This might sound unbelievable but a tablespoon or two of flaxseed work like magic. Flaxseed benefits an impressive array of ailments that include cholesterol, cardiovascular diseases, digestive disorders, symptoms of menopause, skin and hair problems, cancer and more. Flaxseeds are rich in nutritious content.
The seeds are obtained from flax, one of the most ancient crops of civilization. The crop had first been cultivated in 3000 BC in Babylon followed by China and Egypt.
Flax Seed Nutrition Facts:
Flaxseeds contain omega-3 fatty acids like alpha-linolenic acid and linoleic acid, fiber, antioxidants like lignans and vitamins and minerals. Two heaped tablespoons of flaxseeds consist of the following-
- Flaxseed calories- 110
- Protein- 4 grams
- Carbohydrates- 6 grams
- Fat- 8.5 grams
- Fiber- 6 grams
- Manganese- 0.6 milligram
- Thiamine (Flaxseed vitamins)- 0.4 milligram
- Magnesium- 80 milligram
- Phosphorus- 132 milligrams
- Copper- 0.2 milligram
- Selenium- 5 milligrams
How to eat flaxseeds?
To derive the maximum benefits, the best way to eat flaxseeds is consuming 2 tablespoons of the seeds in sprouted form.
- Soak them in lukewarm water for about 10-15 minutes to get rid of the phytic acid which enhances the absorption of minerals into your body.
- Grind the seeds into a fine powder to get the entire nutritional value of flaxseeds.
- Eat a tablespoon of the powder on a daily basis to get the benefits of ground flaxseed.
How to grind flaxseeds?
Following are the few ways that can be employed to grind flaxseeds into a fine powder.
- Use a flax mill which is an electronic appliance that resembles a coffee grinder and is used for grinding flax seeds.
- Use a coffee grinder
- Use a spice mill to powder the flaxseeds in the same way different spices are ground.
- Use a food processor or a blender.
- Use a mortar and pestle, although this is a slightly laborious way to grind the seeds.
Flaxseed VS Flaxseed Meal:
The major difference between flaxseed meal and flaxseeds lies in the process of digestion. The whole seed is not beneficial for health as it passes out through the gastrointestinal tract as excreta.
Flaxseed meal, prepared from powdered flaxseeds is more easily digestible and beneficial for health than the whole seeds.
What constitutes as flaxseed milk health benefits?
Flaxseed milk is completely devoid of lactose and cholesterol which makes it perfectly healthy for the heart. The flax milk is also rich in omega-3 fatty acids(1) that help in the prevention of cancer, cardiac diseases, and diabetes.
What are the health benefits of chia and flaxseeds?
A mixture of flax and chia seeds is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties that help to cure inflammation, regulate blood pressure, lower the cholesterol and keep diabetes(2) under control.
20 Impressive Health Benefits of Flaxseed
Flaxseeds are renowned for their amazing health and therapeutic benefits that help to heal, cure and prevent numerous ailments and protect the human body. Elucidated below are 20 remarkable health benefits of flaxseed. Read on.
1. Rich in Antioxidants and Phytochemicals:
Flaxseeds contain lignin, which is a compound that resembles estrogen. This antioxidant, Lignin, fights against toxic free radicals and protects the body from numerous infections.
Lignin is also essential for the enhancement of fertility and for the controlling of the perimenopausal syndrome. The properties of antioxidant and anti-inflammation provide protection against pneumonopathy.
2. Prevention of Cancer
Flaxseeds contain antioxidants that fight against breast, colon, and prostate cancer(3). The lignans of flaxseeds are antigenic in nature that prevents the growth of malignant tumors in the body.
The seeds are rich in omega-3 fatty acids and ALA that inhibits the growth and spread of tumors and increase the probability of survival of patients afflicted with cancer.
3. Improvement in Digestion
Flaxseeds are rich in insoluble and soluble fibrous content that improves the functioning of the gastrointestinal tract. Flax Seeds benefits the system as the intestinal absorption of nutrients is improved by the mucilaginous fiber of flaxseeds.
More Resources: Home Remedies for Gastritis
4. Prevention of Cardiovascular Diseases
The omega 3 fatty acid and amino acid content of flaxseeds can control blood pressure(4), prevent the stiffening of arteries, and prevent the sedimentation of harmful plaque in the arteries.
Lignans provide protection against atherosclerosis and help to maintain healthy cardiac rhythm. The alpha-linolenic acid protects blood vessels against inflammation.
5. Reduction of Cholesterol
Consumption of flaxseeds on a daily basis can significantly reduce the level of cholesterol. The lignin, fiber and omega-3 fatty acid work in unison to get rid of cholesterol.
6. Control of Diabetes
Flaxseeds being rich in lignin can stabilize the level of blood glucose by enhancing insulin sensitivity. Consumption of a tbsp of flaxseeds on a daily basis for about a year can bring about a significant decline in insulin resistance that helps to control diabetes.
Know More: Remedies For Diabetes Mellitus
7. Fight against Inflammation
It is the deficiency of omega-3 fatty acid in the body that sparks off the inflammation. Flaxseeds are rich in lignans and ALA that block the production of pro-inflammatory agents in the body.
Daily consumption of the seeds enhances the generation of two essential omega-3 fatty acids, docosapentaenoic acid and eicosapentaenoic acid that fight against inflammation and protect the human body from all kinds of infections.
8. Reduction of Hot Flushes
Flaxseeds can powerfully control the symptoms of postmenopausal(5) and perimenopausal syndromes that include hot flushes and nausea.
