Why You Should Add Flaxseeds to Your Diet

Last week we shared halibut recipes. Fish oil is so good for you, that’s why we include it in Glucocil. The problem is, some people don’t like fish. While you can get the benefits from supplements, if you want to add more of the benefits of fish into your diet, you might feel like you’re out of luck. However, flaxseed is rich in omega-3 fatty acids — just like fish. And, flaxseed has so many other benefits!

Per ounce, the seed has 6,338 milligrams of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA)! That’s a plant-based omega-3. So, for everyone who has never been a fan, you can stop choking down fish and instead enjoy these seeds! And, flaxseed packs eight grams of fiber! In animal studies, ALA prevented cholesterol buildup, lowered inflammation and slowed tumor growth. It has also been linked to a lower risk of strokes and heart attacks.

Flaxseed can be enjoyed whole or ground into a meal for baking. If you want the benefits of flaxseed but aren’t really interested in adding more recipes to your repertoire at the moment, it can be stirred into yogurt, sauces or condiments you enjoy in the course of your day. You can also add the seeds sprinkled on a smoothie or into a salad, but many nutritionists think it’s better to have them ground because if you don’t chew them and swallow some whole, they can pass through your body undigested and you’ll miss out on the benefits. You can buy flaxseed and ground it yourself — it goes rancid quickly if left in ground form but can last a year in the refrigerator when whole.

Flaxseed is a good source of lignans, polyphenols found in plants. Some research has shown that lignans may lower the risk of certain cancers. A study, with 1,000 participants that lasted for 10 years, showed that women who ate a high amount of lignans weighed less and were less likely to gain weight over time. More studies are needed, and men should be included to be sure that the stable weight is seen in lignan-consumers of both sex. The women in the study with the highest levels of lignans in their urine had the lowest BMI scores.  

Several studies have shown that adding 10-20 grams of flaxseed power into your day can reduce blood sugar levels eight to 20 percent. A different study saw no reduction in blood sugar when flaxseed oil was used in place of powder, suggesting that the fiber in the seed may be what’s aiding blood sugar. The high level of fiber can cause bloating, abdominal pain and constipation.

As always, while we think flaxseed if a great addition to most people’s diets. We suggest you speak to your doctor before making any changes to your routine. There may be drug interactions with certain medications, or it might not be a good fit for you if you are already on a high fiber diet. Hopefully, you and your doctor can find a way to fit this great seed into your day!
October 21, 2019
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