Flaxseeds are also known as linseeds and possess a number of health benefits. These brown seeds with an earthy aroma are quite popular as a health food. Also known as alasi/ alsi in Hindi and Urdu, these wonder seeds originated in the Middle East more than a thousand years ago. Flaxseeds offer a number of health benefits such as weight loss, cancer prevention, controls diabetes and reduces the risk of heart disease. Indians generally grind the Alsi seeds into powder by roasting it to gain its maximum benefits and use it in dishes such as oatmeal, smoothies, raita, chutney, mukhwas and buttermilk.
How Flaxseeds Help in Losing Weight
According to health Institute research, Flaxseeds are a very important ingredient when it comes to losing weight. It provides a number of nutritional qualities which accelerate the process of weight loss. Let us discuss the various ways in which Alsi seeds assist in the same.
Less in calories: Flaxseed contain only 13 calories per 1 teaspoon (2.5g) of ground seeds & 18 calories 1 teaspoon (3.4g) of whole seeds. thus it can be deliberately added to any of your recipes to make it tasty and healthy.
High fiber content: Flaxseeds contain a high amount of fiber, i.e. around 0.7 gm of dietary fiber per 1 teaspoon. Dietary fiber helps you feel full for a longer time, cutting down the unnecessary intake of calories. It also helps in controlling the blood sugar which does not allow excess fat to accumulate.
Lignans: Alsi seeds contain important nutrition elements known as lignans which increase the metabolism rate and lower the cholesterol level. They are also antioxidant in nature which helps in cancer prevention and cleaning the internal organs of the body.
Contains Omega- 3s fatty acid: Omega- 3s fatty acid is responsible for preventing obesity by producing adiponectin. It ultimately regulates the metabolism and keeps the weight down. Flaxseeds are #1 source of Omega3s fatty acid for Vegetarians.
Low in carbohydrates and high in vitamin: Low carbohydrate content helps in maintaining a healthy body weight. It is also rich in Vitamin B which helps in keeping you full for long.
Potassium, magnesium and zinc content: Flaxseed contain a high amount of these nutrients which help in losing weight.
Consuming Flaxseeds on a daily basis will surely benefit you in losing weight due to number of health benefits it offers, it also help me allot in my weight loss.
How to Eat Flaxseeds and its Daily Dosage For Weight Loss
You should consume around 2 teaspoons of Flaxseeds every day and add it in your meals to stay in shape and to lose weight.
Consuming Flaxseeds in the ground from rather than whole would be more beneficial as it would be easier to digest.
Taking whole Alsi seeds will not be equally beneficial since it is bound to be excreted from the body without extracting its nutritional qualities. You can add them in various dishes such as oatmeal or you can add the Flaxseed powder in the chapatti dough to camouflage its taste. Other options include addition to the vegetable salad, eggs, porridge or soup.
Flaxseeds Nutrition Facts
One teapoon of ground Flaxseeds or around 2.5 g of Flaxseeds contain the following amount of nutrition.
- Calories: 13
- Protein:0.5 g
- Fiber: 0.7 g
- Carbohydrates:0.7 g
- Fat: 1.1 g
- Polyunsaturated fat 0.7 g
- Sodium: 0.8 mg
- Potassium: 20.3 mg
- Calcium: 0%
- Magnesium: 2% (according to 2000 calorie diet)
More Health Benefits of Flaxseeds
Apart from weight loss, Alsi seeds provide many more health benefits as discussed below.
- Alsi seeds help in controlling diabetes. It builds insulin through the fiber which is present that helps in controlling blood glucose and combating type 2 diabetes. Daily intake of Flaxseed helps in improving blood sugar levels.
- Flaxseeds are beneficial for hair and skin too. The omega 3 fatty acids help in rejuvenating skin and making it smooth. It efficiently treats acne, blemishes and other skin allergies. Along with the skin, it benefits the hair too. It makes the hair healthy, smooth and shiny. It treats hair fall, dandruff and dry scalp efficiently.
- Alsi Seeds protects from breast cancer, prostate cancer and colon cancer. The fatty acids and ALA components help in inhibiting tumor growth.
- Flaxseeds are beneficial in curing hypertension. Working stress and problems in a person’s life results in high blood pressure that can lead to hypertension. Consuming Flaxseeds can help in achieving lower blood pressure, hence curing hypertension.
- It is beneficial in curing inflammation. Since Flaxseeds are gluten free, they are anti- inflammatory in nature. Regular consumption of Flaxseed helps in curing gluten sensitivity, Celiac disease and inflammation.
- Consumption of Flaxseeds improves digestion and treats other digestive system related problems such as Crohn’s disease. Flaxseeds protect the lining of the digestive tract and promote food for friendly bacteria that cleanse the system.
- Lignans present in the Flaxseed have estrogenic properties which are helpful for women during the menopause phase. It maintains the cycle regularly in menstruating women and reduces the risk of osteoporosis.
- The lignan content in Alsi seeds help in reducing the liver disease risks and protect it.
- It protects the heart and reduces cardiovascular diseases.
- Hormonal imbalance such as hot flashes and night sweat are controlled after regular consumption of Flaxseed. The overall psychological health is improved too.
- Flaxseeds are a boon for piles problem. Consuming Flaxseeds helps in curing piles due to the high fiber content and it also treats constipation efficiently.
- Flaxseed contain alpha- linolenic acid which helps in treating asthma and other related allergies.
- Important dietary fatty acids which prevent dry eyes and protect them from stroke and other related problems are present in Alsi seeds.
