FLEX with FLAX

I consider flaxseed as the best source of plant-based Omega 3 fatty acid which is also known as Alpha linolenic acid (ALA). I use it when available in my whey protein mix to help boost up in my essential fatty acids intake. I also find it particularly useful to ground some flaxseed to be added into cooked or steamed veggie dishes. The use of flaxseed in our diet is limitless. (have always wanted to try coating pieces of fish fillet or chicken fillet with flaxseed, wonder how it will turn out)

Let’s see what has flaxseed got to offer.

Well for a history lesson, flaxseed has been around for the last 4,000 years and has been known for its healthful benefits. Although gone into obscurity throughout the years, flaxseed is making a comeback with a vengeance. Many modern scientific studies concludes or suggests that flaxseed can be effective in combating LDL cholesterol, reduces triglycerides, blood pressure and even lower incidence of breast cancer.

Besides ALA, flaxseed has 2 other components lignan and fiber. Lignan is a type of phytoestrogen (antioxidant). This powerful property can bind estrogen receptors, hence inhibiting the onset of estrogen-stimulated breast cancer.

In a small Canadian study of 39 women, for example, researchers from the University of Toronto found that flaxseed may boost conventional treatment for breast cancer. In the study, reported in the American Institute for Cancer Research Newsletter in 1998, postmenopausal women with breast cancer ate either a plain muffin or a muffin ocntaining 25 grams of flaxseed oil every day for approximately five-and-a-half weeks. Of the 29 out of the 39 women who ate both muffins, researchers found reductions in the growth of their tumors.

There  is also research on populations which has higher amounts of lignan in their diets has lower incidence of breast cancer and colon cancer. Flaxseed is 100 times richer in lignan content than any other whole grains!

To appreciate the benefits of flaxseed, I would recommend that you look up Essential Fatty Acids andread more about it.

Other benefits of flaxseed includes:

  1. Helps protect the body against high blood pressure, inflammation, water retention, sticky platelets and lowered immune function.
  2. Studies show that Omega-3 fatty acids help lower cholesterol and blood triglycerides, and prevent clots in arteries, which may result in strokes, heart attacks and thromboses.
  3. Shortens recovery time for fatigued muscles after exertion.
  4. Increases the body’s production of energy and also increases stamina.
  5. Accelerates the healing of sprains and bruises.
  6. Eases weight loss in people afflicted with obesity.
  7. Stimulates brown fat cells and increases the metabolic rate making it easier to burn off fat.
  8. Improves the absorption of Calcium.
  9. Strengthens finger and toenails.
  10. Can improve eyesight and perception of colors.
  11. Can often improve the function of the liver.
  12. Can relieve the side effects and stop development of many forms of cancer.
  13. Can relieve some cases of Asthma.
  14. Helpful in the treatment of Eczema, Psoriasis, and Dandruff.
  15. Can relieve the symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis. It can relieve the symptoms of Diabetes Mellitus.
  16. Can alleviate some allergies.
  17. Helps prevent Atherosclerosis (the accumulation of fatty deposits inside the blood vessels, especially the large and medium-sized arteries, that many people experience during the aging process).
  18. Lowers high blood pressure in Hypertension sufferers.
  19. Has been scientifically proven to treat some cases of depression.
  20. Can improve the mental function of many old age pensioners.
  21. Can help in the treatment of Multiple Sclerosis.
  22. Has been proven to improve the behavior of Schizophrenics.
  23. Can relieve some cases of Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) in females.

Point to note

alpha linolenic acid (ALA) found in flaxseed, an omega-3 fat that is a precursor to the form of omega-3 found in fish oils called eicosapentaenoic acid or EPA. Since the fats are found in their isolated form in flaxseed oil, it is a more concentrated source of ALA than the seeds themselves (although it doesn’t have the other nutrients that the seeds do). ALA, in addition to providing several beneficial effects of its own, can be converted in the body to EPA, thus providing EPA’s beneficial effects. For this conversion to readily take place, however, depends on the presence and activity of an enzyme called delta-6-destaurase, which, in some individuals, is less available or less active than in others. In addition, delta-6-desaturase function is inhibited in diabetes and by the consumption of saturated fat and alcohol. For these reasons, higher amounts of ALA-rich flaxseeds or its oil must be consumed to provide the same benefits as the omega-3 fats found in the oil of cold-water fish.

