We’ve heard a lot about antioxidants lately and with good reason. They provide essential uses to our health and are an important anti-aging supplement. Typically, antioxidants come from fruits and vegetables, but the lowly flaxseed is perhaps one of our most powerful sources.
What is Flaxseed Oil?
Flaxseed Oil is also known as Linseed Oil. The oil is developed from the seeds of the flax plant. Typically, linseed oil is the yellowish drying oil that is extracted and used as a carrier in oil paint and also as a wood finish. When the flax seed is cold pressed without the extraction, it is called flaxseed oil and is used as a nutritional supplement. More information than you need to know? Maybe, but I thought it was interesting that a lowly plant seed could be used for both furniture finish AND the next best nutritional supplement since the multi-vitamin.
Flaxseed oil is rich in Omega 3 fatty acids which are superior in a whole host of ways – heart disease, inflammatory bowel disease, and arthritis to name a few. Omega 3 fatty acids are most often linked with fish oils but flaxseed oil furnishes a good alternative source of the Omega 3’s for the vegetarian that prefers plant based supplements.
Lignan is a chemical compound created in plants that is a powerful antioxidant. Flaxseed oil contains one of the highest concentration of lignan known. Why is that important? Studies have shown populations that ingest a high amount of lignans have a lower experience of cancer. Lignans are antioxidant molecules with anti-cancer, anti-viral, and anti-bacterial qualities. These plant hormones are also believed to block the formation of hormone-based tumors.
Here’s an interesting tidbit:
Dark chocolate is also an antioxidant. It has the same antioxidants as tea.
Antioxidants have proven to have extensive health uses and anti-aging qualities. As an antioxidant, the flaxseed oil’s lignans can help increase the body’s immune system, keeping harmful, disease-causing germs from deteriorating the cells. Lignans also increase the formation of a substance tied to estrogen and conducts it out of the body which also makes it helpful in relieving PMS symptoms.
Other uses of flaxseed oil include helping to shelter the body against inflammations, high blood pressure, lowering cholesterol and triglycerides and improves the absorption of calcium.
As you can see, flaxseed oil is a nutritional supplement that should not be overlooked. Easy to take and less expensive than the extensive supplements touted today.