Although it contains a relatively high amount of fat, flaxseed is packed with essential nutrients and a ton of flavor.
- ...is packed with dietary fiber.100 grams of flaxseed already contains 22.7 grams of dietary fiber, almost a whole day’s recommended intake. Even just 2 tablespoons of flaxseed in cereal or yogurt delivers a considerable amount of essential fiber.
- ...helps protect the blood vessels.90 percent of the fat in flaxseed comprises omega-3 and other unsaturated fatty acids. These fatty acids are great for the body, helping keep cholesterol levels at a healthy balance and prevent harmful deposits. These vital fatty acids also combat unpleasant inflammations in the body and thus can help protect against heart attacks and strokes.
- ...is great for the heart.Flaxseed contains particularly high levels of potassium. This mineral regulates the fluid balance in the body and supports a healthy heart.
- ...contains a lot of magnesium.If you feel stressed or have to perform great mental and physical efforts, you should not skimp on flaxseed. The seeds are full of minerals like magnesium that support nervous system, brain and muscle health.
- ...is not safe for babies.For babies and smaller children, flaxseed’s high amounts of prussic acid might be dangerous.
What You Should Know About Flaxseed
With its powerful healing properties, flaxseed has played an important role in folk medicine for centuries. The mucilages in flaxseed coat the stomach, which can help calm a nervous stomach. Another part of the fibre in flaxseed swells in the intestines and can accelerate the passage of the food. At the same time, the mucilages lubricate the intestinal walls and can help with constipation.
Flaxseed is also said to have a calming effect on colic and even heal inflammations in the intestines. The abundant fats in flaxseed consist of over 70 percent polyunsaturated fatty acids. When combined with flaxseed’s high content of vitamin E, these substances can help regulate excessive cholesterol levels. Flaxseed also contains a relatively large amount of bone-strengthening calcium.
How Healthy Is Flaxseed?
Flaxseed is packed with important nutrients and antioxidants. This powerful seed also has a high content of polyunsaturated fatty acids, as well as vitamin B1, magnesium and the trace element manganese.
With 488 calories per 100 gram serving, flaxseed is very high in calories, equal to some varieties of red meat.
Flaxseed’s plant fibers support a healthy intestinal flora, serving as fuel for useful gut bacteria.
Thanks to special active ingredients, the lignans, the probability of developing breast and prostate cancer is reduced. Just a teaspoonful of flaxseed per day provides the protective effect.
Regular consumption of flaxseed can also lower blood pressure and may help lower chances of developing certain cancers such as breast or prostate.
|Flaxseed Nutritional Info (100 g)|
Shopping and Cooking Tips
Flaxseed can be purchased in health food stores. Remember to only buy small quantities, as flaxseed won’t keep for more than 6 months. If you’re purchasing the flaxseed in whole seeds, not crushed, it can generally stay fresh for a few more months. However remember to always crush the flaxseed before eating, as this releases its potent vitamins and minerals.
Flaxseed’s high fat content means it can turn rancid relatively quickly. To ensure maximum freshness, its best to store flaxseed in a cool place and to consume it as quickly as possible.
What To Make With Flaxseed
Flaxseed is delicious in a variety of ways. Throw some on your breakfast cereal or yogurt to add a healthful crunch, or as a heart-healthy ingredient in bread. Flaxseed also pairs well with savory dishes, especially in salads.