Six Amazing Benefits of Flaxseed Water
Flaxseed water is a natural drink that’s easy to make. It can be used as an ingredient in many recipes, from infusions to smoothies. So, what are the benefits of flaxseed water?
In the last few years, the use of flax seeds has become extremely popular in the preparation of bread and other baked goods. In fact, flaxseed has been classified as a functional food.
Functional foods are foods that, as well as their nutritional benefits, are beneficial to the body and help reduce or prevent certain risk factors or diseases.
Flaxseed comes from the flax plant. It’s a known food source that was used in ancient cultures. For example, the Egyptians used it as a food, a medicine, and a laxative.
For some time, flaxseed was only commercially produced for its oil production. However, thanks to the popularization of its health benefits and use in preventative medicine, flax seeds and now, flaxseed water, have received a great deal of attention.
The properties of flaxseed
Flaxseed contains some rather interesting compounds. Let’s take a look at them.
Alpha-linolenic acid (ALA)
According to scientific literature, ALA has a high omega-3 content (about 50 to 55 percent of the total fatty acids of its composition). For this reason, it contributes to a reduction in the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases.
About 28 percent of a seed’s weight is dietary fiber. Of that, 25 percent is soluble fiber. It reduces the absorption of cholesterol and glucose. The remaining 75 percent is insoluble fiber which increases waste products and reduces the time of gastrointestinal transit.
Among its other benefits, flaxseed aids gastrointestinal transit, may help prevent constipation, and regulates blood cholesterol levels.
In addition, thanks to its high fiber content, blood sugar levels don’t rise sharply after its ingestion. Therefore, it favors glucose control. This isn’t the same in the case of linseed oil.
There have been different investigations regarding the inclusion of flax seeds in the diets of patients with type 2 diabetes. For example, in one four-week study, flax supplementation was found to reduce fasting blood glucose and glycosylated hemoglobin levels.
You might also be interested to read: 10 Health Benefits of Adding Flaxseed to Your Diet
Flaxseed contains certain substances that, when combined with gastric juices and enzymes, are transformed into lignans. These chemicals protect DNA and also provide antioxidant effects.
Thus, adding flax seeds to your diet can inhibit the development of heart and blood vessel diseases.
In addition, animal studies have shown the ability of lignans to improve insulin sensitivity and reduce oxidative stress. As a matter of fact, both processes could delay the development of diabetes. However, more research is needed to corroborate this effect in humans.
The benefits of flaxseed water
Since flax seeds have medicinal potential, flaxseed water does as well. Below, you can discover the main benefits of consuming it, as well as flax seeds and flaxseed oil:
- Helps reduce inflammation and fluid retention. That’s because it has anti-inflammatory and diuretic properties.
- Supports weight loss, as it has a satiating effect, which prevents cravings between meals.
- Provides an extra supply of antioxidants to the body, which supports the health of all organs and systems.
- Helps prevent some of the symptoms of menopause.
- Favors gastrointestinal transit, since it has a laxative effect.
- Reduces the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
We should note, among other things, that flaxseed is ideal for increasing muscle mass formation since it provides plant proteins. In addition, it reduces the glycemic response because it contains starch.
Flaxseeds also contain amino acids such as arginine, aspartic acid, and glutamic acid. Therefore, consuming them helps curb the sensation of anxiety and boosts immune functions.
According to the Flax Council of Canada, to meet the recommended daily amounts of omega-3 fatty acids, you simply have to consume eight grams of ground flaxseed or five grams of flaxseed oil.
Flaxseed water recipes
In addition to adding it to salads, bread, or meals, you can use flaxseed to prepare a different, nutritious, and refreshing drink. You can also make it as an infusion, or drink it on its own or with other natural ingredients.
Below, we share a couple of flaxseed water recipes you can make at home.
Flaxseed water is a light drink that can help hydrate you and satisfy your hunger if you have cravings between meals.
- 1 cup of water (250 ml).
- 1 teaspoon of ground flaxseed (5 g).
- Honey, cinnamon sticks (optional).
- In a cup of warm or cold water, add the ground flaxseed.
- Let it sit for 30 minutes.
- When the water has taken on a gel consistency, drink it.
- You can add flaxseed water to smoothies and natural juices. Some people also like to incorporate cinnamon sticks, juice, or the zest of a lemon.
This is is an option for when you want to enjoy a warm and comforting drink.
- 1 teaspoon of flaxseed (5 g).
- 1 cup of boiling water (250 ml).
- Add the flaxseed to a bowl along with the boiling water.
- Wait until the ground seeds start to release their properties.
- When the tea has reached a comfortable temperature, drink it.
You can find another healthy recipe you might like to try here: Medicinal Flaxseed Drink to Improve Skin Health
Theoretically, flaxseed can have contraindications, especially in high doses. Keep in mind that the recommended daily intake shouldn’t exceed 30 grams. This is about two heaped tablespoons.
Some of the most common contraindications of its consumption are:
- Reduced calcium, zinc, and iron absorption.
- Decreased protein digestibility.
- Diarrhea if the recommended daily dose is exceeded.
- Interaction with certain drugs. The Mayo Clinic claims this can occur in the case of anticoagulants, estrogens, and medications for diabetes and hypertension. For this reason, you should consult a doctor if you’re taking medication or are suffering from any illness.
In addition, immature flax seeds can be toxic because they contain small amounts of cyanide. However, our body has the ability to neutralize these small amounts.
Up until now, no cyanide has been detected in baked goods, such as breads or cereals.
Flax seeds appear to be safe for pregnant and lactating women if consumed in the indicated dietary amounts. Nevertheless, research is scarce, and we recommend consulting a doctor before consuming them.
The following people shouldn’t consume flaxseed:
- Breast, uterine, ovarian, or prostate cancer patients.
- People with intestinal obstruction, narrowing of the esophagus, or bowel inflammation.
Remember that, if you decide to integrate flaxseed into your diet, you must do so moderately and take the contraindications into account, especially if you’re following any pharmacological treatment.It might interest you...