For centuries now, flaxseed has been known for its astounding health benefits. In fact, it is now a so-called superfood, since more and more scientific research has proven its health benefits. These benefits include fighting off illnesses and disease, diabetes, asthma, allergies, arthritis, inflammation and cardiovascular conditions. Furthermore, flaxseed also helps reduce the risk of some types of cancers and improves reproductive health in females. If you want to learn more about flaxseed, give this article a read.
What is Flaxseeds?
Flax seeds are tiny, brown seeds also known as linseeds. Their health benefits make them a traditional part of Asian, African and American cuisine. Although they can be eaten raw, they are more beneficial when they are grounded or sprouted into tasty meals, as the body can absorb more nutrients from the seed this way. Flax seeds are used in flaxseed oil, which is also easy to absorb and digest.
Flaxseed is touted as one of the most powerful plants on earth. Evidence shows it may help reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes, stroke and cancer. This is impressive for its small size.
The plant was first cultured in Babylon in 3000 BC. In the 8th century King Charlemagne strongly believed in its health benefits. In fact, he passed laws that required his subjects to consume it. In today’s day and age, some experts say we have evidence to support his beliefs. It’s a good thing the substance is so readily available, with items such as crackers, waffles and oatmeal made from it. As consumer demand has grown, so has its agricultural use. Flaxseed is used to feed the chickens that lay eggs with higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids.
What’s in Flaxseed?
Even though the flaxseed has many healthy components, it owes its healthy reputation to three main ones:
- Fiber: the seed has both insoluble and soluble fiber.
- Omega-3 fatty acids: these good fats have been shown to have a positive effect on heart health. In fact, every tablespoon of ground flaxseed has about 1.8 grams of the essential fatty acids.
- Lignans: this has both antioxidant and estrogen qualities, and flaxseed has anywhere between 75 to 800x more lignans than any other plant.
Nutritional Facts of Flaxseeds
Flaxseed is an excellent source of lignans, fiber, linoleic acid and ALA, or alpha-linolenic acid. These are omega-3 essential fatty acids, which are beneficial for the health.
A 1 teaspoon serving, or about 2.5 grams, of flaxseed has:
Health Benefits of Flaxseeds
Here are some of the most astounding health benefits of flaxseeds:
- Helps boost the immune system: the lignans and alpha-linolenic acid of flaxseed are beneficial in boosting the body’s immune response and preventing inflammatory diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, autoimmune diseases and psoriasis.
- Helps fight inflammation: the omega-3 fatty acids in the seeds are beneficial in getting rid of inflammation in the body.
- Helps prevent various cardiovascular illnesses: the C-glycosides flavone in the flaxseeds are essential in preventing various cardiovascular illnesses.
- Good source of protein: there are dietary proteins in flaxseeds. These are essential amino acids that provide most of the daily protein intake that the body needs.
- Helps improve overall health: the vitamin B complex in flaxseed is beneficial in improving skin and bone health. Furthermore, the potassium in it also helps maintain nerve health.
- Helps improve gastrointestinal health: both the soluble and insoluble fiber in flaxseed helps maintain gastrointestinal functions.
- Helps prevent cancer: the antioxidant properties of flaxseed are beneficial in preventing the onset of cancer. Not only that, the lignans in the seeds helps balance hormones in the body.
Flaxseeds are astounding. They are not just a delicious ingredient; they are also good for the health.