Alsee or Flex seeds – Linum usitatissimum
Flax seeds have been consumed as food for around 6,000 years and may have very well been the world’s first cultivated superfood!
Flaxseed benefits could help you improve digestion, give you clear skin, lower cholesterol, reduce sugar cravings, balance hormones, fight cancer and promote weight loss… and that’s just the beginning!
Flaxseeds, sometimes called linseeds, are small, brown, tan or golden-coloured seeds that are the richest sources of plant-based omega-3 fatty acids, called alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) in the world!
Stunning Flaxseed Nutrition Facts
When you look at the nutritional benefits of flax seeds, there are many things that will catch your attention.
A 1 ounce (3 tbsp) serving of flaxseeds contains:
- Omega-3(ALA) 6,338mg
- Protein 6g
- Vitamin B131% RDA
- Manganese 35% RDA
- Magnesium30% RDA
- Phosphorus19% RDA
- Selenium10% RDA
- Also, flaxseeds contain a good amount of vitamin B6, Iron, potassium, copper and zinc.
This flaxseed nutrition profile makes it easy to see why it’s one of the most nutrient-dense foods on the planet.
High in Fiber, but Low in Carbs
One of the most extraordinary benefits of flax seeds is that they contain high levels of mucilage gum content. Mucilage is a gel-forming fibre that is water-soluble and has incredible benefits on the intestinal tract.
The mucilage can keep food in the stomach from emptying too quickly into the small intestine which can increase nutrient absorption.
Also, flax is extremely high in both soluble and insoluble fibre which can support colon detoxification, fat loss and reduce sugar cravings.
You should aim to consume 30-40 g of high fibre foods daily.
Healthy Skin and Hair
If you want healthier skin, hair and nails then consider adding 2 tbsp of flax seeds to your smoothie or 1 tbsp of flaxseed oil to your daily routine.
The ALA fats in flax seeds benefit the skin and hair by providing essential fats as well as b-vitamins which can help reduce dryness and flakiness. It can also improve symptoms of acne, rosacea, and eczema. This also applies to eye health as flax can reduce dry eye syndrome.
Since flax is full of healthy fats and fibre, it will help you feel satisfied longer so you will eat fewer calories overall which may lead to weight loss. ALA fats may also help reduce inflammation.
The Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism found that adding flax seeds into your diet can naturally reduce cholesterol levels.
The soluble fibre content of flax seeds traps fat and cholesterol in the digestive system so that it unable to be absorbed. Soluble fibre also traps bile, which is made from cholesterol in the gallbladder.
The bile is then excreted through the digestive system, forcing the body to make more, using up excess cholesterol in the blood and lowering cholesterol overall.
Flaxseeds are Gluten-Free
Using flax is a great way to naturally replace gluten-containing grains which are inflammatory where flax is anti-inflammatory. So, flax seeds are great for those who have Celiac disease or have a gluten-sensitivity. They may also be a good alternative to omega-3 fats in fish for people with a seafood allergy.
Flaxseeds are high in Antioxidants (Lignans)
Amongst its other incredible nutrition facts, flax seeds are also packed with antioxidants. Lignans are unique fiber-related polyphenols that provide us with antioxidant benefits for anti-aging, hormone balance and cellular health.
Lignans are also known for their anti-viral and antibacterial properties, therefore consuming flax regularly may help reduce the number or severity of colds and flus.
Maybe the biggest flax seed benefits come from its ability to promote digestive health. The ALA in flax can help protect the lining of the digestive tract and maintain GI health. It has been shown to be beneficial for people suffering from Crohn’s disease or other digestive ailments, as it can help reduce gut inflammation.
Two tablespoons of flaxseeds contain about 5 g of fibre or 1/4 of the RDA. The fibre found in flaxseeds provides food for friendly bacteria in your colon that can help cleanse waste from your system
Flax Seeds for Cancer
Flaxseed benefits have been proven time and time again and even including fighting breast, prostate, ovarian and colon cancer.
The lignans in the flax have been shown to have benefits for menopausal women. It can be used as an alternative to hormone replacement therapy because lignans do have estrogenic properties.
These properties may also help reduce the risk of osteoporosis. It can even help menstruating women by helping maintain cycle regularity.