Flaxseed Health Benefits And Nutritional Values

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Flaxseed health benefits and nutritional values include supporting cardiovascular health, boosting energy level, reducing cancer risk, supporting arterial health, powerful in promoting blood health, natural benefits for menopausal/post-menopausal women, keeps the fight against inflammation on.

Other flaxseed health benefits and nutritional values expands to controlling diabetic issues, supports bone density, promotes good dental health, supports thyroid health and more.

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Flaxseed belongs to the family of Linaceae, of the genus of Linum, and botanically named as Linum usitatissimum. Flax seed, also known as linseed, is one of the ancient cultivated crops since Mesopotamian times, grown for its oilseeds and fiber.

Its crunchy seeds packed with nutrients, omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, minerals, and essential vitamins. Of late, health benefits of flax have widely drawn the attention of nutrition researchers as well as health enthusiasts alike across the world.

Tiny but mighty, flaxseed is one of the most nutrient-dense foods. The seeds come from flax, one of the oldest crops in the world. Flaxseed was first cultivated in Babylon in 3000 BC, followed by Egypt and China. King Charlemagne believed so strongly in the health benefits of flax seeds that he passed a law to make sure his subjects ate flaxseeds.

Flaxseed Health Benefits.

Given the strong track record of flaxseeds as foods providing cardiovascular support, it’s not surprising to see recent research studies showing potential benefits of flaxseeds for intervention in metabolic syndrome (MetS) and other health issues, read more as we give you the break down of flaxseed health benefits in a comprehensive lists.

Antioxidants:

Flaxseeds are one of the best sources of lignan, an estrogen-like chemical compound that scavenges the free radicals in the body. It contains 75-800 times more lignans than other plant-based foods. A 100 grams serving provides 0.3 grams of lignan. Lignans promote fertility and reduce the peri-menopausal syndrome. Flaxseeds have strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, which mitigate and protect against pneumonopathy.

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Controls Acne:

Flaxseeds control the production of sebum, an oily substance produced by the skin glands, preventing the onset of acne. Eat 1 to 2 tablespoons of milled flaxseed daily to achieve healthy and younger-looking skin.

Reduced Cancer Risks:

The Lignans found in Flaxseeds are incredibly helpful in the reduction of breast, uteral and prostate cancers. The reason for this is that Lignans are phytoestrogens: plant compounds that are effective at mimicking oestrogen in the body or having a role in its production/replacement.

The increased oestrogen associated with consuming these Lignans has positive effects on bone health, but its main use is the reduction of cancers associated with a reduced oestrogen count – meaning it has a protective effect on many cancers that affect females disproportionately such as breast cancer and cancer of the uterus.

Prevents Skin Cancer:

A diet rich in flaxseeds may protect the skin tissues from radiation. Researchers have found that flaxseeds significantly reduce skin damage after sun exposure. The antioxidants present in flaxseeds fight the free radicals, preventing skin cancer.

Digestive Health:

With so much fiber packed in each tiny seed, adding flaxseeds to your diet promotes regular bowel movements and can improve your digestive health.

Skin Healing:

The omega 3 fatty acids in flaxseeds increase the speed at which wounds heal. Flaxseed is best known for its high anti-inflammatory levels. You can successfully minimize skin irritation, rashes, inflammation and redness by regularly consuming flaxseeds. Thus, benefits of eating flax seeds are many for skin. It also shrinks the possibility of acne, dermatitis and psoriasis.

Prevents Cardiovascular Diseases:

The amino and omega 3 fatty acids in flaxseeds can significantly lower high blood pressure. A diet rich in flaxseeds can prevent hardening of the arteries. It also prevents the deposition of plaque in the arteries by keeping white blood cells from sticking to the blood vessels’ inner linings. Lignans in flaxseed reduce the atherosclerotic plaque buildup by 75%. It is also useful in treating irregular heartbeat. The alpha linolenic acid in flaxseeds protects the blood vessels from inflammatory damage.

