Flaxseeds are small oilseeds with a nutty flavor. Compared to pulses (like beans) or cereal grains (like wheat), oilseeds contain a higher percentage of fat. While we commonly think of flaxseed as a food that we eat, it also offers other practical uses such as making paper and fabric from its fiber.
Flaxseed is a great source of fiber and polyunsaturated fats. In order to benefit from all the nutrition that flaxseed has to offer, you need to grind whole flaxseed first. Without grinding the whole flaxseed, our bodies will not be able to access the omega 3 rich oils found inside the seed. Due to its high omega 3 rich content, flaxseed may reduce cardiovascular risks, decrease inflammation, and maintain healthy skin. Its rich fiber content may also help reduce cholesterol and help regulate blood glucose levels. Flaxseed is also a rich source of lignans (a type of phytonutrient); there is a growing interest in research on its potential positive effects against cancer, menopausal symptoms, and osteoporosis.
Most Canadians are not eating enough fiber, but sneaking in a tablespoon of ground flaxseed can easily help you meet your daily fiber intake. You can add ground flaxseed to muffins, cereal, oatmeal, or even use it as a vegan egg substitute. To help you gain all the health benefits from flaxseed, Fresh Fit Foods has created a satisfying Granola Parfait!