Flax seeds, also known as Alsi, have been in the health market for years because of their unique properties aiding in supporting good health. All Doctors and Nutritionists around the world are prescribing everybody for one problem or another. But everybody wonders what is in flaxseeds that makes it everybody’s favorite! Let’s know more about them.
The Magical powers of Flax seeds are because of its 3 magical ingredients:
Fiber- Flax Seeds are enriched with 2 types of fibers, a soluble fiber which ranges from 20-40% and insoluble fiber which is 60-80%. This combination of both gets fermented in the large bowel by the bacteria present there. This helps in regular bowel movement. The same proves to be beneficial in diabetes and dyslipidemia.
Omega -3 fatty acids- This magical property of flaxseeds is a boon for people who are vegetarians as the rich sources of it are maximum fish and animal products. Omega-3 fats are helpful in keeping the heart healthy, regulating blood pressure, reduces the chances of strokes and the development of plaque.
Lignans- They possess the quality of antioxidants and plant estrogen. Only flax seeds contain 75 to 800 times more lignans compared to any other plants. It’s because of lignans that flaxseeds work great for menopausal symptoms, osteoporosis, heart diseases, and cancer.
It is because of these 3 ingredients that flax seeds help people with the following health issues:-
Improves Blood Sugar: Daily intake of flax seeds results in the good management of blood sugar levels. All types of Diabetics can benefit from their consumption.
Helpful in Cardiovascular Health: As discussed above. The omega 3 fats present in flax seeds prevents the formation of plaque and hardening of arteries. This keeps the overall health of the cardiovascular system going.
Helps in Cancer prevention: The Lignans and Omega 3 fats in flax seeds provide protection against cancer and tumor growth. They interfere with the growth of cancer cells and prevents them from the cellular level.
Relieves Constipation: The natural fiber present in flax seeds gives bulk to stools and prevents constipation. They keep the digestive system good.
Prevents Inflammation: The Omega 3 fats in flax seeds block the release of pro-inflammatory agents which makes them helpful in preventing inflammation in any cells or tissue of the body.
Nutritive Value of 100 grams of flax seeds is given below-
Energy- 534 kcal
Carbs- 10.9 gm
Protein- 18.5 gm
Fibre- 26.1 gm
Vitamins and Minerals
Thiamine (B1)- 0.28
Riboflavin (B2)- 0.05
Pantothenic acid (B5)- 0.37
Biotin (B7)- 21.25
Folate (B9)- 86.50
Some Facts you should know about Flax seeds!
Always prefer chewing the seeds or consuming them in powder or oil form. Never swallow it like medicine. To get the omega 3 fats one needs to chew and get the desired nutrients.
Once grounded, the flax seeds need to get stored in the freezer only! That’s the only place where its oxidation can be prevented, otherwise, you lose all its nutritional content.
If you need to store flax seeds till long, always keep them whole along with their outer shell as it acts as a protective shield. This way you can store them for a year also.
One can always include flax seeds in their daily diet by choosing flax seeds oil and simply adding it in breakfast cereals, idlis, milkshakes, and smoothies, muffins, cakes, dosa, uttapam, soups, curries, wraps, paranthas, roasted snacks, yogurt, raita, sprinkle them on fruits or salads, or they can be always taken in their natural form!