Got Flax? 5 Reasons You Should!


I love it when my foods are my supplements – because I always remember to eat!

More importantly, I believe that foods are our best medicines. When our nutritional intake is “tip top” we really only need a few supplements to make up for what’s not in our modern, eating-on-the-run diets.

Flax Seeds: Queen of the Food-Supplements

When it comes to a food that is an herb and a nutritional supplement all in one pretty little package, flax seeds are the queen! They are rich in fiber, which most of us are not getting enough of from our diets, low in calories, and high in good quality fats. According to the USDA, 2 Tbsp. of ground flax seed, which is the daily “dose,” weighs 14 grams, has 75 calories, 5.9 grams of total fat, and 3.8 grams of total dietary fiber.

Flax seeds have numerous health benefits, which is why I recommend that most women take 1-2 TBS fresh ground flax seeds as a regular part of their daily diet.

The Health Benefits of Flax Seeds

Here’s what flax seeds can do for you:

  1. Give you Smooth Moves: Here’s the thing, girls, when you “Take out your garbage” every day – that is, you have a good BM at least once daily (= easy to evacuate, fully formed, at least 6” long) you not only feel lighter, but you are clearing out a bunch of environmental toxic waste, as well as excess estrogen that might be hanging out in your system wreaking havoc here and there. Flax taken daily will help you to have smooth bowel movements. If you take them in capsules or some other way that’s not in a smoothie, make sure to drink at least 8 oz. of water per 2 TBS ground flax – otherwise they’ll add to the clog, not the cleaning out!
  1. Create Hormone Harmony: As mentioned in point #1 about #2’s, healthy daily elimination gets rid of excess estrogen – both from the environment, and also the toxic breakdown products we create getting rid of our own natural estrogens and those we get from birth control pills. When we effectively eliminate excess and toxic estrogens, we experience fewer women’s health problems including PMS, fibroids, problems with endometriosis, frequent and heavy periods, and cyclic breast pain and lumps.
  1. Satisfy Your Appetite (and help you lose weight): Flax seeds can help you to keep your appetite in check when you’re trying to stay slim or lose weight. Research suggests that taking flaxseed 2 hours before a meal increases your sense of fullness, making you less likely to overeat!
  1. Promote Heart Health: Flax seeds prevent both diabetes and high cholesterol! Scientific studies reliably show that flax seeds taken regularly can prevent and even reverse diabetes, and in women prior to menopause, can also lower unhealthy forms of cholesterol.
  1. Make Your Skin Glow: Our skin is our biggest detox organ. When we’re not eliminating well, especially those extra hormones, this manifests in our skin. Keeping our bowels moving daily takes the burden off the skin to do that extra detox, and also helps eliminate those excess hormones that contribute to acne. Also, keeping your appetite in check can help you to avoid sugar binging, and sugar also contributes to acne. So clear skin can be a collateral benefit of daily flax use.

How to Use Flax Seeds

Flax seeds are super easy to use. Simply add 1-2 Tbsp. to a daily smoothie, toss onto a green salad, or add into your favorite coconut (or other) yogurt.

Whole flax seeds contain both the healthy fiber and fats you need – but to be absorbed, they have to be ground into a meal or powder. I recommend buying 100% organic whole flax seeds and grinding them yourself. You can grind a week’s worth at a time and store them in the fridge. Put 1 cup of whole flax seeds into your blender, food processor, or Vitamixer, and pulse until fully ground. Store in a clean dry glass container with a tight fitting lid (a mason jar works well!) in the fridge because once ground, they quickly go rancid if not kept cool. The whole flaxseeds, prior to being ground, can be stored at room temperature (i.e. in your pantry or cabinets). If you buy already ground flax seeds, keep those refrigerated. But really, it is SOOOO easy to grind your own.

Flax Seeds Contain Phytoestrogens. Is That Dangerous?

A lot of women ask me whether flax seeds are safe because they are rich in what are called “phytoestrogens” – estrogen-like compounds produced by plants. Phytoestrogens are found in most plants and are especially abundant in green leafy vegetables (yes, that includes your kale!) and legumes and beans (that means in your hummus, too!). Because phytoestrogens competitively block more toxic forms of estrogens from binding to our cells, they are actually highly protective against cancer. There is evidence to show that most of us, even with a history of estrogen receptor positive cancers, actually benefit from getting these phytoestrogens from plants. However, if you have personally had an estrogen receptor positive cancer, please discuss using flax seeds with your doctor before making them part of your daily lifestyle.

Your First Flax Seed Recipe!!!

Ok, off you go…Here’s one of my favorite flax seed recipes to get you started!

Berry “Power Moves” Smoothie

  • 1 ripe fresh or frozen banana (frozen = yummy milkshake consistency for your smoothie)
  • ½ cup frozen organic strawberries
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk (homemade if you can!)
  • 2 tsp. coconut oil
  • 1 Tbsp. almond butter
  • 1-2 level Tbsp. freshly ground flax seeds
  • 1 tsp. hemp seeds

To prepare: Toss into the blender and whiz on high speed until smooth. Enjoy. Makes about 12 oz.

BONUS: To transform this into an afternoon “pick-me-up” shake that will curb your afternoon appetite, add 1 Tbsp. cacao powder. Mmmmmm…. a delicious coffee and sugar craving satisfier and quick treat at the same time!

