Flaxseed | Flaxseed health benefits, Nutrition and How to eat



Flax or linseed which botanical name is Linum usitatissimum, is a flowering plant in the family Linaceae. It is cultivated as a food and fibre crop in temperate climate zones all over the world. Linseed oil is the name of its oil. The term "flax" can also be used to describe the flax plant's unspun fibres. The plant species, sometimes known as pale flax, is only known as a cultivated plant and is thought to have only ever been domesticated once from the wild species Linum bienne. In contrast, the "flax" plants found in New Zealand are actually Phormium species.

Flaxseed different names in India

Flax is referred to by a number of names in Indian languages, including Alsi in Hindi, Ali Vitai in Tamil, Avise ginja in Telugu, and Caavitt in Malayalam. Other names include Akse bija and Jawas. The Latin name for the Alsi is Linum usitatissimum, which translates to "extremely useful."

Flaxseed Health Benefits

A plant-based food called flaxseed contains fibre, antioxidants, and healthy fat. It is also referred to as a "Super Food" which is packed with multiple nutrients and vitamins for better health and immunity.

In the modern world, flaxseed is sold as seeds, oils, powder, tablets, capsules, and flour. People take it as a dietary supplement to fight or prevent different types of serious illnesses, including cancer, diabetes, high cholesterol, heart disease, and constipation.

Ancient Egypt and China both cultivated flax as a crop. It has been utilised for countless years in Ayurvedic medicine in Asia.

Flax Seeds for Weight Loss

If you want to reduce or maintain your weight, flax seeds must be a part of your diet. The main reason for this is its high fibre content. Due to fiber's tendency to satisfy your hunger, you eat fewer calories each day. In other words we can say that flax seeds help us to feel full, which in turn helps to control our appetite resulting less eating of other foods. You avoid binge eating or less eating to satisfy your hunger as a result.

If you want to cut back on your food intake or experience the temptation to snack in between meals, flax seeds might be a terrific addition to your diet. Additionally, flax seeds can reduce your hunger. You can include flax seeds in your meals if you're wondering how to use them for weight loss, especially for breakfast.

According to a study, putting 2.5 grammes of powdered flax seeds in your beverages may help you feel less hungry and have a smaller appetite overall. Due to their high soluble fibre content, flax seeds slow down digestion in the stomach, which releases several hormones that regulate appetite. As a result, flax seeds help you feel fuller for longer periods of time, which eventually aids in weight loss.

Additionally, researchers found that including whole flaxseed in your diet can reduce waist circumference, body weight, and body mass index after analysing a total of 45 studies in 2017. (BMI).

Flax Seeds Contains Omega-3 Fatty Acids.

Flax seeds are a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential for your body to perform at its peak. Omega-3 fatty acids are present in one tablespoon of powdered flax seeds in amounts of about 1.8 grammes. Alpha-linolenic acid, also known as ALA, is a form of omega-3 fatty acid that is predominantly derived from plants and is also abundant in these seeds.

ALA is not naturally produced by our bodies. Therefore, we must receive it from outside sources, such as the food we consume. According to a study, eating ALA may reduce your risk of having a heart attack. Additionally, research implies that alpha-Linolenic acid is a suitable substitute for fatty acids in terms of cardioprotection. A other investigation connects ALA to a lower risk of stroke. Additionally, it aids in the prevention of atherosclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, and asthma.

Flax Seeds May Lower Risk of Cancer

Lignans are plant chemicals with estrogenic and antioxidant effects, and flaxseeds are highly high in them. These substances are incredibly helpful in enhancing general health and are known to lessen the chance of acquiring several types of cancer. Flax seeds contain up to 800 times more lignans than other plant-based diets.

Flax seeds may help reduce the incidence of breast cancer, particularly in premenopausal women, according to an observational study. In breast cancer patients, it can also slow the growth of tumours. Studies have also shown that eating flax seeds regularly can reduce your risk of getting skin, colon, and prostate cancer.

