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Saturday, April 5, 2008

10 Things To Know About Flaxseed

I chose Flaxseed for my first topic and found out some interesting things I didn't know!

This is what my web surfing research taught me:

1) Flax seed is an excellent source of both omega-3 fatty acids and lignans.

2) It is better utilized by the body if ground first (this I knew, actually... it's kind of a pain cleaning the coffee out of the grinder, but it's worth it!)

3) It has a longer shelf life if purchased whole (grind before using).

4) Some of the claimed health benefits include:
-anti-inflammatory properties
-protects bone health
-protects against heart disease, cancer and diabetes
-prevents and controls high blood pressure
-has cholesterol lowering benefits
-has beneficial fibre
-helps prevent dry eyes (taken orally - not applied directly to the eyes!!)
-offers joint pain relief
-can decrease hot flashes in postmenopausal women
-helps to lower blood cholesterol
-improves lactation in breastfeeding mothers
-helps the human fetus grow and develop
-helps prevent the formation of blood clots
-can aid in the clearing of skin conditions
-has shown benefits in those suffering from Lupus
-helps to relieve constipation and diarrhea
-reduces symptoms of arthritis, asthma, and allergies

5) Eating flax seed with cottage cheese theoretically enables your body to better absorb it (the essential fats in the flax bind to the proteins in the cottage cheese).

6) The quality of the oil in flax seed is affected by the climate in which it is grown. The best seeds are said to be grown in North Dakota and Canada because the colder climates result in better seed oil.

7) Separated flax fibres can be made into linen. The Egyptians used this ancient fabric to wrap mummies for embalming.

8) The word linen is derived from the Latin word "linum" which means flax plant (as well as Greek: "linon").

9) Linen is actually stronger when being washed (resulting in greater longevity than other fabrics) because flax yarns and fabrics increase their strength when wet by about 20%.
And finally...
10) In the middle ages, blue flax flowers were thought to protect those who wore them from sorcery.
(I had no idea!!) I think I'm going to enjoy writing this blog...
Thank you to my sources:

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