If you’re a fan of home cooking, you probably know how delicious nuts and seeds can be. Between chia seeds, almonds, cashews, pumpkin seeds, and much much more, seeds are an excellent way to add crunch and flavor to any dish.
Flax seeds are a nutritious option that can be used in a variety of ways … let’s learn all about the benefits of flax!
Facts about flax
Flax is a plant-based food that provides the body with healthy fat, antioxidants, and fiber. Some people call flax a “functional food,” which means that you can eat it to boost your health.
History of flax
Flax originated as a crop in ancient Egypt and China. In Asia, flax has been commonly used in Ayurvedic medicine for thousands of years.
The nutrients in flaxseed include lignans, antioxidants, fiber, protein, and polyunsaturated fatty acids, including omega-3. Consuming these nutrients may help lower the risk of some health conditions.
Similar to other plant-based foods, flaxseed is rich in antioxidants, which can help prevent disease by removing molecules (called free radicals) from the body. Flaxseed is also an excellent source of lignans, which have antioxidant properties, and according to some scientists, flaxseed may be over 800 times richer in lignans than other foods.
Different types of flax
Yes, there are different types of flax! When the seed pods swell and turn brown after blooming, the seeds are harvested. Canada supplies the majority of the brown flax seeds, while North America grows the golden variety. Let’s learn more about the different types of flax and what flaxseed is turned into!
Brown vs golden flax
There are two types of flax seeds–brown and golden– and both are found in health food and specialty stores. Most people find that the dark brown seeds have a stronger flavor than the golden flaxseeds. Both are great sources of alpha-linolenic acid, although the dark seeds are higher in ALA than the golden variety.
For a more concentrated dose of all the benefits flaxseed has to offer, many people rely on flaxseed oil, which is extracted oil from the seed. Since it’s an oil, it’s richer than ground flaxseed, but an awesome supplement on its own.
One teaspoon of flaxseed oil contains 40 calories. Not only can flaxseed oil be consumed, but it can be used directly on the skin to help with minor skin problems as well!
Flax seed flour, or ground flax seed, offers some benefits over whole flax seed. Whole flax passes through your system undigested, which causes your body to miss out on some of the health benefits.
To combat this, try replacing 1/2 to 1 cup of the flour in your next recipe with ground flax seed. Substitute each egg with 1 tbsp. of flax and 3 tbsp. of water mixed together, or replace 3 tbsp. of ground flax seed for every 1 tbsp. of margarine, butter or oil called for in the recipe.https://inflact.com/downloader/instagram/photo/
Popular flax recipes
This versatile little seed can be used in sooo many different ways! During breakfast, lunch, dinner AND snack time, flax is sure to add a little extra crunch and flavor.
Here are a few ideas on how to use flax in the kitchen:
Super green smoothie bowl
If you ask Kermit the Frog, it’s not easy being green … but this delicious green smoothie bowl sure is easy to make! ;) This smoothie bowl has a bright green color and uses nut butter for extra protein, avocado for healthy fats, and flaxseed for fiber! Not to mention bananas, which add a natural hint of sweetness.
Just add all ingredients to your blender and ta-da! A healthy smoothie ready in just 10 minutes.
Green mango and flaxseed salad
Did you know that flax seeds are a great fiber source for those with Celiac disease or a gluten-sensitivity? Yep, this gluten-free seed is used in this tasty green mango and flaxseed salad. The dressing combines flaxseed with lime and orange juice, olive oil, vinegar, and salt and pepper.
Then, the base of the salad contains beans, mixed salad leaves, mango, and orange segments … yum! A refreshing and citrusy meal.
Granola trail mix
While our tried and true trail mix doesn’t include flaxseed, why not include a tablespoon for an extra dose of fiber? Other ingredients include granola, dried cranberries or raisins, milk chocolate M&M’s, and roasted peanuts. The perfect mix of sweet and savory!
Try bringing this trail mix along on your next camping trip or outdoor adventure. The fiber-rich ingredients will help keep your stamina and energy up.
Oatmeal white chocolate chip & blueberry cookies
Next time you’re making our Proper Good oatmeal white chocolate chip & blueberry cookies, consider a flaxseed-based swap! Try trading out all purpose flour for flax flour for a high fiber alternative. Or, sprinkle a few flax seeds on top of each cookie before sticking them in the oven for a nutty, crunchy surprise!
Blueberries give these cookies natural sweetness, so we’d recommend adding those in!
Proper Good Oatmeal
Because we use only the most wholesome ingredients, all of our oatmeal mixes include flaxseed! So for times when you’re not sure how to get more fiber in your diet, our oatmeal is just the ticket. The base oatmeal uses just 5 simple ingredients: steel cut oats, chia, flax, hemp seeds, and coconut oil … that’s it!
Choose from one of our mouth watering oatmeal varieties:
And of course, the classic Perfectly Plain Oatmeal!
We hope you’ve found this blog post helpful and educational … and that you’re now ready to give flaxseed a try in some of your meals! Let us know if you tried and liked any of the recipes shared here.