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Flaxseed, Fiber-rich seeds with a range of benefits

Now awareness of healthy life is increasing. Healthy food consumption is the main focus. One of them is flaxseed, which has many benefits.

Flaxseed is rich in fiber, good fats such as omega-3 fatty acids, carbohydrates, proteins, and vitamins and minerals including Vitamin B, folate, calcium, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, copper, iron, and zinc. These seeds also have antioxidant benefits and estrogen-like effects, thanks to the content of lignans in them. Flaxseed has high calories, which is about 530 calories in 100 grams.

What about the nutritional content of flaxseed?

One tablespoon of flaxseed contains 37 calories, 1.3 grams of protein, 3 grams of fat, and 1.9 grams of fiber. In addition, flaxseed contains essential fatty acids that the body needs, one of which is linolenic acid (ALA). Flaxseed contains 7 grams of linolenic acid which is important for brain development, especially if consumed by children.

Flaxseed is very rich in fiber. One tablespoon of flaxseed contains 1.9 grams of fiber. Fiber keeps the digestive system smooth and reduces blood cholesterol. Fiber can also help stabilize blood sugar levels, because fiber can slow down the absorption of sugar in the digestive tract and prevent the increase in blood sugar.

Benefits of Flaxseed

The following are some of the benefits of flaxseed for health:

Lower cholesterol levels

Flaxseed is thought to reduce levels of bad cholesterol or LDL (low-density lipoprotein), as well as overall cholesterol levels. However, flaxseed does not appear to affect HDL (high-density lipoprotein) or good cholesterol.




Prevent heart disease

The nutrient content in flaxseed, including fiber and omega-3, can be seen to help normalize the heart rhythm and reduce the risk of atherosclerosis. Recent studies also mention that omega-3 in flaxseed can help lower blood pressure.

Reduce inflammation

Inflammation that usually accompanies asthma and Parkinson's disease, is thought to be reduced by alpha linoleic acid (ALA) and lignans contained in flaxseed. Flaxseed content is also said to prevent the formation of plaque in the arteries, which can also prevent heart attacks and strokes.

Slows the development of cancer cells

Based on research in the laboratory, substances in flaxseed are seen to inhibit the growth of cancer cells, such as colon, breast, skin, and prostate cancers. Lignans in flaxseed are thought to provide protection from breast cancer. Researchers believe that consuming lignans since adolescence can help reduce the risk of breast cancer and increase life expectancy in breast cancer patients.

Stabilize blood sugar levels

In one study, intake of flaxseed three times a day for 3 months was seen to help stabilize blood sugar levels in type 2 diabetics. Other studies have shown that regular intake of flaxseed powder for one month can reduce fasting blood sugar levels.

Tips for consuming Flaxseed

Be sure to consume the crushed flaxseed, because in its whole form it can come out of the digestive tract without being digested properly. Unprocessed raw flaxseed may contain toxins. Therefore, cook flaxseed along with other foods to destroy toxins that may be contained in it. You can add flaxseed to biscuits, cakes, or bread before baking.

However, make sure not to consume it excessively. Consuming about 50 grams of flaxseed or 5 tablespoons per day, is considered sufficient. Add one tablespoon of flaxseed to breakfast cereal, or to mayonnaise in sandwiches. Flaxseed will also add fiber and taste to yogurt as a snack or dessert.

To get the benefits of flaxseed for health, eat these seeds regularly. But if you have certain health conditions, consult a nutrition doctor before taking flaxseed.





References

References

Calado, et al. NCBI. The Effect of Flaxseed in Breast Cancer: A Literature Review. Frontiers in Nutrition. 2018. 5, pp. 4. Kristensen, et al. NCBI. Flaxseed dietary fibers lower cholesterol and increase fecal fat excretion, but magnitude of effect depend on food type. Nutrition & Metabolism. 2012. 9, pp. 8. United States Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Service USDA (2018). Basic Report: 12220, Seeds, flaxseed.


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