Flax seeds (Linum usitatissimum) — also known as common flax or linseeds — are small oil seeds that originated in the Middle East thousands of years ago. They are a popular health food due to their high content of heart-healthy omega-3-6-9 fats, fiber, and other unique plant compounds. Flax seeds have been linked to health benefits, such as improved digestion and a reduced risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and cancer. Flax seeds are a source of several vitamins and minerals needed for optimal health. These include thiamine (vitamin B1), copper, molybdenum, magnesium, and phosphorus. Flax seeds contain several beneficial plant compounds: p-Coumaric acid: This polyphenol is one of the main antioxidants in flax seeds. Ferulic acid: An antioxidant that may support treatments for several chronic diseases. Phytosterols: Related to cholesterol, phytosterols are found in the cell membranes of plants. They have been shown to have cholesterol-lowering effects. Lignans are present in almost all plants, acting as both antioxidants and phytoestrogens. Few foods are as rich in lignans as are flax seeds. Lignans have been linked to a decreased risk of heart disease and metabolic syndrome, as they may reduce levels of fat and glucose in your blood. Flax lignans also help reduce blood pressure, oxidative stress, and inflammation in the arteries.
Omega-3 [(n-3)] fatty acids have been linked to healthy aging throughout life. These essential fats are especially important for children, as they play an important role in growth and development and are associated with numerous health benefits.
The functions of the human immune system depend on the intake of micronutrients, which can act as antioxidants. Recent clinical trials have found that antioxidant supplementation can significantly improve certain immune responses. The harmful activities of free radicals are associated with damage to membranes, enzymes, and DNA. The ability of antioxidants to destroy free radicals protects the structural integrity of cells and tissues. One study found that n-3 PUFAs enhanced mitochondrial fatty acid oxidation and antioxidant capacity in humans.
Scientific research also found that omega-3 fatty acids may enhance brain health, promote better sleep, and improve ADHD and asthma symptoms
Omega-3 fatty acids (omega-3s) are a kind of fat that are found both in the human body and in foods, especially seafood and shellfish. The types of omega-3s found in the body differ. The most abundant in the brain is called Docosahexaenoic Acid (DHA). This type of omega-3 is important for brain and eye development and function throughout life. It is also beneficial for heart health. Eicosapentaenoic Acid (EPA) is another type of omega-3 fatty acid that is important for overall health, but unlike DHA, the body does not store EPA in large amounts. https://nccih.nih.gov/health/omega3/introduction.htm#hed2
Omega-3 fatty acids are among the most studied nutrients. Supplements have been shown to significantly reduce blood triglycerides. These are also a type a fat that are found within the blood but high levels of may raise the risk of coronary artery disease. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22113870
Omega-3s importance for brain health, especially DHA, is why they may benefit individuals with psychological and psychiatric conditions. They have also been shown to possibly reduce the risk of developing certain kinds of cancers. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15570047/
Like omega-3 fatty acids, omega-6 fatty acids are polyunsaturated fatty acids. Omega-6 is also an essential nutrient, meaning it must be obtained from supplements or diet. This kind of fatty acid is primarily used for energy, the most common omega-6 is linoleic acid, which can be converted into arachidonic acid (ARA). https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21366864
ARA is used to produce eicosanoids, a kind of signaling molecule, which can have negative side effects due to ARA being pro-inflammatory. Though they are pro-inflammatory they are still important chemicals in the immune system. However, when too many of them are made, they can increase inflammation. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21366864, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25149823
Though omega-6 is essential and important, most diets in the Western world contain exceeding levels of omega-6 fatty acids. It is therefore recommended that a ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids is 4:1 or less. Western diets have a ratio between 10:1 and 50:1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18408140
Unlike omegas 3 and 6, omega-9 fatty acids are monosaturated fatty acids. They are not an essential nutrient but that only means they can be produce by the body. The most common omega-9 fatty acid is called Oleic acid. Diets that replace saturated fats with omega-9 have been shown to decrease inflammation and increase blood sugar regulating hormone sensitivity. A large study found that high-monosaturated could reduce plasma triglycerides and “bad” very-low-density-protein cholesterol in patients with diabetes. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25626736, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9497173
Like omega-3 fatty acids, omega-6 fatty acids are essential polyunsaturated fatty acids. These fats are primarily used for energy. Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), a form of omega-6 fat, has certain health benefits. For example, one large study found that taking 3.2 grams of CLA supplements per day effectively reduced body fat mass in humans.
Consuming omega-9, a monounsaturated fatty acid, instead of other types of fat may have a number of beneficial health effects. One large study found that high-monounsaturated fat diets could reduce plasma triglycerides by 19% and “bad” very-low-density-lipoprotein (VLDL) cholesterol by 22% in patients with diabetes.
The same study found that humans who ate high-monounsaturated fat diets had less inflammation and better blood sugar regulating hormone sensitivity than those who ate diets high in saturated fat.
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This product has not been evaluated by the FDA. It is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.