare that to the added ingredients in Smucker’s. Let’s see, we have high fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, sugar, fruit pectin, and citric acid. There is no nutritional value in high fructose corn syrup, corn syrup or sugar. There is a minimal amount of fiber in fruit pectin, and while citric acid does have some health benefits, it’s the last ingredient on the label…meaning there isn’t much of it in there.
Yep. Now that’s why I make my own jam! And, this recipe is really quite simple. You too could have your own homemade jam for breakfast tomorrow.
Chia Seed Jam
4 cups of your favorite berries
4 T. maple syrup
3 T. chia seeds
Place berries (mine were frozen) and maple syrup in sauce pan. Turn burner to high. Bring to a boil, and stir occasionally until berries get soft. Smash berries until they reach desired consistency. (I like my jam “chunky”.) Add chia seeds and stir. Simmer for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remover from burner and let cool. Place in jar and refrigerate.
I have made the jam using all sorts of berries and even rhubarb! I love what it does for my breakfasts.
I love it when I can provide my body with the nutrients it needs to perform its very best! And this is a tasty way of doing it!