Control Blood Pressure

One of the many advantages of flax seeds is that they can significantly lower blood pressure. They therefore benefit those who have high blood pressure the greatest.

According to a study, persons who consumed 30 grammes of flaxseeds daily for six months saw a 10 mm Hg reduction in their systolic blood pressure. Their diastolic blood pressure dropped by 7 mm Hg during this time. The drop in blood pressure was much greater in patients who were already using blood pressure medication.

Flax Seeds Contain Dietary Fibre

Fibre comes in two basic varieties: soluble fibre and insoluble fibre. Your digesting process is slowed down by soluble fibre. Additionally, it makes the various intestinal contents more consistent. It also aids in lowering cholesterol and controlling blood sugar.

Insoluble fibre permits more water to adhere to the faeces, softening them. As a result, it has a laxative effect and aids in relieving constipation. Additionally, it benefits those who suffer from diarrhoea or irritable bowel syndrome. Overall, the dietary fibre found in flax seeds promotes regular bowel movements and enhances the condition of the digestive system.

Flax Seeds Are Rich In High-Quality Protein

Flax seeds are a great source of plant-based, high-quality proteins that are rich in amino acids, glutamic acid, and aspartic acid. Those who are vegetarian or vegan can receive their protein from it.

Studies have shown that protein from flax seeds helps lower cholesterol levels, enhance the immune system, and prevent the growth of tumours. Furthermore, flax seeds have antimicrobial qualities.

Lowers Cholesterol Levels

One of flax seeds' advantages is that they can reduce cholesterol levels. It's because of how much fibre they contain. According to a study, patients with high cholesterol may observe a 17% drop in their cholesterol levels after consuming flaxseed powder every day for three months. The "bad" LDL cholesterol levels may decrease by almost 20% at the same time.

Another study showed that ingesting one tablespoon of flaxseed powder every day for a month caused the "good" HDL cholesterol in persons with diabetes to rise by 12%. Thus, it suggests that flaxseeds are beneficial for those who have type 2 diabetes as well.


Control Blood Sugar

The next food that people with diabetes should include in their diet is flax seeds. It is because flax seeds contain fibre, which may reduce blood sugar levels. According to research, the insoluble fibre in flax seeds can delay the absorption of sugar into the blood. Consequently, it might aid in lowering blood sugar levels.

Another study on individuals with type 2 diabetes revealed that blood sugar levels were reduced by 8–20% in those who took 10–20 grammes of flaxseed powder daily for a month.

Flax Seeds are rich in Vitamin E

Vitamin E is an essential component of flax seeds' wealth of vitamins and minerals. Vitamin E is an antioxidant that helps in lowering blood pressure. Additionally, it can lower the risk of developing certain cancers, heart disease, and dementia. By promoting sodium excretion in the urine, consumption of flaxseed avoid above deadly deseases.

Additionally, flaxseed prevents the stomach from producing cancer-causing nitrosamines. As a result, it guards against cancer. Additionally, it improves the health of skin and hair, as vitamin E is very important for healthy skin and hair.

Other Health Benefits

Omega-3 fatty acids and lignans in flax seeds give them their anti-inflammatory qualities. Lignans also assist in lowering the risk of heart disease and the metabolic syndrome. This is as a result of them lowering blood sugar and fat levels. Since flax seeds contain both tryptophan and omega-3 fatty acids, they can also increase your serotonin levels.

Flaxseed Nutrition Facts

7% of flax seeds are water, 18% are protein, 29% are carbs, and 42% are fat. Flax seeds have a high concentration (20% or more of the Daily Value, DV) of protein, dietary fibre, many B vitamins, and dietary minerals in a serving size of 100 grammes, which equals 534 kilocalories. Thiamine, magnesium, and phosphorus are particularly abundant in flax seeds (DVs exceeding 90%).

