Flax. Surely you’ve heard of this little miracle seed by now. In recent years, the superfood formerly best-known as linseed has become a staple in the refrigerators of anyone who wants to reduce inflammation and add more fiber, protein, and heart-healthy omegas to their diet.
Like many other superfoods that have finally hit the mainstream, the use of flax dates back to Ancient Egypt, where its use was extended to making linens for mummification and ship sails. Today, flax is still one of humankind’s most important crops, though we eat it more often than we wear it. It’s the most plentiful source of antioxidant lignans ever discovered, and consuming flax has shown promise in the following areas:
- cancer prevention
- healthy cholesterol levels
- weight control
- hormonal balance
- osteoporosis prevention
- prevention of liver disease
- relief from Carpal-Tunnel Syndrome
- improved quality of intestinal lining
- decreased inflammation
Flaxseed is additionally a good source of omega-3 fatty acids and certain minerals like magnesium and calcium, which team up perfectly with those plant lignans to bolster the immune system. And when we’re talking about the immune system, you must include protein. The protein in flax carries its own complete profile of amino acids, making it a natural, plant-sourced whole food that strengthens bones and helps keep innumerable bodily processes in balance.
Internal wellbeing is paramount, but you can’t count out any potential beauty benefits. The healthy fats and B vitamins in flax can add moisture and strength to hair and nails, while the anti-inflammatory properties are good for skin conditions like acne and rosacea.
Grind It Up
You don’t have to chow down on a bunch of tiny seeds to deliver the health benefits of flax. In fact, ground flax is more easily absorbed by the digestive tract, since the casings of these small, oblong seeds may not dissolve completely when eaten whole. That isn’t to say that the coat isn’t nutritious; that’s where you’ll find a lot of the fiber.
Ground flax is also much more versatile than intact flax seeds. Mixed with a little water, it creates a cholesterol-free egg replacement in baked goods. It can be sprinkled on yogurt or salads, and is a popular addition to smoothies and shakes.
As we told you in the title, one of the most fabulous features of ground flax is that it’s a nutritional boost that doesn’t try to meddle with the flavor or texture of other ingredients, so while you probably won’t be able to taste it inside of a shake (flax does have a subtle, nutty flavor on its own), you’ll be able to feel it.
Our personal favorite use for flax is inside of our Dragon Slayer shake. With just a few ingredients, you can get all of the cholesterol-busting, immunity-amplifying power a healthy, energetic life requires. All you need is:
- one scoop of Blast Reds
- one scoop of Blast Whey (or Blast Vegan Protein)
- two teaspoons of ground flax
Dosage and Storage
Ground flax is generally safe and well-tolerated, but because it contains a lot of fiber, it’s best to start out at no more than two tablespoons of ground flax per serving.
If you are taking blood thinners or blood pressure medication, you should speak to a doctor before adding therapeutic doses of flax into your diet.
You always want to keep all flax products fresh for maximum potency. Ground flax, whole flax, and flaxseed oil are best kept refrigerated.