Lets talk Flax! A fun word to say and a fun food to eat, Flax products provide many benefits to give your body a super boost!
Flax seed fast facts
- Flax seeds are an amazing source of omega 3 fatty acids. On the list of the worlds 127 healthiest foods, flax seed is number 1 in omega 3’s! The omega 3 that they are high in is called alpha linoleic acid or ALA which is excellent for the cardiovascular system. ALA can help blood vessels reduce excessive inflammation.
- Regular intake of flax has also shown to decrease cholesterol specifically the ratio of LDL to HDL.
- Flax seed oil has been linked to many studies in helping to regulate blood pressure and help to reduce blood pressure of those with hypertension
- Flax seeds are rich in fiber 2 TBSP provide about 4 grams of fiber which helps with normal digestion, how many people do you know with digestive issues? It boils down to the foods you eat 99% of the time. Its all about the things you are putting into your body and if you are not absorbing certain nutrients then it can be very problematic.
- Many studies have linked flax products to help in the prevention of certain cancers, specifically breast cancer, prostate cancer and colon cancer.
WHERE TO FIND FLAX SEEDS
First of all I recommend that you buy ground flax seed, commonly called flax seed meal. The flax seed itself is very difficult for our bodies to breakdown and therefore we don’t absorb it, and the flax seed meal is much easier to use for everyday purposes and in baking/cooking. You can find flax seed meal or oil in any health food store and most grocery chains are now carrying some version which makes shopping a lot easier. Since flax has become very popular it can be found in a lot of cereals, bars, crackers. This is excellent news however beware of other ingredients in those products and how much flax is really in the product being marketed. Is it even worth buying if it’s such a small amount/ probably not, you are most likely better off making your own version at home.
Here is the kind I always buy:
It can safely be stored in a cool dark place or in the refrigerator for a few months.
HOW DO I USE FLAX?
I will list a few of the most common and easiest ways to incorporate flax into your nutrition plan. Flax basically gives things a little bit of a nutty taste.
Mixed into your oatmeal
In your smoothies and shakes (can use the flax meal or oil for this)
Add some on top of roasted vegetables
Add it into your muffin and cookie recipes
Add it into homemade protein bars
In your pancakes
Check out this pumpkin muffin recipe that could be a tasty high fiber snack!
- 15 oz canned Pumpkin Puree
- 1 cup Oat Bran Cereal
- 1 cup Organic High Fiber Cereal
- 1 cup Whole Wheat Pastry Flour
- 1 cup Brown Sugar
- 2 tsp Baking Soda
- 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
- 2 tsp all spice
- 2 tsp ground Cinnamon
- 2 tsp ground Nutmeg
- 2 Tbsp Flaxseed Meal
- 1 cup Cranberries
- 1 tsp Salt
- 2/3 cup Vegetable Oil
- 3 Eggs
Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease 12 muffin tins or line with paper muffin liners; set aside.
In a large bowl, stir together the flour, bran, high fiber cereal, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, flaxseed meal, spices.
In a separate bowl, beat pumpkin puree, vegetable oil and eggs. Mix until smooth. Stir in cranberries. Scoop batter into prepared muffin tins.
Bake in preheated oven for 20 – 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of the muffin comes out clean.
Makes 12 muffins
Check out more great flax recipes here http://www.bobsredmill.com/recipes.php?cmd=search&ingredients=676&sort=name