Flax seeds, also known as linseeds, are tiny, brown, or golden-colored seeds packed with nutrients and health benefits. They have been used in traditional medicine for a long time and have recently gained popularity as a superfood.
Add flax seeds to your diet suggests the best nutritionist in Bangalore.
Therefore let’s check out the health benefits, the nutritional value of flax seeds, and how they help promote weight loss in the following segment.
Nutritional Value of Flax Seeds:
Flax seeds are a great fiber, protein, and good fats source. They also include vitamins and minerals like magnesium, manganese, and thiamine. The following nutrients are found in one tablespoon of ground flax seeds (7 grams):
- Calories: 37
- Protein: 1.3 grams
- Carbohydrates: 2 grams
- Fiber: 1.9 grams
- Total fat: 3 grams
- Saturated fat: 0.3 grams
- Monounsaturated fat: 0.5 grams
- Polyunsaturated fat: 2.0 grams
- Omega-3 fatty acids: 1.6 grams
- Omega-6 fatty acids: 0.4 grams
- Vitamin B1 (Thiamine): 8% of the RDI
- Magnesium: 7% of the RDI
- Manganese: 7% of the RDI
Top 9 Health Benefits of Flax Seeds:
- High in Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Flax seeds are a significant source of omega-3 fatty acids, essential for decreasing inflammation, maintaining cognitive function, and maintaining a healthy heart. Alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), which the body transforms into the active forms of omega-3s, is present in them.
- Improve Heart Health: The LDL (bad) cholesterol levels, blood pressure, and risk of heart disease can all be decreased with the help of the omega-3 fatty acids found in flax seeds. Flax seed fiber can also help in lowering cholesterol levels.
- Reduce Inflammation: Flax seeds contain anti-inflammatory lignans that can help reduce inflammation. This can be especially beneficial for people with autoimmune diseases or chronic inflammation.
- Aid Digestion: Flax seed fiber can help promote regular bowel motions and regulate digestion. They can also help reduce the risk of constipation, diarrhea, and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
- Encourage Weight Loss: Flax seeds are high in fiber and low in calories, which may help curb appetite and increase feelings of fullness. They can also help reduce cravings and promote weight loss.
- Support Hormonal Balance: Lignans, found in flax seeds, can help balance hormones and lower the risk of diseases connected to hormones, including breast cancer.
- Improve Skin Health: The omega-3 fatty acids in flax seeds can help improve skin health by reducing inflammation and promoting hydration. They can also help reduce the risk of skin conditions such as acne and psoriasis.
- Boost Immunity: Flax seeds are high in antioxidants, which can help boost immunity and reduce the risk of infections and chronic diseases.
- Reduce the Risk of Cancer: The lignans in flax seeds can help lower the risk of hormone-related cancers, such as breast, prostate, and ovarian cancer. They can also help reduce the risk of colon cancer.
Different Ways to Consume Flax Seeds:
You can consume flax seeds in a variety of ways, including:
Ground Flax Seeds: Flax seeds can be ground to assist in releasing their nutrients and make them simpler to digest. You may combine or grind the seeds in a coffee grinder to make powder, which you can sprinkle on food or include in smoothies.
- Flaxseed Oil: Omega-3 fatty acids can be found in flaxseed oil, which can also be used as a salad dressing or in smoothies. However, it is essential to note that flaxseed is not a good cooking oil, as it has a low smoke point.
- Flaxseed Milk: Flaxseed milk is a dairy-free alternative to cow’s milk made by blending ground flax seeds with water. It can be used in smoothies, cereal, and baking recipes.
- Whole Flax Seeds: Whole flax seeds can be added to baked goods, such as bread and muffins, for a crunchy texture. However, they may be harder to digest than ground flax seeds.
- Flaxseed Supplements: Flaxseed supplements are available as capsules or tablets and can be taken as dietary supplements. However, it is essential to consult a healthcare professional before taking supplements.
Side Effects of Consuming Flax Seeds:
While flax seeds are generally considered safe, there are some potential side effects that you should be aware of:
- Digestive Issues: Bloating, gas, and diarrhea are just a few digestive problems resulting from eating too many flax seeds. Starting small and gradually increasing your intake is important.
- Allergic Reactions: Flax seeds can cause an allergic reaction in some people, causing rashes, itching, and breathing problems. If you experience these symptoms, stop consuming flax seeds directly and seek medical attention.
- Interference with Medications: Flax seeds may interfere with the effectiveness of some drugs, including blood thinners. If you take any medications, you must speak with a medical expert before taking flax seeds.
Flax seeds are a nutrient-dense food that can provide a range of health benefits, including improved heart health, digestion, and immunity, as well as reduced inflammation and the risk of cancer.
They can be consumed in different ways, including ground seeds, flaxseed oil, milk, and supplements. Yet, it is very important to understand the potential side effects of flax seeds, including digestive issues and allergic reactions.
Incorporate flax seeds into your diet in moderation and consult a healthcare professional before taking any supplements. Additionally, flax seeds can be a valuable tool for promoting weight loss as part of a balanced diet and active lifestyle.
And, if you need help with your diet, you can always consult Sreemathy Venkatraman, the best nutritionist in Bangalore.