Flaxseeds have been around for centuries, but it’s only recently that they’ve become popular among health-conscious people. These tiny seeds are packed with fiber, healthy fats and nutrients — and they’re easy to add to just about anything.
The health benefits of flaxseeds are incredible. This tiny seed packs a powerful punch when it comes to your overall health. Flaxseed is one of the most nutrient-dense foods on the planet, providing an excellent source of fiber, omega-3 fatty acids, lignans, and more.
Here are some of the health benefits of flaxseed:
- They’re high in fiber. Flaxseeds contain plenty of dietary fiber, which helps reduce cholesterol levels, improves digestion and prevents constipation.
- Flaxseeds are high in lignans — phytonutrients that may protect against breast cancer by inhibiting the growth of estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer cells without affecting normal cells. They also have antioxidant properties that help fight heart disease and stroke by preventing LDL cholesterol from oxidizing and forming plaque in blood vessels
- They’re high in antioxidants. Flaxseed contains both soluble and insoluble fibers that act as antioxidants in the body by fighting free radicals that cause damage to cells. Antioxidants also lower blood pressure by relaxing blood vessels and preventing blood clotting.
- They promote heart health. Studies show that flaxseed has a positive effect on heart health by lowering bad LDL cholesterol levels while raising good HDL cholesterol levels. The omega-3 fatty acids found naturally in flaxseed may also help lower triglyceride levels, reduce inflammation and prevent blood clots.
- They contain alpha linolenic acid (ALA), which is an essential fatty acid that our bodies cannot produce on their own. This is why it must be obtained through our diet instead of being made inside our bodies. ALA is converted into eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), two long-chain omega-3s that help reduce inflammation and lower cholesterol levels in the body.