Flax seeds have a hard outer crust that prevents the body from digesting the whole seed. For best results the flax can be ground in a coffee grinder or food processor before consumption.
Whole flaxseeds can be stored at room temperature for at least one year but only for four months once ground. While newer research indicates ground flax is more stable than previously thought, keep ground flax stored in a sealed container in the refrigerator to preserve maximum nutritional value and freshness.
For health maintanance, 1 tbsp of ground flax per day is suggested to obtain the recommended allowance of ALA. If you have a medical condition such as heart disease, diabetes, psoriasis, or high blood pressure, then 2-4 tbsp is recommended. To lower LDL cholesterol, take 2 tbsp twice daily. Start slowly with 1/2 tbsp gradually increasing the daily dosage to avoid intestinal upset.
Divide your daily dosage in 2 for better digestion.
Below are some suggestions:
- Stir into your favorite fruit juice and drink
- Add to oatmeal or other hot cereal
- Stir into your favorite fruit smoothie
- Toast flax seeds and sprinkle on green salads ***
- Add to yogurt
- Stir into applesauce
- Sprinkle on cottage cheese or fruit salad
- Top cooked vegetables with toasted seeds
Flaxmeal absorbs water and thickens the consistancy of the food. When first added to liquids or moist foods, it will be crunchy initially but will soften in about 5-10 minutes.
Ground flax can be substituted for some of the flour, fat or eggs in pancakes, muffins, cookies, yeast and quick breads.
The following is the substitution formula for recipes;
3 tbsp ground flax = 3 tbsp and 1 tbsp oil or fat + 1 tbsp liquid
1 tbsp ground flax softened in 1/4 cup water = 1 egg
*** Salad topping: Toasted Flax Seed: Use 1/4 cup seeds and 1 tbsp olive oil. Microwave on full power for 4-5 minutes until seed is brown and hull is crunchy
6 cups chopped broccoli
¼ cup finely chopped onion
¾ cup raisins
½ cup sunflower seeds
2 tbsp. toasted flax seed (see above)
Optional: 6 slices bacon, browned and crumbled
¾ cup mayonnaise
2 tbsp. cider vinegar
2 tbsp. granulated sugar
• In a large bowl place broccoli, onion, raisins, sunflower seeds and flax seed.
• In another bowl, combine mayonnaise, vinegar and sugar. Mix well.
• Pour over salad, toss well.
• Chill before serving.