Flax and Flaxseed - the perfect high fiber food!
Flax could be the treasure at the end of your search for the perfect high fiber food. Flax is an oil seed productively grown in rich river valleys throughout the world. It has by far the highest amount of dietary fiber of any healthy foods. It offers soluble and insoluble fiber, a whopping 26%.
Not only is flax a high fiber food, it also has protein, vitamins and minerals, and lignans. Since you're wondering, lignans are plant fibers with phytonutrients and antioxidants found in such high fiber foods such as soybeans, broccoli, some berries and pumpkin seeds.
Flax has the highest amount of lignans than other foods, about 100 to 400 times more. Neither wheat bran, rye, soybeans nor oats can compare with the amount of lignan found in flaxseeds.
Not all flax oil is alike. There is basic flax oil, high lignan flax oil, an even higher lignan flax oil and finally, ultra lignan flax oil. It seems a bit overwhelming, but if you want lignans look for products that are labeled unfiltered and unrefined. This is because during processing, lignan content may be dramatically reduced.
High fiber friends, beware! Flax oil does not have the fiber benefit that the ground seed supplies.
The benefits of fiber from flax are only available in ground flax seed. The body cannot get the necessary lignans and alpha linolenic acids from the indigestible unground flax seed. It must be ground before it is consumed using a coffee grinder or blender.
It is recommended taking flaxseed twice a day. Mix ground flaxseed with your favorite beverage. It takes no time at all and will supply you with the high fiber count of 10 grams of fiber.
But this isn't the only way to have your flax. You can add ground flaxseed to bread, biscuits, muffins, cookies, cakes, waffles, or pancakes. Kids can use it as a topping on yogurt or ice cream. Try it sprinkled on pizza...they'll love it.
Another good reason to include flaxseed in your high fiber health regime is because of its high amount of alpha linolenic acid (ALA), a type of omega-3 fatty acid. Omega-3 may help keep your bad cholesterol (LDL) levels and blood triglycerides in check, thereby lowering your blood pressure.
By keeping blood platelets from being sticky, it lowers the risk of heart attacks and heart disease.
Flax's high fiber content makes it nature's lubricant and helps to prevent constipation and promotes good colon health. It absorbs and transports fats along the digestive tract at a quicker pace.
Your weight is managed because of the fullness flax provides when consumed. It even promotes healthy hair and skin.
Research has shown that lignans can possibly help to fight against breast cancer. This is because lignans bind with estrogen receptors and seem to have potential anticancer properties. Lignans help maintain healthy immune system and may be effective in treating inflammatory diseases.
As research into the function of lignans in cancer prevention continues, flaxseed shares center stage as a high-fiber food. These little seeds just might be the most healing food in the world!
Today flax is experiencing an amazing revival among nutritionists, health-minded folk, and savvy cooks. If you want a high fiber food that does it all, flax is as good as it gets.