Stand-out Benefits of Flaxseed Oil: (General info at bottom of page)
- Powerfully reduces blood pressure in those with high blood pressure (ref)(2)(3)(4)
- Whole, freshly ground flaxseeds (30g / day) work best for lowering blood pressure
- Helps to reduce belly fat (“waist circumference”) in overweight individuals (ref)(2)(3)(4)
- Whole, freshly ground flaxseeds (30g / day) work best for this, due to the added fiber / polyphenols
- Very good for reducing PCOS symptoms and ovarian size (ref)(2)(3)(4)(5)
- Whole, freshly ground flaxseeds (30g / day) likely work best for PCOS
- Increases BDNF in humans (ref), is neuroprotective (ref), and may help protect / recover from stroke (ref)(2)(3)(4)
- Helps support cardiovascular health (including lower LDL and higher HDL) (ref)(ref2)
- Increases cell membrane fluidity and prevents deformation from high blood glucose levels (ref)
- Helps reduce symptoms of ulcerative colitis (a form of IBS) and markers of inflammation (both the oil and ground seeds). (ref)
- Likely helps improve active thyroid hormone levels compared to other fats (ref)(ref2)
- Promising results against various types of cancers (ref)(2)
- Possibly helps muscles recover from damage / inflammation (ref)
- Likely helps improve testicular function and raise low testosterone levels (ref)(2)(3)(4)(5)
- The Solgar brand to the left does not contain any lignans, and thus does not have any “estrogenic effects”
- Alpha-Linolenic acid (from flaxseed oil) is one of the two “true” essential fatty acids. The fish oils (EPA/DHA) are not. (Ref)
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(Always store flaxseed oil in the refrigerator or freezer! Storing it in the freezer will keep it fresh the longest (up to a year). It will get thicker but will not freeze. When you get to the last part of the bottle, can put in fridge to get the last part out.)
Flaxseed oil has numerous benefits, providing alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), the omega 3 essential fatty acid. Many people think that the fish oils (EPA / DHA) are the “essential fats”, when actually they are derivatives of ALA, the true essential fat. While all of these fats can be beneficial, the fish oils cannot be taken in high amounts without issues, because they are very prone to oxidation. Flaxseed oil can be taken in much higher amounts (provided that it is fresh), and thus can more easily replace the “inflammatory” omega 6 fats in cell membranes. I personally take both flaxseed oil and a low dose of fish oil.
While most people think that only the “fish oils” (EPA/DHA) can be immediately converted to anti-inflammatory compounds, this is not true. When ALA oxidizes, it gives off potent anti-inflammatory “oxylipins”, which can powerfully regulate chronic imflammation. (Ref)(ref2)(ref3)
Some conditions benefit more from all of the components present in flaxseeds (ALA, fiber, polyphenols, and lignans) rather than just the oil. I have listed this in the conditions above with a link to a good quality and inexpensive brand of flax seeds. These are best used freshly ground using a coffee grinder (so that the oil doesn’t oxidize) at intakes of at least 30g per day.
I use and recommend the brand of flaxseed oil above because it is stored in a glass container, they take out the oxygen and replace it with nitrogen to ensure that it is fresh upon delivery, and is inexpensive compared to other quality brands.