Flaxseed (Linum usitatissimum) is ranked among the so-called “superfoods” because of the many proven health benefits of consuming it. It also produces flaxseed oil, a widespread nutritional supplement. There are two main varieties of flaxseed – brown and yellow (golden), with similar nutritional composition. Seeds are one of the richest sources of plant-derived omega-3 fatty acids, contain many vitamins and minerals, plant proteins, and soluble fiber. Flaxseed is also rich in the so-called “lignans”. These are compounds called phytoestrogens that are involved in the production and regulation of the hormone estrogen in the human body and they can also reduce up to 70% the risk of uterine and breast cancer in women and improve prostate health in men. Lignans are also antioxidants and slow the growth of tumors, not allowing them forming a new blood vessels.

There are many benefits from consuming this “superfood”. The diverse nutritional profile of flax seeds also makes them a good  alternative to seafoods.

A recent study from the University of Saskatchewan (Canada) shows that taking lignan supplements, such as flaxseed oil, combined with light physical activity, can significantly affect high blood pressure in adult patients with stage I hypertension. For a few weeks, they experience a decrease in systolic blood pressure, a change in body weight and a decrease in bad blood cholesterol.

It appears that lignans and other phytoestrogens in flaxseed can also affect chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes. In participants in another study from 2013 who was given a daily dose of 13 g of flaxseed, an improvement in  insulin sensitivity was observed. Also the glucose and insulin in the blood have been decreased.

There are also many statements that linseed consumption can have anti-inflammatory properties and help with constipation, but unfortunately there is little scientific evidence to support it at this time.


How to consume it and what’s the recommended daily ration?

Linseeds have been found to digest more easily ground than eaten whole. We can add them to yoghurt, smoothie, to our salad or in different baked dishes.

One tablespoon daily is enough for us to get all the aforementioned health benefits.


Please note that this article is for informational purposes and in the presence of specific illnesses it is recommended to consult your doctor first.




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