Sounds good? Try some today! Get it at your local organic store or if you prefer supplementation get your flaxseed oil from your reliable supplier.


In-depth nutrient analysis:

Flaxseeds
(Note: “–” indicates data is unavailable)

amount

2.00 tbs

total weight

19.38 g

Basic Components

nutrient

amount

%DV

calories

95.33

5.30

calories from fat

59.29

calories from saturated fat

5.57

protein

3.78 g

7.56

carbohydrates

6.64 g

2.21

dietary fiber

5.41 g

21.64

soluble fiber

— g

insoluble fiber

— g

sugar – total

— g

monosaccharides

— g

disaccharides

— g

other carbs

— g

fat – total

6.59 g

10.14

saturated fat

0.62 g

3.10

mono fat

1.33 g

5.54

poly fat

4.35 g

18.12

trans fatty acids

0.00 g

cholesterol

0.00 mg

0.00

water

1.70 g

ash

0.68 g

Vitamins

nutrient

amount

%DV

vitamin A IU

0.00 IU

0.00

vitamin A RE

0.00 RE

A – carotenoid

0.00 RE

0.00

A – retinol

0.00 RE

A – beta carotene

0.00 mcg

thiamin – B1

0.03 mg

2.00

riboflavin – B2

0.03 mg

1.76

niacin – B3

0.27 mg

1.35

niacin equiv

0.27 mg

vitamin B6

0.18 mg

9.00

vitamin B12

0.00 mcg

0.00

biotin

— mcg

vitamin C

0.25 mg

0.42

vitamin D IU

— IU

vitamin D mcg

— mcg

vitamin E alpha equiv

0.97 mg

4.85

vitamin E IU

1.44 IU

vitamin E mg

0.97 mg

folate

53.86 mcg

13.46

vitamin K

0.00 mcg

0.00

pantothenic acid

0.30 mg

3.00

Minerals

nutrient

amount

%DV

boron

— mcg

calcium

38.56 mg

3.86

chloride

— mg

chromium

— mcg

copper

0.20 mg

10.00

fluoride

— mg

iodine

— mcg

iron

1.21 mg

6.72

magnesium

70.14 mg

17.54

manganese

0.64 mg

32.00

molybdenum

— mcg

phosphorus

96.49 mg

9.65

potassium

131.94 mg

3.77

selenium

1.07 mcg

1.53

sodium

6.59 mg

0.27

zinc

0.81 mg

5.40

Saturated Fats

nutrient

amount

%DV

4:0 butyric

0.00 g

6:0 caproic

0.00 g

8:0 caprylic

0.00 g

10:0 capric

0.00 g

12:0 lauric

0.00 g

14:0 myristic

0.00 g

15:0 pentadecanoic

0.00 g

16:0 palmitic

0.35 g

17:0 margaric

0.00 g

18:0 stearic

0.27 g

20:0 arachidic

0.00 g

22:0 behenate

0.00 g

24:0 lignoceric

0.00 g

Mono Fats

nutrient

amount

%DV

14:1 myristol

0.00 g

15:1 pentadecenoic

0.00 g

16:1 palmitol

0.00 g

17:1 heptadecenoic

0.00 g

18:1 oleic

1.33 g

20:1 eicosen

0.00 g

22:1 erucic

0.00 g

24:1 nervonic

0.00 g

Poly Fats

nutrient

amount

%DV

18:2 linoleic

0.84 g

18:3 linolenic

3.51 g

18:4 stearidon

0.00 g

20:3 eicosatrienoic

0.00 g

20:4 arachidon

0.00 g

20:5 EPA

0.00 g

22:5 DPA

0.00 g

22:6 DHA

0.00 g

Other Fats

nutrient

amount

%DV

omega 3 fatty acids

3.51 g

146.25

omega 6 fatty acids

0.84 g

Amino Acids

nutrient

amount

%DV

alanine

— g

arginine

— g

aspartate

— g

cystine

— g

glutamate

— g

glycine

— g

histidine

— g

isoleucine

— g

leucine

— g

lysine

— g

methionine

— g

phenylalanine

— g

proline

— g

serine

— g

threonine

— g

tryptophan

— g

tyrosine

— g

valine

— g

Other

nutrient

amount

%DV

alcohol

0.00 g

caffeine

0.00 mg

artif sweetener total

0.00 mg

aspartame

0.00 mg

saccharin

0.00 mg

sugar alcohol

— g

glycerol

— g

inositol

— g

mannitol

— g

sorbitol

— g

xylitol

— g

organic acids

— mg

acetic acid

— mg

citric acid

— mg

lactic acid

— mg

malic acid

— mg

choline

— mg

taurine

— mg

