Flaxseeds are superfoods packed with heart-healthy benefits and protective properties. They may look like tiny seeds, but they are loaded with notable nutrients and vitamins such as plant-based fibre, fatty acid, and protein. In flaxseeds, the percentage of the essential omega-3 fatty acid alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) is the highest of any plant source.
According to Meghan Sedivy, RD, LN Fresh Thyme Market’s health and lifestyle expert, “Flaxseeds are high in fibre, which helps to fill you up, keep you full longer, and aids in digestion and heart health. They also contain omega-3 fatty acid, which has been linked to several health benefits that include brain health and heart health; that may help reduce blood pressure levels and inflammation, and that help increases good cholesterol levels.”
Flaxseeds have recently gained official superfood status, but research has shown since the beginning of civilization they are cultivated crops. They are derived from the flax plant, Linumusitatissimum and were mainly focused on producing fibre for clothing and linens since 3000 B.C.
Flaxseeds help in relieving constipation. “Flaxseeds contain high amounts of fibre which may help improve digestive health,” Sedivy further explains. They are a good source of both soluble and insoluble fibre. The insoluble fibre in the digestive system helps in the movement of material and increases stool bulk.
Protein is important for muscles, skin, bones, cartilage. They are a good source of plant-based protein. Nearly 2 grams of protein are there in one teaspoon of flaxseeds contains. They contain heart-healthy, polyunsaturated fats. Flaxseeds have several heart health benefits: inflammation in the body, bad cholesterol levels, triglyceride levels, potentially reducing blood pressure levels, and increase good cholesterol levels, Sedivy says.
Flaxseeds have been shown to prevent the development of cancerous tumours, and this is because it contains lignans that protect the body from cancer by slowing the growth of the existing tumour. They can help reduce skin inflammation because they are high in anti-inflammatory omega-3s. Flax fibre helps in a healing effect on the skin.