Facts About Flax
- Flax is a slender stalked plant, with flowers that are usually blue in colour. Once the flower is gone, the onion-shaped seed boll begins to form. Upon ripening, the boll can contain up to ten shiny, flattened, oval seeds that vary in colour from reddish brown to a golden yellow.Canada is the largest producer of flaxseed in the world, representing about 40% of world production.
- While there are several different varieties of flax, there are of two main types of flax: one is grown primarily for its oil and the other primarily for its fiber.
- The seed from flax is full of disease-fighting compounds, including omega-3 fatty acid alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), fibre, lignans (which are powerful antioxidants) and high-quality protein.
- Flaxseed has been found to help protect against heart disease, inflammatory disorders and certain cancers.
- Whole flaxseed is high in fibre, but grinding flaxseed will release omega 3 fats, phytoestrogens and more fibre. You can grind flaxseed using a spice mill, coffee grinder, or food processor or blender.
- Flaxseed is one of the best plant sources of lignans. Lignans are high in antioxidants and help regulate hormone levels. Research indicates that lignans may help to reduce the risk of breast and prostrate cancer.