Flax seeds, also known as flax seeds, really have a powerful nutritional hit for their small size. These small wonders have existed since the Mesopotamian era when they were grown to obtain oil, seeds and fiber. Flax is a member of the family Linaceae, of the genus Linum, and botanically named Linum usitatissimum.
These chewable seeds are not only a nutritious and delicious addition to your diet, they also contain some valuable therapeutic properties that can help you look and feel better. Mother Nature has packed these seeds with omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, minerals and essential vitamins.
The results of the research have shown that flax seeds can help reduce the risk of fatal but preventable diseases and terms including killers such as heart disease and cancer.
Description and types
Flax is an attractive and majestic plant that has a habit of vertical growth and reaches a mature height of 3 to 5 feet while carrying beautiful light blue flowers. Flax can be grown up in a wide range of climates and thrives on fertile, well-drained soils in full sun. Flax is easy to grow and is usually in the gardens like a wild flower.
The flax fruit pod is a round, dry capsule that is 6-9 mm in diameter and contains numerous brown or slightly yellow seeds that are soft, with a bright coating and a flat shape that looks a bit like the seeds of Sesame but bigger.
There are two flax cultivars; One is grown mainly for its oil, seeds and the other for fiber. Most commercially available flax seeds are brown.
Why is ground flaxseed the best?
The body is incapable of digesting flaxseed in all its form; It simply passes through the undigested gastrointestinal tract. To benefit from the nutritional and therapeutic value of whole flax, it must be ground. You can use a coffee grinder or even a powerful food processor to grind the seeds. Once you kill them, the seeds will go rancid very quickly, so it's a good idea to store them in the refrigerator in an airtight container and use them a few days after grinding them. If your flax meal ever tastes bitter, it is likely to be old and must be discarded. The food should always have a nutty and fresh flavor.
Health benefits of flax seeds
Research continues to discover more and more about the medicinal benefits of humble flaxseed. These are just some of the ways in which flaxseed can improve your health.
1. Reduce the risk of cancer
Cancer kills 7.6 million people around the world. However, the lignans (chemical compounds) found in flaxseed have antioxidant properties that can help keep cancer at bay. In numerous studies in animals, it has been shown that lignans shrink cancerous tumors, and have also been used to treat both chest and prostate cancer in humans. It is also believed that lignans help lower the risk of developing hormone-related cancers, including prostate and ovarian cancer.
2. Promotes healthy skin and hair
If you want to improve the health and appearance of your skin and hair, you should consume flaxseed regularly. Flaxseed contains ALA fats (alpha-linolenic acid). These omega-3 fatty acids help hydrate your scalp and nourish your hair. They improve the elasticity of the hair, which leads to less breakage and can help to reduce dandruff and other conditions of the scalp.
In addition, the anti-inflammatory properties in flax seeds prevent the condition of permanent hair loss known as Cicatricial Alopecia.
These same omega-3 fatty acids help increase the speed at which wounds heal. Flaxseed is known for its high anti-inflammatory properties. The daily consumption of flaxseed minimizes skin irritations, rashes, inflammation and redness. Eating flax seeds also helps reduce the likelihood of acne, dermatitis and psoriasis.
To reap the health benefits of linseed oil, you can mix it with essential oils and use it as a moisturizer. You can also take the oil internally; Two spoonfuls will do the trick. For a totally natural and highly effective exfoliant, prepare an exfoliant with ground flax seeds. Mix the flaxseed powder with a little natural yogurt and raw honey, rub it on the skin in circular motions for about ten minutes and rinse it with warm water. Dry with a clean dry towel. The exfoliant removes dead skin cells and leaves it soft and silky.
3. Improve satiety
Linseed consumption helps keep snacks away. Because it contains soluble fiber that swells in the stomach after absorbing several liquids, flaxseed fills you up quickly and makes you feel full longer. If you are prone to snack attacks late at night, eating flaxseed throughout the day can help reduce these cravings and promote a healthy weight loss.
4. Improve the absorption of nutrients
The ability of the digestive tract to absorb nutrients can be reduced over time if you eat a highly processed diet. Flaxseed helps improve the absorption of nutrients in the digestive tract in several ways. As mentioned above, flax is rich in soluble fiber that acts as a glue, retains food in the stomach for longer and, therefore, helps the absorption of nutrients.
