Flax: The Low-Carbohydrate Seed with a Powerful Nutrient Punch

Tasty and easy to incorporate into meals, three tablespoons of flax seed a day will help keep the doctor away

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Flax seed helps you maintain good digestive health and lowers your cholesterol

Flax seed offers several health benefits in tasty, manageable portions

Good things sometimes come in tiny packages, and one of the best examples is flax seed – the low-carbohydrate seed with the powerful nutrient punch.

Flax seeds are rich in most B vitamins, magnesium and manganese, and have an especially high content of three key disease-fighting nutrients – fibre, lignans and omega-3 essential fatty acids. 

Health Benefits of Flax

The fibre in flax helps maintain good digestive health and reduces cholesterol levels, while the antioxidant lignans play a role in helping to protect cells from damage and may also protect against some cancers.

The omega-3 fatty acids in flax play a key role in growth and development and are vital for memory and brain functioning. They can also reduce inflammation, and may help lower the risk of heart disease.

Add Flax to Your Meals

The great thing about flax is that it has a mild, nutty flavour and is easy to add to foods. 
To get the full health benefit from flax seeds, grind them in a blender or coffee grinder (store the leftover ground flax in the refrigerator to prevent the natural oils from going rancid). Note: Whole flax seeds add fibre but are less digestible.

Just 3 Tbsp. (45 mL) of ground flax seed a day is enough to enhance health. Add it to cereal or yogurt, or use in bread dough, muffins or pancake batter. Sprinkle flax on salads, or add it to smoothies.

Originally published in Wellness Matters, Canada Wide Media’s quarterly newsletter on health and wellness.