Serving Size for Flax Seeds = 1-2 Tsp (ground)
Dietary fibre from flaxseed suppresses rises in blood levels of lipids after a meal and modulates appetite.
University of Copenhagen researchers report that flax fibre suppresses appetite and helps support weight loss.
Flax has been cultivated for centuries and has been celebrated for its usefulness all over the world. Hippocrates (460BC) wrote about using flax for the relief of abdominal pains, and the French Emperor Charlemagne favoured flax seed so much that he passed laws requiring its consumption!
The main health benefits of flax seed are due to its rich content of Alpha-Linolenic Acid (ALA), dietary fibre, and lignans.
The essential fatty acid ALA is a powerful anti-inflammatory, decreasing the production of agents that promote inflammation and lowering blood levels of C-Reactive Protein (CRP), a biomarker of inflammation. Through the actions of the ALA and lignans, flax has been shown to block tumour growth in animals and may help reduce cancer risk in humans.
Lignans are phytoestrogens, plant compounds that have estrogenic-like effects and antioxidant properties. Phytoestrogens help to stabilize hormonal levels, reducing the symptoms of PMS and menopause, and potentially reducing the risk of developing breast and prostate cancer.
The fibre in flax seed promotes healthy bowel function. One tablespoon of whole flax seed contains as much fibre as half a cup of cooked oat bran. Flax’s soluble fibres can lower blood cholesterol levels, helping reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke.
Ground flax seed provides more nutritional benefits than does the whole seed. Grind the seeds at home using a coffee grinder or blender, and add them to cereals, baked goods and smoothies.