How to include flaxseed in your diet
Flaxseed oil is the world’s richest source of omega-3 fatty acids, containing 58% by weight, over two times the omega-3s found in fish.
Researchers also rank flaxseeds as number one among all commonly eaten food in fibre-related polyphenols called lignans with flaxseed having about seven times as many lignans the second-runner-up, sesame seeds.
You can eat flaxseeds, whole or ground, or take flaxseed oil as a supplement. If you eat the whole flaxseed, you benefit from the complete nutritional package that comes with the complete seed, including ample amino acids (35% by weight), essential fatty acids, vitamin B complex, pro-vitamin A, vitamin E and minerals magnesium, potassium, zinc and selenium.
Flaxseeds have a slightly nutty taste and can easily be incorporated into a variety of foods. Here are 13 simple and delicious ways to add flaxseed to your diet…
Adding Whole or Ground Flaxseed to Your diet
- Slice up a banana, add a dollop of full fat organic Greek yoghurt, sprinkle 2tbs of ground flax and 2tbs chopped walnuts on top and enjoy!
- Add 2tbs of ground flax to your morning smoothie. Try this delicious and super simple blueberry and flax smoothie.
- Stir 2tbs of ground flax into your morning cereal or porridge (oatmeal, quinoa etc.)
- If you have a dehydrator, you can make flax crackers or you can buy them ready-made.
- Add ground flax to date balls.
- Add ground flax to dips.
- Add ground flax to cakes, muffins, bread.
- Add whole flaxseeds to soups just before you eat. Eat immediately!! (flaxseeds turn gelatinous when added to liquid so don’t leave your soup to sit for any length of time. Trust me on this!)
- Ground flax can be used as an egg substitute in baking as it as it becomes gelatinous and binds when added to water.
- If you’re short on time, you can add 2 tbs of ground flax to half a glass of water and knock it back, or allow it to sit for a while then drink it. It will get gelatinous though if you leave it to sit.
Adding flaxseed oil to your diet:
You can easily include cold pressed flaxseed oil in daily recipes.
- Salad dressings are an excellent way to include flax oil in a meal. Simply substitute flax oil in the recipe.
- Add 3 tbs flax oil to a hummus recipe.
- Add 1 tbs of flax oil to a smoothie.
Storage and Some Dos and don’ts with flaxseed
- You can buy flaxseeds whole or ground. Whole flax seeds have a longer shelf life and it’s better to buy whole flax seeds and then freshly grind them yourself. Ground flaxseeds are more likely to oxidise and spoil.
- Be sure there is no moisture on the flaxseeds when you buy them.
- Store flaxseeds in an airtight container in a cool, dark place.
- Freshly grind flaxseeds in small quantities and store them in the fridge in a tightly sealed container to prevent them becoming rancid.
- Ground flaxseed stored properly in the fridge will keep for up to 6 months, in shaa Allah.
- Be sure to buy organic cold pressed flaxseed oil in a dark bottle, and keep it in a cool place.
- Never cook with flaxseed oil at very high temperatures or use flaxseed oil that has been exposed to extreme heat or has gone rancid.
- Never use commercial linseed/flaxseed oil as this has been highly processed and may be more harmful than good.
As flaxseeds contain moderate amounts of oxalate, those with a medical history of oxalate-containing kidney stones should avoid consuming too much flaxseed.