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Flaxseed - Natural remedy of the month

October 2008



FlaxseedThis month we look at FLAXSEED


Flaxseed has been around for more than 4,000 years, it was even known in the days of Hippocrates for its health benefits. Yet it is only recently that it is being accepted that this oddly named seed can bring enormous benefits in a range of areas.

The reason for the renewed interest is that Flaxseed is very high in omega-3 essential fatty acids. Omega-3 is now proven to have tremendous beneficial properties and is claimed to help lower cholesterol, stabilize blood sugar, lower the risk of breast, prostate, and colon cancers, and reduce the inflammation of arthritis, as well as the inflammation that accompanies certain illnesses such as Parkinson's disease and asthma.

In addition to the omega-3s, flaxseed also contains lignans and fibre. These are being studied for their health benefits as well. Lignans, for example, act as both phytoestrogens and antioxidants, while the fibre contained in the flaxseed is of both the soluble and insoluble type.

Recent research from the University of Toronto in Canada found that flaxseed may boost conventional treatment for breast cancer while other claims include its benefits for improving hair, skin and nail quality and aiding weight loss.

Flaxseed comes from flax, a tall annual with blue flowers. It grows in Britain and the seeds can come in brown or yellow – don’t worry, they both have the same nutritional benefits. The seeds have a pleasant, nutty flavour but beware, taking the seeds whole and they often pass straight through the body so you don’t get the benefit. Instead look for ground flaxseed or grind it yourself before eating. The easiest way to eat flaxseed is to sprinkle it onto cereals or you can mix it with honey and spread it onto toast.

Flaxseed is available from most health shops and many supermarkets and specialist stores.


Nutricentre Discount for laterlife visitors If in any doubt about any of the information covered in health and nutrition related articles and it's relevance for you, consult your GP.






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