Friday, December 28, 2012

Why do I use Flaxseed?


New Years is a few days away...this means I am thinking of GOALS. One goal I have already thought of is to research more on healthy foods or God Foods, as I like to say. One food I was wanting to look at more is flaxseed. I use it and have gone in spurts. I have been adding it to my Nutribullet smoothies so I want to see why other than knowing it's good for me.

I purchase milled, ground flaxseed, such as this...

According to WebMD, flaxseed reduces your risk of:

- Cancer
- Diabetes
- Heart Disease
- Lung Disease
- Stroke

Although flaxseed contains all sorts of healthy components, it owes its healthy reputation primarily to three ingredients:
  • Omega-3 essential fatty acids, "good" fats that have been shown to have heart-healthy effects. Each tablespoon of ground flaxseed contains about 1.8 grams of plant omega-3s.
  • Lignans, which have both plant estrogen and antioxidant qualities. Flaxseed contains 75-800 times more lignans than other plant foods.
  • Fiber. Flaxseed contains both the soluble and insoluble types.

Recent studies have suggested that flaxseed may have a protective effect against cancer, particularly breast cancer, prostate cancer, and colon cancer. At least two of the components in flaxseed seem to contribute, says Kelley C. Fitzpatrick, MSc, director of health and nutrition with the Flax Council of Canada.
In animal studies, the plant omega-3 fatty acid found in flaxseed, called ALA, inhibited tumor incidence and growth.
Further, the lignans in flaxseed may provide some protection against cancers that are sensitive to hormones without interfering with the breast cancer drug tamoxifen. Some studies have suggested that exposure to lignans during adolescence helps reduce the risk of breast cancer and may also increase the survival of breast cancer patients, Thompson says.
Lignans may help protect against cancer by:
  • Blocking enzymes that are involved in hormone metabolism.
  • Interfering with the growth and spread of tumor cells.

Flaxseed can also fight hot flashes and reduce menopausal symptoms. 

I don't know about you but I think I'm going to keep adding flaxseed to my bread, muffins, and smoothies. Hope you had a Merry Christmas and watch out for my next postpartum post :)

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