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Reduces High Cholesterol:

Research has suggested that eating flaxseeds daily can reduce the cholesterol level significantly. It contains omega 3 fatty acids, fiber and lignan, which work together to reduce cholesterol. The low-density lipoprotein in the blood stream is often linked with heart diseases, obesity and metabolic syndrome.

Controls Diabetes:

Several researchers have concluded that daily intake of lignan-rich foods stabilizes blood sugar levels by improving insulin sensitivity. According to research, people who consumed flaxseeds for 12 weeks noticed a significant drop in their insulin resistance. This is due to the drop in oxidant stress caused by its high antioxidant levels.

Fights Inflammation:

Inflammation is mostly caused due to the deficiency in omega-3 fatty acids. Omega 3 fatty acid is a key nutrient for fighting inflammation in the body. ALA and lignans found in flaxseeds may reduce inflammation by blocking the release of certain pro-inflammatory agents. Consumption of flaxseeds increases the production of two other omega 3 fatty acids, namely eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosapentaenoic acid (DPA), which provide further inflammatory protection.

Flaxseed For Heart Health:

Flaxseeds are a rich source of the omega-3 fatty acid ALA. Plant-based ALA fatty acids are proven to have heart health benefits and are linked to a lower risk of stroke.

Blood Health:

Flaxseed is high in manganese – an essential mineral for bone and blood health. Flax contains over 100% of the daily recommended amount of manganese and can be used to drastically increase the quality of blood health and bone health, fighting problems such as anaemia and osteoporosis.

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Flaxseed Nutritional Values.

In a 100-gram serving, flaxseed contains high levels (> 19% of the Daily Nutritional Value, DNV) of protein, dietary fiber, several B vitamins, and dietary minerals. Ten grams of flaxseed contains one gram of water-soluble fiber (which lowers blood cholesterol) and three grams of insoluble fiber (which helps prevent constipation). Flax contains hundreds of times more lignans than other plant foods. Flaxseeds are especially rich in thiamine, magnesium, potassium, and phosphorus (DNVs above 90%).

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As a percentage of total fat, flaxseeds contain 54% omega-3 fatty acids (mostly ALA), 18% omega-9 fatty acids (oleic acid), and 6% omega-6 fatty acids (linoleic acid); the seeds contain 9% saturated fat, including 5% as palmitic acid. Flaxseed oil contains 53% 18:3 omega-3 fatty acids (mostly ALA) and 13% 18:2 omega-6 fatty acids.

See the table below for an in depth analysis of the nutritional values of Flaxseed (Linum usitatissimum). values per 100 g.

(Source: USDA National Nutrient database)

Principle Nutrient Value Percentage of RDA
Energy 534 Kcal 27%
Carbohydrates 28.8 g 22%
Protein 18.3 g 32.5%
Total Fat 42.16 g 170%
Cholesterol 0 mg 0%
Dietary Fiber 27.3 g 68%
Vitamins
Folates 87 µg 22%
Niacin 3.08 mg 19%
Pantothenic acid 0.985 mg 20%
Pyridoxine 0.473 mg 36%
Riboflavin 0.161 mg 12%
Thiamin 1.64 mg 137%
Vitamin A 0 IU 0%
Vitamin C 0.6 mg 1%
Vitamin E 19.95 mg 133%
Vitamin K 4.3 µg 3.5%
Electrolytes
Sodium 30 mg 2%
Potassium 813 mg 17%
Minerals
Calcium 255 mg 22.5%
Copper 1.12 mg 124%
Iron 5.73 mg 72%
Magnesium 392 mg 98%
Manganese 2.48 mg 108%
Zinc 4.34 mg 39%
Carotene-ß 0 µg
Lutein-zeaxanthin 651 µg

 

As you have seen in this article, when it comes to nutritional goodness, flaxseeds are full of it. Though tiny, they are rich in the omega-3 fatty acid ALA, lignans and fiber and many more, all of which have been shown to have many potential health benefits.

Add flaxseed to your daily diet to maintain top level health standard. However, Consult your health officer before you embark on any medical applications.

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