During Heart Month, Get Your Flax Straight
Flax seeds are getting lots of attention these days, and for good reason.
These tiny seeds are a great source of healthy omega-3 fatty acids, provide antioxidant protection, have anti-inflammatory effects and give our foods a good boost of protein and dietary fiber.
What does all that mean for our health?
The plant source of omega-3 fatty acid present in flax seeds (known as alpha linolenic acid, or ALA) is responsible for reducing inflammation, allowing our immune system to function better. The soluble fiber in flaxseeds helps us lower our cholesterol, preventing clogged arteries that can lead to heart attack, high blood pressure and stroke.
Soluble fiber also is known to keep our blood sugar stable, an important factor for the many Americans who struggle with type 2 diabetes. The insoluble fiber in flax is responsible for keeping our guts happy and healthy, helping to alleviate constipation and keeping our digestion regular. We can also thank flax for helping with weight management. This is because it expands when ingested in our stomach, making us feel fuller and eat less!
There are many ways to incorprate flax into your diet. Try sprinkling even just a teaspoon of ground flax into your morning bowl of cereal, yogurt or oatmeal.
You can also incorporate into baked muffins, breads and pancakes or better yet, try making a hearty, flax meatloaf for dinner — a recipe we know your family will love!