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Health Benefits of Flaxseed

From Weight Loss to Digestion, All the Reasons You Should Be Eating Flaxseeds

Are you noticing flaxseeds added to just about everything these days? It's for good reason — they're insanely healthy — but do you know why? Check out the reasons you should be eating flaxseeds (if you're not already).

  1. Walnuts and fish are excellent sources of omega-3s, but so are flaxseeds. The recommended daily intake (RDI) of omega-3s is around one gram a day, and one tablespoon of flaxseed offers 2.3 grams (one tablespoon of flaxmeal offers 1.6 grams).
  2. The omega-3s in flaxseed can help reduce inflammation that leads to conditions such as asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, migraine headaches, and osteoporosis.
  3. Alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) is one kind of omega-3 fatty acid that is found in flaxseeds, and this fat helps promote bone health.
    • Flaxseed is known to lower total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol levels, and it may lower blood pressure — all essential elements to having a healthy heart.
    • Whole flaxseed is a great source of fiber. One tablespoon contains three grams of fiber, which can aid in digestion, help prevent constipation, and aid in weight loss.
    • Lignans, the fiber found in flaxseed, promotes regular digestion and are thought to have a role in breast cancer prevention.

Here are some creative tips on how you can get more flax into your diet.

  • Sprinkle seeds or ground flaxseed on your cereal, oatmeal, yogurt, salad, or sandwiches.
  • Add flaxseed to your recipes. They make the perfect high-fiber egg replacer — one tablespoon flaxmeal mixed with three tablespoons water equals one egg. Try it in these gingerbread "buttermilk" pancakes or this protein-packed banana bread.
  • Add flaxmeal or flaxseeds to your blender when making your breakfast smoothie — the healthy fats and fiber will keep you feeling full longer.
  • Look for products that have added flax such as cereal, bread, and crackers.
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