Flaxseed came from the flax plant, known as the oldest living plant globally, and coined as one of the many superfoods. In fact, during the time of Charles the Great, he allows his men to eat flaxseed to regain their energy and strength. These tiny seeds are packed with a fantastic supply of nutrients and many health benefits of flaxseed. You need to know how to properly eat it to get the most out of its full potential.
1. Nutrients Dense Foods
Since ancient civilization, many flaxseed benefits have been known, and they are available in two types: the golden and brown color seeds. The suggested serving size of flaxseed is 1 tbsp or 7 grams, and you will only get 37 gm of calories. By consuming just one tablespoon every day, you will get your daily needs of protein, fiber, and essential omega-3 fatty acids. Aside from that, you will also benefit from its additional vitamins and minerals.
2. Rich in Omega-3 Fatty Acid
It is good news for vegetarians and vegan as they can consume flaxseed to get their much needed omega-3 fatty acids commonly found in fish. Flaxseed nutrition is different from other plants because of its ALA or alpha-linolenic acid, a plant-based fatty acid. A layman needs to understand the importance of essential fatty acid to the body. You need to get from your diet two essential fatty acids, and one is the ALA. These essential fatty acids are not produced within the body.
In animal studies, ALA resulted in the prevention of cholesterol build up in the blood vessels, reduced inflammation of the arteries, and block tumor growth. A study in humans conducted in South Africa with 3,638 participants showed that the group who consumed more ALA has a lower risk of a heart attack than those who eat less food with ALA.
3. Good Source of Lignans for Cancer Prevention
Lignans are known as plant compounds with both estrogen as well as antioxidant properties that can aid in lowering the risk of cancer. Health professionals stressed that one of the many good side effects of flaxseed is its high lignans content that is 800 times more compared to other plant food sources.
Many observational studies of eating flaxseed resulted in flaxseed benefits to decrease the risk of developing breast cancer. One study conducted in Canada shows an impressive result to 6,000 women who consumed flaxseed shows an 18% reduction in acquiring breast cancer. For men, a small study with 15 men who are asked to eat 30 grams of flaxseeds every day while in a low-fat diet shows a decreased prostate cancer marker level.
4. Dietary Fiber in Flaxseed
Many health benefits of flaxseed are linked to its soluble and insoluble fiber content. These two fibers are essential in the growth of good bacteria and give bulk to the stool to improve regular bowel movement. The soluble fiber provides consistency in the intestine and slowing down the digestion rate while the insoluble fiber binds with water making the stool softer to prevent constipation. You need to take note that as you consume this type of fibrous food, you also need to increase your fluid intake.
5. It Lowers Cholesterol
These small seeds are packed with flaxseed benefits by lowering down the cholesterol level in the body. According to a study, patients with high cholesterol who consumes three tablespoons of flaxseed powder every day for three months showed a significant decrease in their total cholesterol level by 17 percent and LDL by 20 percent.
The beneficial result is its fiber content that binds with the bile salt and then released by the body. Bile salts are replenished by pulling cholesterol into the blood by the liver, thus decreasing cholesterol levels in the blood. This benefit is just one of the many good side effects of flaxseed to overall health.
6. Rich Source of High-Grade Protein
Protein is not only found in animal sources as there is a plant-based protein that offers more benefits to health. Vegetarians and vegans know that flaxseed nutrition involves amino acid compounds such as glutamic acid, arginine, and aspartic acid. According to lab tests and animal testing, flaxseeds plant-based protein is better in improving immune system response, has anti-fungal properties, prevents tumors, and lowers cholesterol.