 

If you liked this, don’t miss a thing! Please join my mailing list (it’s FREE) and you’ll receive a downloadable/printable handout on creating your own natural medicine cabinet, including doses, uses, and precautions.

 

Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Read or leave comments 23 Comment


Generic placeholder image
Miranda

What about flax oil? Does it have the same benefits as the ground seed?

Reply

    Generic placeholder image
    aviva

    See similar question :)

    Reply

Generic placeholder image
Dori

Hello, Aviva, Thanks os much for your owrk in the world and good for you to have found a social media queen! I am concerned about the instability of the oil in flax seeds. I have read that even if ground in a cool moist smoothie, then ingested soon after, the oil can begin to oxidize in my body. What do you know about this? And should I keep the whole seeds in the refrigerator? Thanks for you help on this one!

Reply

    Generic placeholder image
    aviva

    Hi Dori, I can't imagine that if ground and ingested immediately they would oxidize that fast -- and how would one know? I don't keep my unground seeds in the fridge -- but I do grind them fresh for each use. I just put them into the blender and whiz, then add in my smoothie ingredients. Best, ~Dr. A.

    Reply

Generic placeholder image
Mathew

What about flaxseed oil? I have been taking it semi-regularly (Barlean's is the brand). http://goo.gl/KHDXN1

Reply

    Generic placeholder image
    aviva

    Good stuff but doesn't have the same effects on gut health, constipation, and detox.

    Reply

Generic placeholder image
Can I contact you with a question??? Doris

I am turning 80 years old in August, I am in excellent health with the exception of still suffering with hot flushes, mostly through the nite.......Total hysterectomy was done in 1984....Is there any help available???....Thank you so much, I do enjoy your emails, hope they will continue.....Doris

Reply

Generic placeholder image
Amber Hamilton

Thanks for posting this! I love ALL of your blogs and share them with my mom and sisters all the time. I have always purchased my flax already ground at the store and keep mine in the fridge. Is this not as nutritional? How do you recommend grinding your own flax? Also, in your recipe you suggest making your own almond milk. I would love to make my own. How do I go about doing this? Is there a recipe you can post on here or add a link to? Thanks again!

Reply

    Generic placeholder image
    aviva

    Thank you! Almond milk recipe coming next week! YAY!!!! I grind my flax right in my blender...

    Reply

Generic placeholder image
Jennifer

Not only do I love flax, but I love chia seeds too. Every morning I mix 2 tbs od ground flax and 2 tbs of chia seed and soak it in almond or coconut milk for about 15 minutes until it swells up and then I add 1 tsp of raw honey, organic berries, raw walnuts snd a little more almond milk. You have the best breakfast ever!!!! I eat around 5:30 am to 6:00 am and I am not hungry until about 1 or 2 in the afternoon. Chia has more omega 3's than flax and not the bad omega 6 that flax haa.

Reply

    Generic placeholder image
    Missy Cohen

    Jennifer, Thanks for posting that. It sounds amazing! I'm going to make it for my own breakfast tomorrow. I can't wait.

    Reply

Generic placeholder image
Rosemary

I am so glad you posted this article. I have been very confused by the flax issue. I used to cook with it in bars and smoothies all the time. Then, I heard some very conflicting news. ... I was told that I shouldn't use it for my husband b/c it could cause prostate cancer. I researched it until I was blue in the face and couldn't find any incriminating evidence against it (with the exception of flaxseed oil). So, even with my research, I was scared to use it in recipes for my husband and two sons. Can you please shed the right light on this for my sake and my family! I would love to start using it again with zero worries! Thanks so much. God bless.

Reply

Generic placeholder image
Eve

This is a great article, thank you! I feel like it resonates for me and will have to try flax. I am breastfeeding - but that makes me think I wouldn't have excess estrogen. I always thought that estrogen dominance issues happened closer to menopause. Is this not the case?

Reply

Generic placeholder image
Kathy

Is there a difference in golden vs. brown flax? I have heard that the golden is better.

Reply

Generic placeholder image
Jeanne

Thanks for the post. I've noticed major benefits to my digestion with flax seeds the past several months. I am now five weeks pregnant. Are flax seeds safe during pregnancy? There is some mixed information out there on the web. Thanks!

Reply

    Generic placeholder image
    aviva

    Yes -- they sure are! :) And congrats!!!

    Reply

Generic placeholder image
Glenda Myers

Are there any interactions using ground flax seeds while on low dose birth control pills?

Reply

    Generic placeholder image
    aviva

    They are considered safe together; flax seeds, when properly transformed in the gut but good gut flora, clears excess estrogen from the gut, but no from your circulation - so doesn't reduce OCP effectiveness.

    Reply

Generic placeholder image
Brooke

I thought that phytoestrogens were not good for you because they are estrogenic in your system. For instance, soy is has phytoestrogens and is highly estrogenic. Men who eat too much soy often have problems with breast development and misshapen bodies. Women often deal with estrogen dominance. Am I mistaken?

Reply

Generic placeholder image
Adriane

Does ground flaxseed reduce the effectiveness of birth control? (Sprintec for example)

Reply

    Generic placeholder image
    Aviva

    Not at all to my knowledge.

    Reply

Generic placeholder image
Vonnise

Love your article about flax seed I was using it ages ago for digestion but had got out of the habit. I shall be stocking up so I can restart very interesting about grinding them. Thank you

Reply
663 Shares
Share
Tweet
Pin
Share
Email