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What Is A Flaxseed – How Healthful Is It?

So what is flaxseed? Flaxseed was cultivated in Babylon as early as 3000 BC. Some people have suggested it’s the most powerful plant food on the planet. Flax is a blue flowering plant that grows best in cool climates like North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota or Montana. But Canada is the largest producer of flaxseed in the world producing about 40% of the world production. It is sometimes also referred to as Linseed.

Which is better Chia Seeds or Flaxseeds?

The flaxseed is different than Chia Seeds. Both seeds are basically used in the same manner but flaxseeds are better to use as a substitute for flour in baked goods. They also are an excellence source of magnesium and should be ground in the Vitamix before you use it. They are available for purchase ground or whole. You also can substitute flaxseeds for flour by following this: use 1/4 cup of ground flaxseed per 1/4 of flour and then add a 1/4 cup of water. You can also use ground flaxseed to substitute for one egg by adding one tablespoon of flaxseed and 3 tablespoons of water and allow it to rest until it forms a gel.

How do you eat Flaxseeds?

Ground flaxseeds are great added to yogurt, oatmeal or in a smoothie and they have a mild nutty flavor. Ground flaxseeds are easier to digest than whole which is why grinding the flaxseed in a Vitamix is usually recommended.  Or buy flaxseed meal all ready to go.

Health Benefits of Flaxseeds

  • High in fiber
  • Good for digestion
  • Helps to regulate blood glucose
  • High in healthy fat
  • Helps reduce cholesterol level

Flaxseeds are gluten free

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High in ALA:

Alpha-Linolenic Acid also known as ALA is a plant based Omega-3 fatty acid and is considered the good fats. ALA from flaxseed has shown in studies to prevent heart attack and lower risk of stroke. Lowering inflammation is also a benefit when consuming flaxseed which is gaining popularity as a healthy food.

Lignans and Fiber:

You don’t hear much about Lignans but they are beneficial antioxidants that support the immune system. Lignans have phytonutrients that have both insoluble and soluble fiber. Fiber in the body helps regulate bowel movements and improve digestive health. It also helps to balance hormones in the body. Lignans have proven in studies to lower the risk of breast cancer in women and prostate cancer in men. Proper high fiber intake can also contribute to lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol and lower blood sugar.

Simple flaxseed recipe:

These are my 2 favorite fruits mixed into a healthy smoothie. Mix 2 tablespoons ground flaxseed, 1 ripe banana (I keep frozen bananas on hand for smoothies), 1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries, 3/4 cup almond milk, 2 teaspoons honey and add a glass of water or ice as needed and blend in a Vitamix until all ingredients are mixed together.

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Nutritional Facts for Flaxseeds *Percent Daily Values

  • Amount Per 1 tbsp, ground 7g
  • Calories 37
  • Total Fat 3 g 4% Saturated fat 0.3g 1%Polyunsaturated fat 2gMonounsaturated fat 0.5g
  • Sodium 2mg 0%
  • Potassium 57mg 1%
  • Total Carbohydrate 2g 1%
  • Dietary fiber 1.9g 7%
  • Sugar 0.1g
  • Protein 1.3g 2%
  • Calcium 1%
  • Iron 2%
  • Magnesium 6%*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Flaxseeds are beneficial for anybody that is on the Keto Diet.  Learn more here in my article, How Healthy is the Keto Diet.

The health benefits of flaxseeds are great and I hope this has clarified what is a flaxseed. Be sure to keep ground flaxseed refrigerated or if you have whole flaxseed then keep in a cool dry place for up to one year. It’s recommended to include 1-2 tablespoons of ground flaxseed in your daily nutritional intake per day and drink plenty of water. A glass of water is important to drink while consuming flaxseeds so your body can digest the excess fiber properly. Flaxseed can be purchased from your local grocery store or bought online here at Thrive Market. It is available in the form of seeds, oils, powder, tablets or flour. Remember to grind it before you eat it.

