Flaxseed oil has been used in natural medicine for almost as long as people have known about it. With today’s scientific methods, we are finally able to explain exactly how flaxseed oil works in treating heart disease, cancer, and just as an excellent dietary supplement.
What Is Flaxseed Oil?
Flaxseed oil (sometimes called linseed oil) comes from the seeds of the flax plant. The flaxseed oil is very rich in both Omega-3 and Omega-6 acids, which work extremely well at lowering bad cholesterol levels and are used as part of a natural treatment (and to prevent) heart disease. Flaxseed oil has also been used topically as an anti-inflammatory agent, and to give hair a luxurious shine and full body. Another great oil to try is safflower oil.
How Is Flaxseed Oil Made?
Flaxseed oil is made using a cold press method. This is done to extract the oil from the fresh seeds, so that the nutrients are beneficial properties remain intact. Other methods for extracting oils from seeds involve heat, and the results are nowhere near as healthy. The cold press method is the only way to get all of the flaxseed oil benefits.
How Is Flaxseed Oil Used?
Externally, flaxseed oil has been used to reduce inflammation on cuts, bruises and rashes. It is even used as a beauty product to keep skin moisturized, and to keep hair shiny and give it a full, rich body.
Internally, flaxseed oil is used to lower cholesterol levels, and flush toxins from the blood stream. Because flaxseed has a very strong flavor, it is often taken in a gel or capsule form, rather than used in cooking. One capsule at the start of your day, along with a healthy smoothie and vitamins, will help to prevent the buildup of cholesterol and other toxins that your blood absorbs throughout the day.
Flaxseed Oil & Clinical Trials
When flaxseed oil was run through a number of clinical trials, the astounding amount of Omega-3 and Omega-6 oils easily showed that it was a great supplement to take to help lower cholesterol and fight heart disease.
The high levels of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) in the oil has also prompted medical trials to use flaxseed oil to prevent or fight tumors that might arise in breast cancer. The oil is also used for those people suffering from Sjogren’s Syndrome, as it helps to replenish moisture in the body to produce saliva and keep both the mouth and eyes from drying out.
What to Look For When Buying Flaxseed Oil
When shopping for flaxseed oil, there are a few key things to look out for. The first is to make sure that the words “cold press” is in the product description. This is the only acceptable method of extracting the oil to ensure you get all of the benefits of flaxseed oil. The second thing you want to check is that the ingredients are listed as “all natural” or even “organic.”
Some companies mix in additives that can actually negate the healthy benefits, and may even counteract lowering your cholesterol. The last main thing you want to check is the concentration of flaxseed oil in the gels or capsules. Again, you want to check to make sure there aren’t any additives, and 350mg to 500mg in each capsule is a high enough concentration for daily use.
How Much Flaxseed Oil Should I Take?
Measuring out the dosage for daily use is easy. A grown adult should take 1 or 2 capsules each day (or 2 tablespoons, if you get the flaxseed oil in its pure liquid form). Children (up to age 14) only need 1 capsule a day, but as a general rule of thumb, anyone over 100-pounds can take 2 flaxseed oil capsules to receive the full benefits. Remember, flaxseed oil isn’t just used to combat cholesterol and remove toxins in the blood – it is used as a preventive method to keep cholesterol levels from rising in the first place.