The seeds of the flax plant are in the research spotlight. Because of their fiber, ground flaxseeds have shown promise as a treatment for constipation and irritable bowel syndrome, lessening symptoms significantly more than psyllium fiber. Fiber is also thought to be behind flaxseeds’ success in reducing cholesterol levels, and further evidence indicates that flaxseeds might help combat certain cancers, including breast and prostate cancers. Both the seeds and oil contain alpha-linolenic acid, an omega-3 fatty acid similar to those in fish oil that may offer some of the same benefits, such as reduced risk of heart disease and stroke.
Choose It & Use It
Buy ground flaxseeds (flax meal), or grind seeds in a coffee grinder. Add ground seeds to smoothies, hot cereal, yogurt, or baked items such as veggie meatloaf, bread, and muffins. Mix flaxseed oil into salad dressings, steamed veggies, or cooked rice (avoid cooking with ithigh heat destroys its beneficial compounds). Replace each egg in recipes with 1 tablespoon of ground flaxseeds dissolved in 3 tablespoons of water.
get the recipes
Start the day with a healthy breakfast bar. These are full of fiber, vitamins and minerals plus omega-3 essential fatty acids from the walnuts and flaxseeds. If you can’t find ground flaxseeds, grind your own in a food processor, blender or spice grinder so their nutrients are moremore
Deep-Dish Skillet Pizza
Try this homemade pizza technique with your favorite toppings as well.more
Banana-Flax Breakfast Muffins
These morning treats are a lot more healthful than they taste. Ground flaxseed gives them a slightly nutty flavor while providing a dose of omega-3s. If you can’t find flaxseed meal, grind whole flaxseeds in a coffee grinder until powdered.more
Gluten-Free Veggie Burger
Simple, speedy, and satisfying, this patty recipe is made with TVP (textured vegetable protein), which can be found in the bulk section of natural food stores. These burgers get their meaty flavor from dulse, dried seaweed flakes that are a good source of B vitamins and iron.more