WHAT IS A FLAXSEED-how healthful is it? - sunbasket meals

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23 thoughts on “What Is A Flaxseed – How Healthful Is It?”

  1. Thanks for great article and help!  Though tiny, flaxseed is rich in the omega-3 fatty acid ALA, lignans, and fiber, all of which have been shown to have many potential health benefits. They can be used to improve digestive health, lower blood pressure, and bad cholesterol, reduce the risk of cancer and may benefit people with diabetes. I am a diabetic and have been eating flaxseed for about two years. Really improve my health.

  2. Years ago I went to an alternative doctor who recommended flaxseed. So i tried it. Because like you said, it is very healthy. Thank you for your explanation!!

  3. This a great article! Flaxseed has many health benefits. I love that flaxseed smoothie, it looks delicious and it is a great way to get healthy nutritional benefits. Thanks for this info!

  4. Thanks for breaking down the nutrition facts of flax seed. Now I know how to incorporate flax seed in my drinks, thanks again for sharing the smoothie recipes. It looks very tasty.

  5. What is flaxseed has provided many health benefits of adding flaxseed to our diets, and I loved the recipe and video yous shared.

    Only one question, I am concerned is flaxseed a food-allergy friendly food for people with food allergies and food intolerances?


  6. I am a big fan a flaxseeds. I have been having them on and off for the past few years. I tend to buy whole seeds and then grind them in my coffee grinder at home, store it in a glass jar in cupboard. I did not know about storing it in the fridge!

    I knew some of the benefits e.g. omega 3 and its hormone balancing properties that’s the reason I have it.

    Thank you for this knowledge.

    Best wishes

    • @Habib thank you for visiting my website. Yes it is recommended to store ground flaxseed in the fridge so it doesn’t lose its nutritional benefits and maintains the potency.

  7. Hey,

    This is a really important and informative article that will help ALL of us. My diet since the pandemic lockdown happened in March did go a bit off in the beginning, as it did with a lot of people. But, I think I got it back on track with the odd day here or there going back off track.

    Is what you are advertising good for the gut? I was getting some pains in my gut in July/August, and I believe that was due to what I was eating at that time. I seem to have gotten rid of the pains but I need to keep that going so I will try your recommendations if they are good.

    I will let you know how I go with that and if I have any further questions or issues then I will get in touch, if that is OK?

    Thank you for sharing and keep up the great work.

    All the best,


    • @Tom yes this product could help with the gut. Be sure to follow a doctors guidelines for getting to the route of gut problems. I go to a naturopath and she has helped me so much. You can read more about that by clicking here. Best wishes for good health.

  8. Thanks for this great article on flaxseed. I especially like the smoothie recipe and that you included nutritional info!
    I use flaxseed often and always add to smoothies so it’s great to learn more about it. Thanks!

  9. Alyse,

    Flaxseeds are great in so many recipes, I have to admit! I didn’t start really eating them until about a decade ago when I learned of their overall health benefits.

    I didn’t know that there was a ground version already that you can buy, since I only ever see the flaxseeds at the stores up here, but Alaska can be tricky to shop for good ingredients in. Stores will often not bring something in if they don’t think the sales will be good. So, they stick to what they know.

    I’ll be on the lookout for the ground flax though, or order online of course! 🙂

    Thanks for this great information!

  10. Great article about the health benefits of flaxseeds!

    I’ve been eating flaxseeds ever since I was diagnosed with a spinal cord tumour and was recommended flaxseeds after the surgery!

    I can’t remember the scientific reasons behind it but I’m still going strong 4 years later so I’m a massive fan.

  11. Flaxseeds are great and indeed very nutritious. I also like the way they taste. I usually have flaxseeds in my kitchen, but I recently ran out of them. I also grew some flaxseed on my land, the plants actually produce beautiful, small flowers 🙂
    Do I always have to grind flaxseeds before I eat them? I used to take them whole. Does the body absorb them more easily if the seeds are ground?


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