How to Eat Flax Seeds

by sinclair89

An overview of different creative ways of how to eat flax seeds. The health benefits of flax seeds are extensive, but finding ways to consume them can be difficult.

What Are the Benefits of Flaxseed Nutrition?

First things first....

Before looking at how to eat flax seeds, it is important to look at the benefits of flaxseed nutrition. Flax seeds are an all natural and affordable health supplement. In terms of major preventative care, flax seeds have been shown to lower bad cholesterol, guard against heart disease and have been listed as a potential aid to prevent cancer. Chances are that the average user is more interested in the immediate health benefits of flax seeds. Fortunately, there are many. 

A Nutritional Super Food

Flax seeds contain vital omega-3 fatty acids, as well as magnesium, fiber, and ligans (prevention of breast cancer). Flax seeds have also been shown to decrease insulin resistence and protect against diabetes. A regular diet of flax seeds can also help the body defend against a whole host of diseases related to the immune system. The alpha linolenic acid in conjunction with the lignans promotes the healthy function of the immune system. Additionally, many people use flax seeds as a weight management system. Eating a small serving of flax seeds before a meal has been shown to curb appetite and encourage weight loss by preventing over-eating. 

Eating Flax Seeds

Creative ways to get the nutrition...

The wonderful thing about flax seeds is that they are such a versatile nutrient source. Determining how to eat flax seeds is limited only by your imagination, but here are a few of the best, and easiest, ways to eat flax seeds.

How to Eat Flax Seeds: Ten Ways!

1) Salads -  Flax seeds can work nicely sprinkled to taste into a variety of salads. Because salads themselves are creative endeavors, sprinkling in some flax is an easy and nutritious way to go. 

2) Cold Cereal - Similar to salads, sprinkling a little flax seed on a bowl of cereal every morning is SO easy. Don't over-do it though. Flax does have a taste and texture (not strong, but still noticeable) so if you like the taste of your frosted flakes, apply in moderation. 

3) On Yogurt - Sprinkle a little in and your will hardly know its there. Similarly, add it to cottage cheese, or even ice cream! 

Again, get creative! Learning how to eat flax seeds is largely a function of 

4) Hot Cereal - You can generally get away with adding more flax seed to hot cereal, because the texture, heat, and taste naturally help mask the grains. If a larger serving is what you want, go with hot cereal. 

5) Smoothie or Shake - Flax can be thrown in the blender with virtually anything and you will never know its there. With smoothies and shakes it can be a great option because many people like to use flax as a post-workout (or pre-workout) nutrient. 

6) Egg Substitute - Many Vegans have long used ground flax as a substitute for eggs in common recipes, especially in baking (just make sure you get the ratio right)! In fact, even if you do use eggs in a recipe, ground flax can still be added with no problems. 

7) PB & J - Okay, this one is a little specific, but sprinkling flax on the peanut butter in a sandwich is an easy way to get the nutrition you desire. 

8) Mashed Potatoes - You add salt and pepper anyway, why not throw in some ground flax seed? This is a great way to "spruce up" otherwise empty carbs. 

9) Pancakes/Waffles - Again, simple idea with serious health benefits. Sprinkle some into the batter before you make waffles or pancakes. 

10) Pasta Sauce - Add some flax to your pasta sauce and the kids will never know!

Hope this helps you find some creative ways of how to eat flax seeds!  

Grinding Your Own Flax Seeds

For the best freshness...
Grinding Your Own Flax Seeds
There is a lot to be said for purchasing a bean grinder to grind your own flax seeds. Freshness is a general concern when using flax seeds. If you want the absolute most nutritious packed servings, grinding flax seeds is a great way to go. The best part is that it is relatively simple to do. A basic coffee grinder should do the trick, but investing in a professional grade multi-purpose grinder is better if you plan on grinding flax seeds on a regular basis. 

Where to Buy Whole Flax Seeds

Spectrum Naturals - Flaxseed Whole, 15 oz seeds

Our Organic Whole Flaxseed comes from premium quality, triple-cleaned organic seeds; no low-weight, broken or cracked seeds. It is great with yogurt, sprinkled on cereal or ...

$6.99  $4.96
Bob's Red Mill Organic Whole Flaxseed Brown, 24-Ounce Packages (Pack of 4)

Natural raw whole. Provides fiber, lignans & omega-3 fats. Flaxseed was eaten by the early Greeks and Romans like nuts. You may eat the natural untreated seeds whole, ground ...

$23.92  $17.16
Premium Gold Whole Flax seed, 26 Ounce Jars (Pack of 4)

Premium Gold Flax, Inc. is the originator of the True Cold Milled process of natural shelf stable flaxseed, bringing flaxseed to new frontiers, not only as a stand-alone ...

Only $98.99
Updated: 02/27/2012, sinclair89
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How do YOU eat your flax seeds?

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Andrea on 09/13/2012

Interesting. I have seen it in the supermarket and have tried a coockie containing it. I will indulge because of its benefits, hence am researching it.

sinclair89 on 01/31/2012

@Clara: Absolutely! Raw fresh ground flax seed is always the best, but even the liquid flax seed gels have some great benefits. If you are considering how to use flax, from best to worst it goes:

1) Freshly Ground Flax Seed
2) Store Bought Sealed Flax Seed
3) Flax oil capsules

Again, for some people its much more convenient to pop a pill, but sprinkling flax on your food really isn't that hard if you make it a routine.

Clara on 01/31/2012

The fact that flax seeds have omega 3, 6, and 9 is enough for me to incorporate it into my diet. The other nutrients are a plus.

sinclair89 on 12/16/2011

@Michaela: I have heard about the neurotoxic cyanogen glycosides debate, but I confess to not knowing enough about it to make an authoritative judgement. I know some people who swear by eating whole flax seeds with a glass of water every day. If you do eat them raw it is important to chew them thoroughly and drink water in order to retain the full nutrients. Otherwise, the hull will protect the nutrients from being absorbed by the body.

Baking with them is another great way! Flax does not have any gluten in it, so for the growing number of gluten sensitive people out there it is a great option. I must confess I have not actually baked using flax as the main ingredient, but it is worth looking in to.

@dak: Thanks!

Michaela on 12/16/2011

Thank you for this information! I always put some flax seed into my hot cereal and in (and on) bread or rolls I bake. I used to put it into my muesli, too.

I like your 10 creative ways to eat flax seed, I'd love to try this with potatoes, pasta or pancakes.

I know that some people are careful about eating flax seed raw because of the neurotoxic cyanogen glycosides (?) it contains. I'm not quite sure what to make of this, so I prefer my flax seed cooked, most of the time anyway.

dak on 12/14/2011

Nice piece of information... liked it!

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