An ancient grain once revered by the Aztecs is starting to be recognized as a modern nutritional panacea. The name will sound familiar – it’s called the chia seed, of Chia Pet fame – the stuff that was used to sprout hair quickly on those cheesy novelty gifts. Now researchers have found it contains high levels of fibre, calcium, magnesium, anti-oxidants, and omega 3 fats. They served it to diabetics and found it made their blood thinner, reduced inflammation and lowered blood pressure. The next step is to study its effects on heart disease, arthritis, and weight loss – it seems to suppress appetite. In the meantime you can buy it in health food stores under the name salba, and some manufacturers are starting to add it to foods.