Flax seeds contain 9% saturated fat, including 5% as palmitic acid, and 54% omega-3 fatty acids (mainly ALA), 18% omega-9 fatty acids (oleic acid), and 6% omega-6 fatty acids (linoleic acid). ALA makes up 53% of the 18:3 omega-3 fatty acids in flax seed oil, which also contains 13% of 18:2 omega-6 fatty acids.

Health research

A meta-analysis revealed that eating more than 30 g of flaxseed per day for more than 12 weeks decreased waist circumference, body weight, and body mass index (BMI) for people with a BMI higher than 27. Another meta-analysis revealed that eating flax seeds for longer than 12 weeks caused modest drops in both systolic and diastolic blood pressure. A third found that consuming flax seed or its derivatives may lower blood levels of both total and LDL cholesterol, with higher advantages for women and those who already have high cholesterol. A fourth study only found a little drop in c-reactive protein, a sign of inflammation, in people with body mass indexes higher than 30.

Linseed oil is a colourless to yellowish oil made from the dried, ripened seeds of the flax plant. It is sometimes referred to as flaxseed oil or flax oil (in its edible form) (Linum usitatissimum). The flaxseed oil is extracted by cold pressing or in mills.

Because of its ability to make polymers, linseed oil is frequently combined with other oils, resins, or solvents to create impregnators, drying oil finishes, varnishes, pigment binders for oil paints, plasticizers and hardeners for putty, and linoleum. Over the past few decades, linseed oil use has decreased due to the greater accessibility of synthetic alkyd resins, which perform similarly to linseed oil but don't yellow.

Linseed oil is a well-known edible oil used as a dietary supplement because it is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids. In several regions of Europe, it is traditional to eat it with potatoes and quark.

Medicinal Properties of Flaxseed

Because of its high concentrations of lignans, fibre, and -linolenic acid (ALA, an omega-3 fatty acid), flaxseed is becoming a crucial functional food element. A reduction in cardiovascular disease, atherosclerosis, diabetes, cancer, arthritis, osteoporosis, autoimmune and neurological disorders is one potential health effect of flaxseed oil, fibres, and lignans.

Flax protein boost immunity and helps in the treatment and prevention of heart disease. Flax or flaxseed oil has been utilised as a useful food ingredient in meat products, dry pasta, liquids, milk and dairy products, muffins, and baked goods. The current study focuses on the commercial use of flaxseed in a variety of food products as well as recent research on its potential health benefits for both humans and animals.

Ground flaxseed or Whole flaxseed?

Because ground flaxseed is easy to digest than whole flaxseed, most of nutrition experts advise using it in the ground form. Whole flaxseed may not provide all of its health benefits because it may pass through your colon undigested.

Due to its rich fibre content, omega-3 fatty acid, and lignan content, flaxseed has many health benefits. A tablespoon of ground flaxseed has 37 calories, 2 grammes of dietary fibre, and 2 grammes of polyunsaturated fatty acids including omega 3s.

Flaxseed is frequently used to treat constipation or enhance digestive health. Flaxseed may reduce total blood cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein (LDL, or "bad") cholesterol, which may lessen the risk of heart disease.

Many supermarkets and health food stores sell flaxseed in big quantities, either whole or ground. It can be grind whole seeds at home with a food processor or coffee grinder.

How to Consume Flaxseed

Following are some tips for consuming flaxseed:

  • Add to your hot or cold breakfast cereal, stir in a spoonful of ground flaxseed.
  • When making a sandwich, mix a teaspoon of ground flaxseed with the mayo or mustard.
  • One tablespoon of ground flaxseed should be added to an 8-ounce container of yoghurt.
  • Ground flaxseed can be used to produce breads, Indian Chalati, muffins, cookies, and other baked goods.

Like other forms of fibre, flaxseed should be ingested with lots of water or other liquids. Flaxseed shouldn't be consumed at the same time as oral medications. Always with your doctor before using a dietary supplement.

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