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Get the Facts on Flax

The Little Seed With a Big Nutrition

68 Comments



  • It makes a lovely pancake mix. A little grainier than the original, but otherwise delicious. :) - 4/10/2012 2:05:00 PM
  • Nice comprehensive article.
    Just like to add that flaxseed really needs to be bought whole and ground to release its magic, unground it passes intact thru the intestinal track.

    Once ground... it becomes rancid./oxidizes quickly... pre-ground flax is no doubt rancid by the time its bought from doing time on the store's shelves...unless its been vacuum packed with nitrogen. This is why they tell you to store in the freezer once you open it. IMO its best just to leave it packaged in its shell and invest in a grinder and grind it at home.

    If you're not into grinding it, and still want flaxseed's beneficial ALA and fiber, a better choice may be Chia Seed. It doesn't need to be ground, doesn't go rancid and doesn't contain the minute amount of cyanide the way flax seed does.

    : )
    Mzzchief - 2/29/2012 10:18:00 AM
  • KRISAMZ
    Another way to eat flaxseed and get all the nutritional benefits - toast it. This is done in a skillet like old fashioned popcorn. Use over vegetables for a nut-like taste. Also is a good snack. Store like ground flax.

    I disagree with some of the terminology in the article. Ground flax and flax meal are not the same thing. Flax meal is what is left after the oil is removed. Most of the nutritional benefits are gone from this version. Ground flax has all the nutrients and oil.
    I would like to see some recipes and meal plans on SparkPeople which include flax. - 2/29/2012 12:38:42 AM
  • Thank you so much for the details, I heard about the flax seed but I thought its only for heart patients. Thanks again, i'll add it in my food from now on. - 2/15/2012 1:31:36 PM
  • JEAN_W_1960
    Thank you for the informative article. I have allergies and tend to react to various medicines and supplements, so especially appreciate the warnings. I'll try a little ground flax seed, but very cautiously! - 11/17/2011 11:51:13 AM
  • I'm sorry, but this article is confusing.
    "Fifty grams of flaxseed has about the same amount of omega-3's as three pounds of salmon!" but quantities of just a 1/4 cup & over can have drug interactions & harmful effects. HOW, pray, does that mean it's healthier than fish??? - 3/9/2011 3:59:27 PM
  • I also put flaxseed in my oatmeal and other dishes sometimes I eat it just like that. This is great stuff. - 2/9/2011 5:43:56 AM
  • 8ARROWHEADS
    I see a nutritionist and an acupuncturist and I am a DVM...all of my sources state that the type of omega 3's in flax seed are poorly converted to a usuable form by the adult mammal. Although now also found in a lot of pet foods, flax seed is of unknowable and questional benefit due to this poor conversion for our dogs as well - 1/5/2011 9:04:32 PM
  • Unfortunately, the article doesn't really do justice in comparing flax and fish oil. There are 3 main types of omega-3: ALA, DHA and EPA. Flax has ALA, which can be converted to DHA and EPA, but some people may not convert it as easily, especially people with diabetes. The bulk of research on the healthy heart benefits and lipid lowering are with DHA and EPA which is found in fish oil. You may not get enough EPA and DHA in flax if you are needing to reduce lipids or if you have heart disease. - 12/7/2010 4:27:22 PM
  • ACERENO
    I like to add flax seeds to my oatmeal with a little brown sugar. it is also nice in muffins. - 11/8/2010 12:06:44 PM
  • I am also a 2 year BC survivor and take Arimidex. Would love to take flaxseed for the benefits, but is it safe. Who can answer this question? - 10/17/2010 3:09:25 PM
  • Curious... article states (and I have heard before) that flaxseed oil and ground flaxseeds go bad very fast, and cannot be exposed to heat/light or they lose their benefits... but while it specifically says not to cook or heat the oil, it suggests adding the ground flaxseeds to cooked foods such as meatloaf or hamburgers. Wouldn't this have the same problem?

    I use ground flaxseed in cereals, smoothies, salads, and on yogurt w/nuts, fruit, and honey. I keep it in a cool, dark space but do not refrigerate or freeze. After reading this article, I will probably throw out what I have, buy whole seeds and start to follow these instructions -- I hope that what I have been using was not rancid! It didn't taste bad, but I know that rancid oils can cause a lot of systemic problems. - 7/21/2010 11:19:38 AM
  • I wonder about GETFITALREADY's comment. I am a breast cancer survivor who must take a prescription that blocks my hormone receptors. I wonder about the phyto estrogens in flaxseeds, if that is unhealthy for me. - 3/22/2010 9:13:33 PM
  • I use flaxseed quite often, most of the time as egg-substitue when baking and no eggs are around.
    It does help amazingly with digestion, even when you are not mobile, sitting in a wheelchair or or have quatropledgy. Try it, has really improved life quality for some people I know. - 3/11/2010 2:34:46 PM
  • I also read that flaxseed can mimic estrogen in certain people. I wonder if that would make it contraindicated for some and how would they even know? - 1/21/2010 7:03:05 PM

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