- Flaxseeds also contain glycosides known as cyanogens which are helpful in treating thyroid due to the appropriate iodine intake.
- Boiling Flaxseeds in water and consuming it once in a day can efficiently treat cough and cold.
Flaxseed Weight Loss Recipes
There are many flaxseed recipes, which works best specially for weight loss.
You will need: 2 tbsp Flaxseeds, 2 tsp lemon juice, chopped strawberries, chopped bananas, 2 tbsp honey, 1 cup low fat milk or soy milk.
Step 1: Combine all the ingredients together and mix in it a blender to a thick consistency.
Step 2: Add a small amount of water to make the texture smooth.
Step 3: Pour into glasses and garnish with chopped bananas and strawberries.
You will need: 1 cup grated bottle gourd, 1 cup low fat yogurt, finely chopped mint leaves, ¼ tsp cumin powder, ¼ tsp black salt, 1 tsp honey, 2 tbsp ground Alsi seeds and salt.
Step 1: Cook the bottle gourd with water in a pan for 4 to 5 mins and keep it aside.
Step 2: Mix the rest of the ingredients in a bowl.
Step 3: Add the cooked bottle gourd and keep it in the refrigerator to chill.
Serve cool with chapatti or paratha.
You will need: 7- 8 almonds, 4 eggs, ½ cup ground Flaxseeds, salt, ½ tsp baking soda, 2 tsp honey, ½ tsp apple cider vinegar and butter.
Step 1: Beat the eggs after breaking them in a bowl and keep aside.
Step 2: Grind the almonds into powder and add the eggs as well as the remaining ingredients. Mix it well.
Step 3: Take a loaf tin and grease it with a very small amount of butter.
Step 4: Pour the mixture into it. Pre heat the oven at 150 degree C and bake it for around 35 to 40 mins.
Step 5: Remove the loaf, cool it and cut into desired number of slices.
You can serve this bread with peanut butter or with coffee.
Is It Safe To Eat Flaxseed During Pregnancy?
Flaxseeds are considerably safe during pregnancy if taken in moderate amounts. Alsi seeds contain omega- 3 fatty acids which are necessary for the health of the baby. It also contains fiber and laxative properties which are necessary for the body. Flaxseed prevent hot flushes which are common during pregnancy and control the blood sugar level.
Consumption of Flaxseeds during Diabetes
Consuming 1 teaspoon of Flaxseed daily certainly helps in controlling the blood sugar level. The fatty acids present in Flaxseeds improve triglycerides, cholesterol, and hemoglobin A1c levels in diabetic patients.
Flaxseed Side Effects
Despite the various health benefits of Flaxseeds, there are certain ill effects associated with it when taken in large amounts. It may cause certain gastrointestinal side effects such as constipation, diarrhea, nausea, bloating, gas and stomach ache.
It is necessary to consume Alsi seeds in small quantities per day to avoid any such problems.
Difference between Linseed and Flaxseed, Milled Flaxseed
Linseed and flaxseed are the same with different names in different regions. Milled flaxseed is the ground form of whole Flaxseeds. It is advisable to use milled Flaxseed instead of whole Flaxseeds to gain the maximum benefits from the same. Milled Flaxseeds are easy to digest and provide nutritional qualities to the fullest.
Difference between Brown and Golden Flaxseed
However, there is a considerate difference between brown Flaxseed and golden Flaxseed. Apart from the color,
- Brown Flaxseeds contain 2.5 grams of alpha- linolenic acid and golden Flaxseeds contain only 2.1 grams of ALA.
- Golden seeds are completely digested than brown flaxseed
- Brown Seeds are tastier then Golden flaxseed.
- Golden Flaxseeds are easy to sneak into recipes due to their color and can be easily fed to adamant children for nutritional benefits.
Here in India Brown Flaxseeds are easily available at any grocery store but golden Flaxseeds are hard to find. However Brown Flaxseeds are grown in Canada and USA is the largest producer of golden Flaxseed, especially North Dakota.
Flaxseeds vs Fish Oil on Fatty Acids
Both fish oil and Flaxseed oil contain omega 3 fatty acids which are beneficial for a number of reasons. Omega 3 fatty acids such as ALA are required to prevent cardiovascular diseases. One 1200mg fish oil pill contains 180 mg EPA and 120 mg DHA, one flaxseed pill will contribute to only 12 mg of EPA and 6 mg of DHA. Which means Fish oil have 15-20 times more EPA and DHA then Flaxseed oil, So according to Harvard.edu Fish oil is better than Flaxseed oil. But the best part is you can enjoy Flaxseed ground naturally in many ways which is easy and totally vegan.
Flaxseeds or Walnut for omega- 3 fatty acids?
Rich in omega 3, Flaxseeds and walnuts are considered a healthy food option and should be included in your daily diet. While both contain important nutrients, there is only 0.91 grams of omega- 3 fatty acids in 10 gram chopped walnuts as compared to 2.28 grams in 10 gram whole Flaxseed. So flaxseed wins on omega-3 fatty acids base.
Where to Buy Flaxseeds
Flaxseeds are easily available at your nearby grocery stores or market. You can also order them online on popular grocery sites such as Grofers or Big Basket, or organic Alsi seeds from sites like Amazon. Patanjali is a brand which sells products with the fairest rates and unprocessed methods. You can easily buy Flaxseed from a nearby Pantanjali store or online. Flaxseeds are also available online in the form of powder. The current rate of Flaxseeds per kg in India is around 250 to 300 Rs.