Read More: Home Remedies For Nausea
9. Lignans for Skin
Flaxseeds are rich in omega-3 fatty acids and lignans that help to maintain healthy bowel movement and keep skin diseases at bay.
The omega-3 fatty acids are highly beneficial for the development of new skin cells while the lignans make the skin glow with health with the reduction of DHT levels in the body.
10. Heals Skin Damage
The omega-3 fatty acid accelerates the healing process of wounds. Regular consumption of flaxseeds reduces skin irritation, inflammation, rashes and redness of the skin and keeps acne, psoriasis, and dermatitis at bay.
11. Moisturization for Dry Skin
Dry skin is a serious skin issue and often leads to conditions like psoriasis, eczema and premature aging of the skin. Flax seeds benefit the skin as it is rich in healthy fatty acids that help to keep the skin supple and moisturized.
Regular consumption of ground flaxseeds enhances the production of natural oils that prevent the formation of wrinkles and keep the skin well hydrated.
12. Prevention of Skin Cancer
Flaxseeds are rich in antioxidants that fight poisonous free radicals, protect the skin from damage caused by the UV rays of the sun, repair broken skin tissues and thus prevent the skin from getting afflicted by cancer(6).
13. Control of Acne
Acne is caused by the over secretion of sebum, a natural skin oil secreted by the sebaceous glands of the skin. Regular consumption of ground flaxseeds inhibits the excessive secretion of sebum and thus prevents the sprouting of acne.
Read more: How to Cure Acne Papules
14. Exfoliation of Skin
Flaxseeds make for an excellent natural scrub for the exfoliation of the skin.
- Grind a tablespoon of flaxseeds into powder.
- Mix the powder with honey and yogurt to make a course and creamy scrub.
- Scrub your face, throat, and neck gently for about 10 minutes.
- Rinse your face off with lukewarm water.
The scrub gets rid of the dry dead cells and blackheads from the skin and rejuvenates the skin.
15. Flaxseeds for Weight Loss
Flaxseeds benefits weight loss(7) to a great extent. It aids in the shedding of excess body weight by accelerating the process of body metabolism, reduction of intestinal inflammation and suppressing the appetite.
16. Flaxseed for Constipation
Flaxseeds make for an amazing antidote for constipation(8). The seeds contain mucilage which forms a smooth and slimy film along the intestinal walls. This smooth coat soothes the guttural lining and facilitates the movement and excretion of hardened feces with ease.
Get More: Home Remedies for Constipation
17. Flaxseeds Prevent Dandruff
Regular consumption of flaxseeds enriches the scalp with omega 3 fatty acids that keep it from going dry and flaky. The seeds induce the production of sebum in the scalp which moisturizes the hair, makes the root strong and prevents the occurrence of dandruff.
More Resource: Natural Remedies for Dandruff
18. Prevention of Cicatricial alopecia
Flaxseeds are highly anti-inflammatory in nature which protects the hair and scalp from the disease Cicatricial alopecia(9) which is a condition of permanent loss of hair in which the hair roots and follicles get severely and irreparably damaged thus preventing the growth of new and healthy hair.
19. Prevention of Baldness
Flaxseeds are rich in alpha-linolenic acid that inhibit the action of the enzyme 5 alpha reductase that is responsible for catalyzing the conversion of testosterone into Dihydrotestosterone (DHT).
20. Improvement of Physiological Immunity
Flaxseeds benefits the immunity as it is rich in omega-3 as well as omega-6 fatty acids. When consumed, the fatty acids combine with the lignans to make for a potent booster of body immunity.
What are the side effects of flaxseeds?
A few general flaxseeds side effects include increased bowel movement, bloating, flatulence, abdominal cramps, constipation, stomachache, diarrhea(11), and nausea. Please restrict your consumption of flaxseeds if you feel any of these symptoms.
Here are two of the most amazing flaxseed recipes-
- 2 tablespoons of flaxseeds
- 1 cup of flavored soy milk
- 1 cup of chopped and chilled strawberries
- ½ a cup of chopped and refrigerated bananas
- 2 teaspoons of honey.
- Take a juicer or blender.
- Add the strawberries, flaxseeds, bananas and honey in the soya milk.
- Mix this well and then put the mixture in the blender.
- Blend the contents until they turn into a frothy and smooth liquid.
- Pour out the smoothie into a tall glass and garnish it with chopped bananas and strawberries.
- 1 cup of grated bottle gourd
- 1 cup of low-fat yogurt
- ½ a cup of chopped mint leaves
- 1/4th a teaspoon of sautéed cumin seeds
- 1/4th a teaspoon of black salt
- 2 tablespoons of roughly powdered flaxseeds
- A pinch of salt for taste.
- Mix the grated gourd with a cup of water and cook this on a low heat for about 4-5 minutes.
- Take a bowl and add all the ingredients to it including the cooked gourd.
- Mix well until the ingredients get evenly diffused in the yogurt.
- Refrigerate the flaxseed yogurt for about an hour and then serve chilled.
1. How should flaxseeds be eaten?
Response: The most beneficial way to eat flaxseed is a tablespoon of freshly ground flaxseeds on an empty stomach every morning. However, flaxseeds can also be added to your favorite salads or mixed with tasty smoothies or yogurt or chia pudding.
2. Can you eat raw flaxseed?
Response: Raw flaxseeds need to be ground into a smooth powder for the maximum absorption of nutrients and fatty acids.
3. Is raw flaxseed poisonous?
Response: No. On the contrary raw flaxseeds are highly beneficial for health.
4. Do flaxseeds help your breasts grow?
Response: Flaxseeds do help in the enhancement of breasts through the growth and development of mammary tissues.