Flax Seeds and Their Benefits - Country Road Chronicles
Contributed by Grandfather Chief Grey Eagle
I have read somewhere that including flax in daily diet is as important as brushing your teeth, or taking your daily vitamins. Flax is made is made up of so many important health benefits in a single seed, that I consider it to be one of nature's most perfect health foods. The list of health benefits that can be contributed to flax seed is quite impressive. I don't know if you can find any food that even comes close to it at all. It gives you all around immune support, promotes healthy cholesterol levels, aids healthy digestion, and promotes healthy glowing skin. Your daily dose of flax seeds gives you everything that's good for you, including essential fatty acids, protein, vitamins, precious phytonutrients, and health promoting lignans, as well as soluble and insoluble fiber.
Flax is one of the oldest cultivated crops in history. Our ancestors revered its health benefits and curative powers. Somewhere along the way its healing powers were forgotten or overlooked in favor of "modern" therapies. Today these healing powers are being rediscovered in Canada, Europe, and the Far East. It's interesting how easily we forget the things we've known for hundreds of generations.
Flaxseeds are a wonderful source of so many of the nutrients our bodies need. Flax seeds are 35% oil and 55% of that oil includes the crucial omega-3 fatty acids. Don't forget that both omega-3 and omega-6 are essential oils that should be included in your diet to promote good heart health. Now if you are eating lots of fresh fruits and vegetables you are probably getting an adequate amount of omega-6, but if you are not eating lots of fruit and vegetables then you need to consider eating more for the sake of your good health. I am living proof that what I am saying, is true. I eat four tablespoons of flax ground into powder every day, two tablespoonfuls in the A.M. and 2 spoonfuls in the evening after dinner. I sprinkle the ground flax seed on yogurt, fresh fruit, cereal, but my favorite is on vanilla pudding and ice cream.
Omega-3s are harder to find; they are found mainly in cold-water fish like salmon. So unless you are eating salmon every night for dinner, you’re probably not getting enough omega-3s in your diet, and you are missing out on its important health benefits.
This makes flax even more powerful, because it contains approximately twice the amount of omega-3s found in fish oils. Just a quarter of a cup of flax contains 9,000 mg of omega-3s. So flax seed is an ideal way to get your essential fatty acids.
Flax is an excellent way to get the fiber you need for good health. Flax seed also contains soluble and insoluble fiber, both of which are important in promoting normal cholesterol levels. Just one quarter of a cup of flaxseed is packed with 10 grams of fiber. Fiber acts as a broom, cleaning out your intestines; it can help to promote regularity, plus the fiber will help you feel full longer so you might eat less, and could even lose weight. To get more fiber in their diets, many people take one of the powdered formulas you can find in the drug store. Unfortunately, most of these powders simply do not have the same high concentration of high quality fiber that is found in flax, or the heart healthy essential fatty acids or lignans.
- Country Road Chronicles