If you’ve heard of superfoods you’ve likely heard of flax seeds, but do you know why they’re at the top of the superfood list? If you haven’t heard of superfoods then let me fill you in. I like to think of superfoods as foods that offer you next level nutritional value. If you think of food as medicine, I’d call superfoods the highest dose of vitamin and mineral goodness.
What are flax seeds
Flax seeds come from the flax plant (riveting, I know) and are tiny brown seeds that are about the size of a sunflower kernel. Originally harvested in areas around the Mediterranean they are now cultivated around the world. We call these seeds superfoods because a small amount offers so many different omega, fiber, vitamin and mineral benefits.
What are the benefits of flax seeds
Flax seeds seem to benefit multiple areas and functions of the body. The omega-3’s found in flax seeds are good for brain health and combating inflammation. Additionally, they pack a punch of fiber which is great for digestion. Not only do they have fiber but they also provide protein! Just one tablespoon of flax seed contains the following (source).
- Calories: 37
- Carbs: 2 grams
- Fat: 3 grams
- Fiber: 2 grams
- Protein: 1.3 grams
- Thiamine: 10% of the Daily Value (DV)
- Copper: 9% of the DV
- Manganese: 8% of the DV
- Magnesium: 7% of the DV
- Phosphorus: 4% of the DV
- Selenium: 3% of the DV
- Zinc: 3% of the DV
- Vitamin B6: 2% of the DV
- Iron: 2% of the DV
- Folate: 2% of the DV
The two types of fiber in flax seeds can help detox the body as they improve elimination by way of improving and supporting digestion. Additionally, studies show that flax seeds may protect against cancer, lower cholesterol, stabilize blood sugar levels and balance hormones. I love flax seeds for hormone health because they are beneficial in all stages of life whether trying to conceive or postmenopausal.
Ways to take Them
Not to complicate things because flax seeds are simply put…a seed. You will find they come either pre-ground, as a whole seed as well as in liquid form and you can buy them at most grocery stores. I typically get mine at Trader Joes, Whole Foods or even TJMaxx (you can order these). It is my preference to grind the seed myself at home because they ground version at the store is more likely to go rancid over time. However, I do keep ground flax on hand to make my favorite energy balls because it’s just easier that way. No matter what type you buy it’s best to keep them in the freezer to ensure freshness. Additionally, make sure you’re buying organic non-gmo. It makes no sense to use flax seeds for their health benefits if they’re injected with pesticides.
ENERGY BALL RECIPE
My favorite way to take flax seeds is in a smoothie, but you can also bake with them, sprinkle them on to salads and make them into energy balls. Click the button below for a variation of my favorite energy ball recipe, just leave out the brewers yeast if you’re not a nursing mother!
Either way, this is just another very simple way to kick your health goals into high gear by adding one small thing into your daily routine.
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Be Your Best,