Note: The nutrient profiles provided in this website are derived from Food Processor for Windows, Version 7.60, by ESHA Research in Salem, Oregon, USA. Of the 21,629 food records contained in the ESHA foods database, most of them – including those of the World’s Healthiest Foods – lacked information for specific nutrients. The designation “–” was chosen to represent those nutrients for which there was no measurement included in the ESHA foods database.

References

http://www.healthcastle.com/flax.shtml

www.webmd.com/diet/features/benefits-of-flaxseed

www.essortment.com/all/whatisflaxsee_pfy.htm

http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=81

Recommended websites for further information

http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=81

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4 Responses

  1. flax seed is nearly as sago or agar agar i think
    why don’t put up the way 2 consume it?
    or recipe?
    or maybe the time 2 be in digestion
    and a time table or suitable time 2 consume.: )

    • Flax seed as sago or agar-agar? Hmm… seeaer have you ate flax seed before?
      Anyway flax seed is best consume after its pounded or blended in a blender down to powder form… this is because if we to eat the seed as it is it would not be digested properly and its nutrient like lignan cannot be absorbed by the body.
      #2 Flax seed can be consumed anytime! Remember it is a natural food… don’t treat it as a supplement or medication.
      #3 Flax seed in its powder form can be added to fruit juices, protein powder or even Milo… you can also sprinkle it over a bowl of hot or cold cereal, cooked vegetables, soups… that’s how I use flaxseed… no recipe here… or you can look up the Net for delicious flax seed cupcakes or cookies… (sorry cooking is not my thing so I do not attempt to dish out recipes)
      Thank you for your comment seeaer….. 🙂 …. i’ll look up for more info on flaxseed soon… it is still lying somewhere in my pile of books….

  2. thank you for replying ..: )
    sorry : P
    i think i take it wrongly
    i know flax seed actually but i had faked my mind thinking it as
    Plantago Seed(plantain seed)车前籽
    and actually i am very like 2 eat the flex seed bread(just like wholemeal bread) that my aunt recently baked.
    sorry again but i think i am 2 much want 2 find about 2 consume dietary fiber these days(2 keep fit) and i mixed up wit it .
    actually there is a jar of plantago seed’s sack in my fridge
    it is just like agar or sago after added wit water
    so …: P
    i have experience that (my aunt was a food prepare there) in health farm(majorly for cancers sufferers ) 2 years ago
    and the flex seed i think is called 亚麻籽
    is widely used there as it is a good way nutritious and many in dietary fiber and good source of unsaturated fat acids(that body cell needed 2 built up and restore)…
    I’ve been reading an articles about the unprocessed food are more nutritious so i am also finding the way 2 consume food without processing it (but delicious)
    that’s why i am always asking for recipe nowadays…hehe
    now i am far from these organic food as working in canteen
    for daily job haiz….need 2 keep fit
    sorry again!: P best wishes

  3. Good luck in your healthy adventure… 🙂

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