The fiber in flax is also known to help clean the lining of the intestines and eliminate toxins and waste. This means that all the parts that absorb nutrients from the intestine get an increase in efficiency.
5. Regulate hormones
Flaxseed contains powerful hormonal regulation capabilities. The main ingredient in flax, lignans, are chemical compounds known as phytoestrogens. They mimic the natural properties of estrogen when consumed and, therefore, work to complete the various functions associated with the hormone. For women going through menopause, they can be used to supplement their natural levels of estrogen. They can also help to substantially reduce the risk of osteoporosis. In addition, consuming the seeds can help women who menstruate to maintain a regular cycle. To ensure you get these benefits of flaxseed, you should consume approximately two tablespoons every day.
6. Regulate cholesterol
According to the Mayo Clinic, eating flaxseed regularly can help lower your cholesterol, which will also reduce your risk of heart disease. In a 2010 study published in Nutrition Research, it was discovered that 100 mg of flaxseed lignan can lower cholesterol levels in men with moderately high cholesterol levels. In another study, 40 patients with high cholesterol levels were instructed to take 20 grams of ground flaxseed per day. These results were compared with a group taking medications with statins, and it was found that those who took the flax did as well as those who took the drugs.
7. Replace the regular flour
People who usually experience stomach problems after consuming gluten or simply want an alternative can choose flaxseed. Flaxseed in ground form can be used as flour for cooking without grain in combination with other types of gluten-free flour such as coconut flour.
8. Help with constipation
Daily consumption of 1 to 3 tablespoons of flaxseed oil can help relieve constipation naturally. Since flaxseed contains a large amount of fiber, it helps food move through the digestive tract easily, thus reducing the risk of constipation. It is also known that the fiber in flax seed improves the formation and survival of several types of bacteria that are harmless to the intestine that improve intestinal health in general.
9. Increase antioxidant levels
Regular consumption of flaxseed will help increase your normal intake of natural antioxidants. These have anti-aging capabilities, improve cell health and even regulate hormones.
10. Balance of blood sugar
Flaxseed helps balance blood sugar and may play a role in preventing diabetes. Adding flax to your diet also helps prevent spikes in your blood sugar. In one study, diabetic participants who consumed one tablespoon of milled flax daily for one month had a smaller decrease in fasting sugars, triglycerides and cholesterol compared to the control group. In addition, the group that consumed flax also had a fall in A1C levels.
11. Contrary effects of radiation
It has been found that regular consumption of flaxseed helps reduce the effect of radiation on the skin. The main properties of flaxseed that provide this protection are its anti-inflammatory nature and its high levels of antioxidants.
12. Rich in vitamins and minerals
Flaxseed is rich in a variety of healthy vitamins and minerals that work to provide you with better overall health. Some of the main minerals in flaxseed include selenium, magnesium, phosphorus, manganese, potassium, copper, iron and zinc. The vitamins found in flaxseed include vitamin B1 and B6 All these nutrients have a positive boost in essential body processes.
13. Promote immunity
Regular consumption of flaxseed helps to maintain the optimal function of the immune system. Flaxseed is loaded with iron that helps with the transport of oxygen throughout the body and to organs and cells. Iron helps fight infections by providing the immune system with a lot of oxygen. Oxygen is also vital for the maintenance of energy and to keep your body strong and healthy.
Together, omega-3 fatty acids and lignans in flax help keep white blood cells strong so they can fight the disease. Since lignans are known to contain effective antiviral and antibacterial properties, it is reasonable to expect that regular consumption can help the body fight common flu and colds.
14. Reduce inflammation
Inflammation in the body is necessary to facilitate healing. However, free radicals and other negative elements can cause severe inflammation that subsequently leads to physical damage to the body. If left unchecked, inflammation can cause serious damage to the body that manifests itself in a variety of conditions, including arthritis.
The good news is that you may be able to deal with this inflammation simply by including flaxseed in your diet. The lignans and omega 3 fatty acids found in flaxseed help reduce this inflammation, as well as increase the rate of healing when necessary.
How to eat more flax seeds:
Here are just some ways to add more flaxseed to your diet.
Use flaxseed as an egg substitute in baked goods. Sprinkle flaxseed on yogurt, cottage cheese, cereal, oats and rice. Add the flaxseed to your smoothies. Add flaxseed to soups, curries and casseroles.
Reference: https://www.naturallivingideas.com/flaxseed-benefits/, by Susan Patterson
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